Post Compulsory Education

Pave the way to further professional education-related qualifications

2yrsPart Time 1yrFull Time

Star Course Overview

Why take this course?

This recognised teaching qualification enables industry professionals who do not possess an undergraduate degree to become a qualified further education teacher. Examples of industry background people considering applying for this course may include (but are not limited to) health & social care, hairdressing, beauty therapy, construction trades, engineering and public services e.g. Police, Fire and other uniformed services.

You can follow a one year full-time programme at the university, or train over two years on a part-time basis at one of our partner colleges (Chichester CollegeEastleigh CollegeIsle of Wight CollegeSouth Downs College). The full time route is intended for those not currently employed in a teaching role whereas the part time route is designed for teachers who currently work in the post-compulsory education sector. Both routes encourage you to develop subject-specific knowledge by working closely with your course teachers and work-based subject mentors.

What will I experience?

On this course, you will develop your skills as a teacher through practical activity and the study of theories and contemporary issues within further education.

You will join fellow professionals from a range of subject backgrounds for lectures and seminars, creating an effective peer network where a variety of teaching practice can be shared. You will then gain work experience in a teaching placement.

For full time students the course is similar to a full time job as you will attend lectures and seminars at the university or be on placement days per week. While hours may vary slightly a student’s average hours of attendance are from 8.30am to 4.30pm. Placements are arranged by the university for all full time students.

On the part time route, you will attend one of our partner colleges once per week (see college’s website for details). You are expected to have secured your own teaching placement where you will teach at least 50 hours per year and have an identified subject mentor. 

What opportunities might it lead to?

This Certificate in Education provides the skills and knowledge to take up teaching roles in further education environments, including:

  • Further education colleges
  • Sixth-form colleges
  • Private training providers
  • Public services
  • Voluntary organisations

The Certificate in Education is a professional teaching qualification which recognised by further education providers in the UK.  Therefore on completion of the course students go on to work in further education organisations, however those wishing to undertake further academic study may wish to top-up to a BA (Hons) Education and Training at the University of Portsmouth. In addition Cert Ed graduates may apply for membership to the Institute for Learning (IfL).

Juliet Littlechild, CertEd Post-Compulsory Education student 2013

As a new teacher in education, Certificate in Education inspired me to create teaching resources which are creative and fun, taught me certain teaching methods and strategies for engaging learners and creating a fun learning experience.

Juliet Littlechild, CertEd Post Compulsory Education student 2013

Compare this course through UNISTATS

Key Facts

1 year full time, 2 years part time
A minimum of level 3 qualification within your subject delivery area coupled with sufficient experience to establish professional competence. GCSE Mathematics and English language at grade C or above, or equivalent. All shortlisted applicants are subject to interview. All offers are subject to Enhanced Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) clearance and Occupational Health clearance. In addition part-time students are required to have secured their own teaching placement where you will teach at least 50 hours per year and have an identified subject mentor. Full-time students will be provided with a teaching placement by the University. English language proficiency at a minimum of IELTS band 6.0 with no component score below 5.5. Other qualifications 2016 entry requirements

Students at franchise colleges: Please contact Academic Registry on 023 9284 5259.

The part time route of this course is not open to International, Channel Islands and Isle of Man students.

UK/EU/Channel Islands and Isle of Man students
2015/16 entry: full time: £9,000
2016/17 entry: full time: £9,000

International students 

2015/16 entry: full time: £11,500*
2016/17 entry: full time: £12,000*

*Tuition fee is subject to annual increase.


For details see fees terms and conditions

+44 (0)23 9284 5204
School of Education and Continuing Studies
Programme specification


Education, Childhood and Youth Studies

Find out what our students say about studying at Portsmouth, including:

  • Hands-on opportunities to work in a relevant educational setting
  • The support available to all students
  • The flexibility of unit options that enable you to tailor your study to your own interests

Browse all courses in Education, Childhood and Youth Studies

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Light bulb Structure & Teaching

The course is split into four units that are studied in one year (full time) or two years (part time).

Teaching Block 1 focuses on developing you as a teaching practitioner. This involves learning about teaching concepts and developing practical skills in planning and delivering lessons to a high standard, as well as assessing students. This will be delivered and assessed via the following two units:

Unit 1.1 Planning, Assessing and Evaluating Teaching and Learning Programmes: this unit encourages you to understand how to organise and plan your teaching and learning sessions and use different assessment methods, as well as start developing your own personal and professional skills.

