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The Bedfordshire Schools' Training Partnership

Design Technology PGCE with QTS

Postgraduate Certificate Education with QTS

The Subject Knowledge for Teaching Design Technology PGCE Course is continually revised and updated in order to respond to feedback from trainees and mentors and to take account of on-going government initiatives and legislation. It has been planned to include a range of experiences that will allow trainees to develop the knowledge, skills, understanding and awareness to become good Design Technology teachers. There are three elements that contribute to this: the Subject Knowledge for Teaching course itself; the generic Professional Studies course and the two school placements. Making coherent links between these three elements is essential if trainees are to exploit the course to its full potential and make the most of their development opportunities over the course of the year. 

The overall aim of the Design Technology component of the PGCE course is to foster the development of professional skills, knowledge and attitudes needed by teachers of Design Technology in order to engage, stimulate and promote pupils’ learning.

Through weekly Subject Knowledge for Teaching sessions trainees partake in a combination of classroom and workshop practice. Links are made with the Professional Studies course, issues arising from mentor sessions, assignments and meeting the needs of the Standards. Sessions take the form of practical workshops, lectures, group discussions and seminars, with sessions delivered by both the Subject Tutor and visiting speakers. The sessions are modelled on current good practice in Design Technology education and follow the same format as trainees are required to plan for in their own teaching. Together with a programme of reading and assignments, trainees will, by the end of the course, be able to achieve the standards identified in the Partnership’s Course Documents.

Trainees will consolidate their subject knowledge, considering further its intrinsic features from the perspectives of classroom teaching and learning.  Through discussion with the practicing teachers leading the course, trainees will develop an awareness and understanding of the influence particular aspects of their subject will have on work with pupils in the classroom.  By the end of the year trainees will have acquired the ability to see and interpret educational situations in new ways and have gained a growing awareness of their capabilities and potential as teachers, working both individually and in groups.

Course Objectives

The Design Technology ‘Subject Knowledge for Teaching’ course will at all stages, reinforce the overall aims of the course. In addition to the aims and objectives for the Bedfordshire Schools’ Training Partnership as stated in the Course Document, the subject aims and objectives for the Design Technology subject course are as follows:-

  • To equip trainees with the practical and intellectual skills to promote the useful, pleasurable, critical, and transforming value of Design Technology education within the wider curriculum.
  • Through a broad and balanced provision, to widen the trainees’ subject knowledge beyond that acquired within their first degree and other relevant experience.
  • To foster a recognition in the trainees of the importance of in depth subject knowledge, and hence a commitment to life-long learning where the practise, history and theory of Design Technology is concerned. Trainees are encouraged to widen their understanding of issues affecting Design Technology education.
  • To refine their application of subject knowledge, trainees are supported through a range of practical workshops which are delivered in response to trainee’s needs as identified in the Needs Audit. 
  • To equip trainees with the means to contribute intelligently to the shaping of Design Technology education of the future, by developing an awareness of its history and theory.
  • develop an appreciation of the place and role of Design Technology within the 11 - 16 curriculum and at post-16
  • to develop an understanding of a range of ‘assessment for learning’ strategies
  • become familiar with the statutory curricula, frameworks and initiatives relevant to Design Technology for Key Stages 3 and 4
  • gain an understanding of the ways pupils learn and develop a variety of teaching approaches that will support all pupils in achieving their potential
  • be confident and enthusiastic in communicating the subject to pupils of all abilities throughout the secondary age range
  • consider and apply an appropriate and effective range of teaching and learning strategies to both the  attainment targets and programmes of study in Design Technology
  • plan, prepare and put into operation appropriate units of work and lesson plans and be able to analyse and evaluate these in the light of experience
  • prepare pupils at all levels for assessment at Key Stages 3 and 4 and where appropriate post-16 qualifications
  • become confident and competent to engage in the professional role and responsibilities of a Design Technology teacher

Each term throughout the course, trainees will revisit their subject audit (originally completed in July) to re-evaluate their own personal knowledge of Design Technology and their personal skills - in order to identify any gaps or areas of weakness in their ‘subject Knowledge for teaching’. They will work with their mentor to develop their own set of targets and implement an action plan to remedy these during the course. Subject Leaders and our Quality Assurance team will monitor and support progress throughout the year.

Teaching and Learning Strategies

The subject application sessions involve a variety of methods of delivery.  These will include lectures, practical workshops including demonstrations, tutor and trainee led seminars, and trainee discussion.  Most sessions will involve preparatory reading and all sessions will be accompanied by an A4 Summary Sheet and follow-up activities.  Other relevant material in the form of ‘hand-outs’ will be used in most sessions.  This material should be kept in your file as both an aide-memoir and a resource for your development as a teacher. 

Trainees are expected to discuss and reflect upon their work and that of other teachers through the mentoring process as well as the Subject Knowledge for Teaching sessions. The Bedfordshire Schools’ Training Partnership believes that a spirit of intellectual enquiry should match the practical competence of teachers, focusing on how to stimulate and support effective and worthwhile learning for all pupils.  A balance of these attributes is essential for proficiency in the classroom.
Design Technology Content 

During the course trainees will become acquainted with the content and nature of the Design Technology curriculum 11 - 18 and will develop a language to describe the teaching and learning of Design Technology. Relevant literature such as the National Curriculum, OFSTED Reports, and the National Strategies will provide a framework to describe Design Technology, the variety of activities, outcomes of related activities and ways of promoting Design Technology in the classroom.  A wide range of exemplar resources and methods will be used so that trainee teachers experience different approaches, reflect on their experiences and consider the implications for the classroom.  Specific aspects of classroom organisation and management of the National Curriculum and the National Strategies will be introduced. The appropriate use of ICT in teaching and learning in Design Technology will be addressed throughout the course. Sessions will involve trainees in discussions, presentations of work and practical activities. Each session is supported by relevant subject reading.

Support for all our trainees :

  • a dedicated mentor within your placement school.
  • weekly Subject Knowledge for Teaching (SKfT) development sessions with Subject Leader (4-6pm, most subjects on Tuesday).
  • weekly Professional Studies development sessions (4-6pm on Thursday).
  • access to the full range of University of Bedfordshire facilities - including the library (Tuition fee trainees)
  • access to the University of Bedfordshire library (Salaried trainees)
  • termly visits from all SKfT Subject Course Leaders and our Quality Assurance team to monitor and support trainee  progress and development

Entry Requirements

  • You need to have, or to be obtaining, a Degree or an approved equivalent in your chosen teaching subject or have a qualification which is directly relevant to it.
  • You also need basic GCSE A-C (or recognised equivalent) qualifications in English and Mathematics.
  • You need to have passed your Numeracy and Literacy Skills tests
  • If you have qualifications from outside the European Economic Area (EEA), you will need to provide proof of equivalency from the National Academic Recognition Information Centre (NARIC)

We do recruit from all sections of the community and we always appoint on merit - regardless of disability, gender, race and religion.
Our aim is to appoint applicants who have the necessary talents, commitment and enthusiasm to become effective teachers.

As a trainee teacher you will have extensive contact with children and before you start the course you must have appropriate DBS (Disclosure and Barring Service) clearance




  • The overall aim of the Design Technology component of the PGCE course is to foster the development of professional skills, knowledge and attitudes needed by teachers of Design Technology in order to engage, stimulate and promote pupils’ learning.

  • Type: Post-Grad
  • Duration: Year 1
  • Subject Area: Post-Grad
  • Fees: £9,000

  • Location: Clifton, Bedfordshire