History PGCE

This one year programme leads to a PGCE, recommendation for QTS and 60 credits at Master's level.

Programme overview

Good history teaching takes a variety of forms. You will discover how best to use your creativity and talents to teach history effectively and inspire young people.

What you will learn

You will be introduced to the underpinning concepts in history education which shape a history curriculum.

This programme covers KS3, GCSE and A-level, meaning you’ll get to teach a wide range of history at varying levels of depth.

You’ll learn a wide variety of strategies to engage, motivate and challenge students in the process of historical enquiry.

By the end of the programme, you’ll become a confident, reflective, innovative and flexible teacher of history.

How you will learn

We will provide you with a high level of tuition at professional and Master's level with leading subject specialists.

You’ll work collaboratively with your fellow student teachers and you’ll work closely with strong practitioners in partner schools.

Who this is for

The majority of our students have a minimum of a 2:1 degree classification. All have a love for history.

You’ll be part of a group of student teachers ranging in age, work experience, and historical interests.

You’ll all be committed, energetic and will need to be prepared for a busy, but highly rewarding and exciting year.

Experiences in school


There will be a short primary school experience during the PGCE year. This work allows you to understand the child's experience before they go into secondary school.

Placement one

During the first term, you begin with preliminary visits to a secondary school. These visits will help prepare you for a shorter placement in that school.

Placement two

In the spring term, you will be on placement in a different secondary school. This placement will last the duration of the spring term.

Placement three

You will have another placement in the third term, possibly in a different school again.


You will benefit greatly from having your placements spread across different schools. They will provide you with the opportunity to:

  • compare and contrast your experiences
  • face different challenges and achieve different triumphs
  • see different teaching styles
  • learn how you can adapt to different situations.

By the end of your third teaching placement, you will have developed into a confident teacher with your own teaching style.

We will support you throughout your teaching experiences and you have a mentor in school. These specially trained teachers are committed to developing your practice in the classroom.


As well as learning from subject specialists and developing methodologies to teach history across the key stages, you’ll also have many other opportunities. These could include:

  • Participating in local history teacher professional networks
  • Participating in interdisciplinary initiatives.

Contact us

Due to the COVID19 pandemic and in line with government policy, some of our PGCE team are working remotely so are not contactable by telephone.  Please contact us by email so we can assist.

Initial Teacher Education (PGCE and School Direct) Office
Phone: +44 (0) 117 331 4492 We are working remotely during the current lockdown and as a result are only available via email
Email: ed-pgce@bristol.ac.uk

School of Education 

University of Bristol 
35 Berkeley Square 
Bristol, BS8 1JA

More contact details


Find out about available funding to help you get into teaching

Your tutors

The tutors for history are David Rawlings, Dr Kate Hawkey and Ms Jayne Prior.

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