Department of Education

Initial Teacher Education

Director of Initial Teacher Education: Jo Tregenza

Our next ITE intake will be September 2021 with UCAS accepting applications from October 2021.

Thinking about training to be a teacher at Sussex? Check out our virtual information event web page for videos about the differet training routes available to you, what you'll need to know, and subject-specific details and advice.

You can also take a virtual tour of our beautiful campus and have a flick through our handbook ...

Our success

The partnership annually reviews the quality of its teacher education courses, as well as the progress of its trainees. Our courses are quality assured by external examiners every year and our overall provision is subject to inspection by Ofsted within a six year cycle. In 2014, Ofsted judged the overall effectiveness of our Primary ITE courses at Sussex as ‘Outstanding’ and our secondary courses as ‘Good’.

We are proud of our trainees and their success. Of our graduating cohort of 2020, 98% secured QTS.

Our partnership

The University of Sussex has a history of innovation for its teaching courses: 45 years ago it pioneered the model of school-based teacher training, which has now been adopted by all training institutions in England.

In 1993, the Sussex Consortium of Teacher Education and Research was established and has since overseen a partnership where over 100 local secondary and primary schools work together with the University to select, train and assess generations of new teachers. The result of this long-established relationship is that our trainees receive excellent support - both from schools offering professional practice placements, and from the experienced teachers who act as mentors supporting our trainees and offering models of good practice.

For the latest information on subjects and places available for teacher trainees next year (2021/22), see the PGCE & School Direct Place List: 2021/22.

Our offer

Our partnership is proud to offer a range of professional and academic training courses which lead to Qualified Teacher Status (QTS).

We currently offer a Postgraduate Certificate in Education (PGCE) in Primary  and Primary with Mathematics (ages 5-11) and Secondary (11-16) with specialisms in 14 subjects. For the latter, professional practice is focused on Key Stages 3 and 4, but training includes inputs on the Post-16 curriculum with teaching experience placements, where available and on request.

Alongside these core courses, we work closely with different groups of schools and Teaching School Alliances to offer both School Direct and employment-based School Direct: Salaried training routes in Primary and Secondary phases, as well as in a broader range of subject specialisms. The PGCE is offered to all School Direct candidates.

To support candidates in shortage areas, we provide Subject Knowledge Enhancement (SKE) training in Mathematics, Physics, Chemistry, Modern Foreign Languages., English, Classics, Design Technology and Primary Mathematics. For established and experienced school professionals without a teaching qualification or QTS, we offer the PGCE in Pedagogy and Practice and the Assessment-only route to QTS.

Our full PGCE course (worth up to 90 M level credits) is equivalent to half a Masters qualification and on graduation many of our trainees opt to enrol on our innovative MA in Education course. 

Our Mission: Pushing the Boundaries

We are committed to high quality, evidenced based, teacher education built upon genuine partnerships, inspired by best classroom practice and engaged in teaching as an intellectual and ethical vocation. Our collective mission is to recognise, support and develop a generation of reflective practitioners who are ready, willing and able to improve the life chances of every young person they teach and challenge the status quo. We aim to strive for innovative practice and push the boundaries.

Our trainees and our partners

We value, encourage and seek to empower our trainees and teachers to be: imaginative and creative, reflexive and curious, open and responsive, enthusiastic and passionate, independent and collaborative, determined, resilient, analytical, good humoured and optimistic. And always ready to see “the glass half full!”

Our approach

We believe that in a challenging and dynamic environment and amongst richly diverse school contexts we are more likely to succeed in mutually beneficial partnerships than apart. Working together in school based teacher education is a tradition founded at Sussex where it is recognised that new teachers need to observe, collaborate with and be supported by the best classroom practitioners. We know we can all learn and go on learning from each other and that engagement in teacher education illustrates an on-going engagement with evidence based practice and continuing professional development. As a partnership we all consider ourselves learners.

Our goals

Our partnership is ambitious. Quite simply we expect our graduating teachers to make a meaningful and tangible difference; raising the achievement of all their pupils by being innovative, challenging and creative in their teaching. Equally we all have a responsibility as credible role models to share fresh ideas, foster a hunger to learn and empower our young people to thrive as lifelong learners. We aim to ensure the well-being of our pupils, teachers, trainees and staff is valued. We want teacher education and all those involved to enrich the fabric of the school, contributing beyond the classroom, engaging with wider communities and valuing the whole child within them.