Unit 1.2 Theories and Principles for Planning and Enabling Learning in a Specialist Subject Area: in this unit you will examine a range of teaching and learning theories, learn how to plan and develop inclusive learning into your lessons and understand how to use a range of communication and classroom management skills.

Teaching Block 2 is designed to enable you to establish a wider knowledge of the further education sector. You will research contemporary issues which are affecting further education as well as continuing to hone your teaching practice. This will be delivered and assessed via the following two units:

Unit 2.1 Professional Practice: this unit encourages you to review the development of your personal and professional skills, develop a career management file and research into a specific area of your teaching.

Unit 2.2 Curriculum Design in a Specialist Subject Area: in this unit you will learn about the range of contexts in which education and training are offered, analyse theories and models of curriculum design and understand how to promote equality within practice.

Teaching and Assessment

Teaching aims to demonstrate good practice and therefore employs a range of styles which include seminars, workshops, lectures and active group participation. Your time in class will develop your skills and knowledge to inform your own teaching practice and help to develop your own teaching style.

The emphasis throughout the course is on inclusive learning and teaching combined with reflective practice within a teacher’s own specialist subject area.

How are you assessed?

Each teaching block you will complete two units of study, with each unit comprising between 2 – 3 assignments. On the full-time pathway you will take both teaching blocks (four units of study) during the year. On the part-time pathway you will take one teaching block (two units of study) each year.

Each unit has varying approaches to assessment.  Examples include research based essays, teaching practice files, lesson observations and logging personal development which will be supported by reflective accounts. 

Stephen Corbett

Tutor's view

Stephen Corbett
Post-Compulsory Education

This course is designed for subject specialists who wish to develop the skills to deliver effective learning and teaching to students. The course is highly demanding and highly rewarding as it requires its students to be in constant pursuit for standards of excellence.

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Monitor Facilities & Features

Study in SECS

The School comprises a body of enthusiastic staff with a range of expertise in the professional and academic sectors. We offer a welcoming learning environment, in a location near the heart of town, the student buildings and the sea front.

Academic Skills Unit (ASK)

ASK will help you become a successful university student. Our workshops are designed to improve a number of essential academic skills from essay writing and understanding plagiarism to revision and exam techniques. This is a great way to enhance your academic performance and make a smooth transition into university study.

University Library

Modern, comfortable and a great learning environment, our library offers a wealth of information including 400,000 books, DVDs, maps and thousands of online ejournals and newspapers. Many electronic resources are available anywhere, 24/7 and our friendly staff are always on hand to help.

Mortarboard Careers & Opportunities

Career prospects

Where next?
Where next?

The CertEd offers non-graduates in teaching roles the opportunity to secure a qualification in their chosen profession, enhancing your potential for promotion and progression. It also paves the way to a BEd in education.

Work experience

Employment boosting opportunites
Employment boosting opportunites

Full-time students on the CertEd will have a placement arranged by the School of Education to put their learning into practice, and will have secured more than 100 hours of teaching practice at the completion of the programme. Part-time students are likely to be working in this field already. 

Career planning

Career planning
Career planning
6.04 minutes

Finding a job is a competitive business, but the statistics show that 88 per cent of our 2013 graduates went into employment, further study or training within six months of finishing their degrees.

To make sure you take the right steps on your career path, we’re here to give you help, support and advice throughout your study. Even after you’ve graduated, we continue to give you support for up to five years.

Employers tell us that they want graduates to be able to demonstrate certain skills when they come out of university. Our courses take account of this. We make sure we prepare you for employment through work-related learning, projects, placements and working in simulated environments that are designed to prepare you for the working world.

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Apply now

Online application form

Apply direct using our online form

Your application will be received by the University's Admissions Team before being transferred to individual departments for consideration and processing.

Applying via an education agent, representative or partner institution? Apply to our International Office.

Visiting opportunities

Our next Open Day is Saturday 17 Oct, 2015

Book now

International Students

Staff from our international Office regularly attend overseas exhibitions. To find out more about these and our visits to your region see our International Office exhibitions page.

Fees and Funding

Find out more about fees and funding available to you at Portsmouth.

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