A PGCE is a Postgraduate Certificate in Education that may or may not require Master's credits. It can be offered in England, Wales or Northern Ireland. The program is a course that spans one year and enables the holder to train to be a teacher.
PGCE Personal Statements
Applications for the PGCE can be made between September and June in order to begin coursework in September. Most applicants should file their application with the Graduate Teaching Training Registry.
One part of the application process involves creating a personal statement. The personal statement is fairly brief, covering no more than 47 lines. The personal statement should include:
- Reasons for wanting to teach
- Significance of previous experience
- Relevance of previous education
- Work experience with the group with whom the applicant would like to teach
Some examples of statements that could be part of your PGCE personal statement include:
- I have really enjoyed working with primary level students through my experience as a teaching assistant.
- My undergraduate work in English has helped me to build the skills necessary to effectively teach writing to youth.
- I have a passion for education and believe it to be the foundation of any civilized society. As such, I want to be a part of transforming the lives of youth to prepare them for university and careers.
- My experience as a psychology major has helped me to understand child development and has caused me to want to be a part of helping young children to build foundational skills for learning.
- As a dance student for many years, my love of physical education and my natural aptitude for it make me a highly qualified candidate to teach physical education to primary level children.
- My coursework in the field of literature and extensive knowledge of the topic uniquely qualify me to teach primary level English courses.
- I am motivated and passionate about being a part of the educational system in order to affect positive change in society.
- My experience as a daycare provider has built the experience with youth that has prepared me to be an effective teacher of primary level students.
- As a youth group coordinator of teenage children, I have the experience to effectively teach and reach this population in the classroom.
- I have had the opportunity to build my interpersonal and communication skills in a variety of jobs which makes me a candidate who will be effective in working with other faculty, communicating with parents, and being a highly effective teacher.
- In my previous work and education experience, I have formed the time management skills that are crucial to success in the classroom as an educator.
- My successful completion of my science and math coursework in my undergraduate level education has helped me to build the problem solving skills that are imperative for success in the classroom.
- My undergraduate mathematical work has prepared me for teaching secondary math.
- My own artwork and art coursework exemplifies my creativity and success in art, and reflects my potential for success as a teacher of art at the primary level.
Hopefully these examples will help inspire you to prepare your own personal statement for your application.
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PGCE Personal Statement Examples
By YourDictionaryA PGCE is a Postgraduate Certificate in Education that may or may not require Master's credits. It can be offered in England, Wales or Northern Ireland. The program is a course that spans one year and enables the holder to train to be a teacher.
This is a crucial part of the application and your chance to stand out from the crowd. You have up to 47 lines (4,000 characters including spaces) in which to persuade your chosen initial teacher training (ITT) providers to offer you an interview. The statement must be concise, enthusiastic and sell your potential to be a successful teacher.
What you should include in the personal statement
Providers will be looking for evidence that you understand the realities, rewards and challenges of teaching. You'll be asked to describe your reasons for wanting to teach, and should explain the relevance of your previous education and experience, including teaching, school visits and other work with young people. Consider all of the following points when you are deciding what to include in your personal statement.
Reasons for applying for teacher training
Explain why you've applied to be a teacher and why you've applied for your chosen subject and age group. Demonstrate your commitment and motivation through recent examples from your work experience and academic work.
School experience and what you gained from it
Training providers will want to know how much experience you've had in schools, for example:
- areas of the national curriculum you observed
- age groups you worked with
- subjects you covered
- types of schools you visited and for how long.
Reflect on what you did in any work experience, particularly relating to the national curriculum, and what you learnt from it.
Your work experience and how it relates to teaching
Use the personal statement to give further information on the work experience you listed in the application form. Explain how this experience is relevant to teaching, particularly where you've been working with young people in schools and other contexts such as youth clubs, summer camps or sports clubs. Comment on work experience in other settings, such as voluntary work and extracurricular activities, and show how the skills you gained will help you become an effective teacher.
Reflect on your teaching skills
Think about the skills and qualities needed to be an effective teacher, such as communication, team working and leadership, and how your own experiences have helped you to develop these. Again, use examples from your degree and recent work experience.
If you don't live in the UK currently, explain why you want to study in the UK and, if relevant, provide evidence, through NARIC for example, that your qualifications are at the required standard. Check that your language skills are sufficient to complete the training programme as requirements vary between institutions.
Explain anything not made clear elsewhere on the application, such as reasons for restricted geographical mobility or gaps in your education or working life.
Tips for writing and checking your personal statement
- Remember that you can only write one personal statement for all your choices, so make sure it reflects the route/s you have applied for.
- Give yourself enough time to write a few drafts.
- Write your statement using a word processing package so you can check it for spelling and grammar errors. Cut and paste it into the application form as you go along to make sure you don’t go over your character limit.
- Keep it simple and natural in style.
- Personalise your statement by writing in the first person, using 'me', 'I' and 'my'.
- Use action verbs such as 'coordinated', 'established' and 'managed'.
- Provide evidence of your motivation, experiences and qualifications as well as your understanding of teacher training and the role of a teacher.
- As the word count is limited, make sure each sentence contributes something useful.
- Show your personal statement to a school recruiter, careers adviser or tutor for feedback.
- Copy your application, particularly the personal statement, before sending it so that you can remind yourself of the content when going for interviews.
- Make sure the personal statement is all your own work, as all statements are put through the Copycatch similarity detection system.