Mathematics

Applicants who wish to teach mathematics should have a good first degree in mathematics, or a good first degree in which at least 50% of the topics studied were pure and applied mathematics, or some combination of first and higher degrees which contain an equivalent amount of mathematical content.

Applicants who need to take a Mathematics Enhancement Course to increase their degree-level knowledge are also welcomed, and each case will be considered on its merits according to overall past experience and qualifications. We would still expect you to have some degree level mathematics already, and applicants considering this route need to note that an early application is desirable.

The aim and character of the course

The aim of the Mathematics course is to help you to become an effective secondary school teacher of mathematics.

To help you achieve this goal, we teach you through a variety of styles, paces, approaches and presentations in the hope that you will use a similar variety when you teach. Learning mathematics can be challenging. It requires concentration, and can feel like hard work, but it also has the ability to surprise, and to give a sense of achievement and enjoyment. Learning to be a teacher will be all of these things too.The objectives of the course:

  • to provide mathematical experiences on which you can reflect as a learner, and relate these to planning for teaching
  • to offer insights into children’s learning and, through recognition of their particular conceptions, to help you plan your teaching accordingly
  • to provide skills and experiences in planning, teaching and managing effective lessons through which learners can gain mathematical knowledge, awareness and understanding
  • to help you to reflect on and analyse your teaching, and make decisions about how to modify and adapt it to be more effective for students’ learning
  • to introduce you to a range of resources, research and theoretical perspectives on which to base your growth as a teacher
  • to enable you to develop skills and experience in ICT that will support your teaching and its management

Main themes of the course

  • Developing reflective teaching (DRT): in which you think about your practice in a professional, developmental manner
  • Learners’ mathematical development (LMD): in which you think about mathematics and lessons from the point of view of how learners think
  • Teaching and learning a topic (TLT): in which you learn how to structure mathematical knowledge so that your teaching is effective
  • Planning and management (PM): in which you look at planning and managing lessons, classrooms, professional work and yourself.

These themes relate to each other like the vertices of a tetrahedron, because any three of them can be viewed through the perspective of the fourth.

Further Details

Sessions based in the Department are planned by course tutors in coordination with classroom teachers in partnership schools to allow you to try out ideas in school, and feed back ideas into Department sessions. One aim of the partnership is to allow you to develop teaching from both practical and research-based, theoretical perspectives.

Teaching on the PGCE course is strongly informed by the mathematics education research which takes place in the Department, some of which is undertaken collaboratively with partner schools.Course tutors are active researchers and experienced in writing for teacher trainees and practising teachers of mathematics.

See also Mathematics Education Research Group.

PGCE Mathematics Picture Gallery

Page last modified: October 17, 2017