About this course
Prepare for a career teaching science at secondary school and sixth form level.
This subject knowledge enhancement (SKE) science course is ideal if you want to teach science but did not complete a degree that included the subject, or if you want a refresher in the curriculum for students aged 11 to 18.
This science SKE course is tailored to your education needs and will get you ready to apply for your initial teacher training (ITT), working towards qualified teacher status (QTS).
Our subject knowledge enhancement courses are for graduates who want to develop a greater depth of subject understanding before training for qualified teacher status. This intensive science SKE course will help develop the skills and subject knowledge you’ll need to become a science teacher to the 11 to 18 age range.
This subject knowledge enhancement science course will help you develop your knowledge in biology and chemistry and also covers SKE physics, to help you towards QTS. Once you pass you’ll be able to apply for our PGCE Secondary Sciences or PGCE Physics and Mathematics courses beginning the following September.
To be ready for the challenges of teacher training and the classroom, you need excellent subject knowledge and understanding. This course ideal if you studied a science-related degree not in biology, chemistry or physics and want to prepare for an initial teacher training (ITT) programme in science for ages 11 to 18. It is also useful if you want to improve your knowledge in the physical sciences.
In SKE science you’ll learn through a combination of face-to-face teaching in our labs and distance (online) learning tailored to your needs. You’ll be taught by highly experienced tutors, who specialise in secondary and sixth form science education.
The Government funds this course for most eligible students, so you do not have to pay any fees. This bursary (funded by the Department for Education) can help towards your study. When you complete this course, you’ll be expected to go directly into an ITT course to work towards your QTS.
The course lead is Matt Perks, a Senior Teaching Fellow at Southampton Education School and lead tutor for this programme. Learn more by visiting Matt’s staff profile.
This course is based at Highfield.
This qualification is awarded by the University of Southampton.
Download the programme specification
The programme specification sets out the learning outcomes of this course and details how the course is taught and assessed.
In light of COVID-19, we’ve made changes to some elements of course delivery for 2020-21. For details as to how this has changed delivery for this course, please view the Addendum to the Programme Specification PDF.
You’ll need an:
- undergraduate degree in a science-related subject
- GCSEs (minimum grade 4/C) in English language and maths
- GCE A level in a science subject
Find the equivalent international qualifications for your country.
Got a question?
If you're not sure that you have the right experience or qualifications to get onto this course please contact our enquiries team; we're very happy to help.Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Tel: +44(0)23 8059 5000
COVID-19: we've made some changes to the structure of the course for this academic year. Download the programme specification addendum in 'About this course' to learn more.
The distance learning part of this SKE course can be started from January. Face to face teaching begins in July, when all students must start the course.
All of our subject knowledge enhancement (SKE) courses are made up of one module. This course is tailored to meet your, or a collective group of student’s, subject knowledge requirements. This length of this course is around 200 hours.
You’ll need to complete the course with sufficient subject and pedagogical (interactions between teachers, students, and the learning environment and tasks) knowledge to meet the Teachers’ Standard 3. This is required to prepare you for Initial Teacher Training (ITT) that leads to the QTS awarding.
This course is designed to meet your needs. You’ll have 2 weeks of face-to-face teaching, combining topics in physics, practicals and theory in chemistry and advanced practical work in biology. Some work will focus on the required practicals in the new GCSE and A Level assessment.
As part of your distance (online) learning, you’ll choose the units most suited to you. They can be completed before the face-to-face teaching or after.
Want more detail? See all the modules in the course.
COVID-19: we've made some changes to our modules for this academic year. Download the programme specification addendum in 'About this course' to learn more.
For entry in Academic Year 2019-20
You must study the following module in year 1:
Learning and assessment
COVID-19: we've made some changes to our learning and assessment methods for this academic year. Download the programme specification addendum in 'About this course' to learn more.
You’ll learn through face to face and distance (online) learning. To support your learning, we offer:
- micro-teaching activities
- independent research
- access to teaching resources
In the taught part of this course, you’ll learn through:
- practical sessions
- flipped learning
- independent study
- online learning
We’ll assess you through:
- portfolio of evidence
- open book tasks
- written assignments
Each topic also assessed through subject knowledge questions. These are typically questions taken from past GCSE and A level exam papers.
We’ll assign you a personal tutor, and you’ll have access to a senior tutor.
Students taking this programme will normally have a prior offer of a place on any Initial Teacher Training (ITT) route that leads to QTS.
It is expected that students completing this programme will all progress to ITT. This will then lead on to a variety of career options, including:
- teaching science to age groups 11 to 16
- teaching biology, chemistry and physics to age groups:
- 11 to 18
- 16 and older
- associated careers in education
- working with young people
Careers services at Southampton
We're a top 20 UK university for employability (QS Graduate Employability Rankings 2019). Our Careers and Employability Service will support you throughout your time as a student and for up to 5 years after graduation. This support includes:
- work experience schemes
- CV/resume and interview skills workshops
- networking events
- careers fairs attended by top employers
- a wealth of volunteering opportunities
- study abroad and summer school opportunities
We have a vibrant entrepreneurship culture. You'll be able to take advantage of:
Fees, costs and funding
What your fees pay for
Your tuition fee covers the full cost of tuition and all examinations.
A bursary is available for all eligible students.
This is typically UK/EU students with an undergraduate degree classification of 2:2 or higher.
Other postgraduate funding options
A variety of additional scholarships, grants and bursaries may be available to help you fund your master’s study, both from the University and from other organisations.
How to apply
For a place on our SKE course, you need to apply for a PGCE course here at The University of Southampton or with a provider.
As part of your application, please indicate you want to complete a subject knowledge enhancement before starting your PGCE course, or after submitting your application an advisor may inform you that you need to complete a SKE course.
All PGCE applications are processed through UCAS. When you apply, you'll be taken to the UCAS website where you'll need to register an account with UCAS to submit an application. For information: there is a plan to move PGCE courses from applying through UCAS onto a DFE system.
Applications must be received no later than 4 weeks before the start of the course. You must supply all supporting documentation at least two weeks before starting your course.
We recommend you apply at least 6 weeks before the start of the course to ensure you're able to meet our requirements and apply for a visa in time.
We cannot guarantee students who do not meet these deadlines will be able to begin their course.
When you apply you’ll need to submit a personal statement explaining why you want to take the course.
You’ll need to include information about:
- your knowledge of the subject area
- why you want to study a postgraduate qualification in this course
- how you intend to use your qualification
You'll also need to send 2 academic references.
Please include the required paperwork showing your first degree and your IELTS English language test score (if you are a non-native English speaker) with your application. Without these, your application may be delayed.
Learn more about how to apply with our postgraduate application guide.
What happens after you apply
You'll be able to track your application through our online Applicant Record System.
We will assess your application on the strength of your:
- academic achievements
- relevant professional experience
- personal statement
- academic references
We'll get back to you within 6 weeks with a decision about your application.
Equality and diversity
We treat and select everyone in line with our Equality and Diversity Statement.
Got a question?
Please contact us if you're not sure you have the right experience or qualifications to get onto this course.
Tel: +44(0)23 8059 5000