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What makes PGCE - Secondary - Design and Technology (Food) at Worcester special?

Age phase: 11-16 with post-16 enhancement

Unique opportunities:

  • Develop your own philosophy for learning and teaching in design & technology food
  • Enrich your subject knowledge by drawing on the expertise of an experienced design & technology food teacher, with over 20 years’ experience
  • Benefit from strong relationships with subject mentors across the partnership schools
  • Enjoy visiting a local partnership school with a focus on SEND
  • Benefit from visiting and working closely with primary schools to gain an understanding of the transition from KS2 -KS3
  • Benefit from becoming a member of the Worcestershire Food Cluster Group, allowing you to build relationships and network with a wide range of food teachers
  • Benefit from cross-curricular working across a variety of subjects
  • Engage in current debates around the design & technology curriculum


Key features

  • The University has been training teachers in this field since it was first established and the course has continually developed to be at the forefront of current thinking
  • At Worcester you'll benefit from a practical and collaborative course at the forefront of current thinking. Learning from tutors as they model effective teaching strategies, you'll understand how to learn in groups, discuss and present ideas and reflect on the effectiveness of each strategy
  • You'll explore designing and making as social activities in a creative and collaborative environment and with a supportive network of peers
  • You will develop the skills to be a self-reflective classroom practitioner and equip yourself to begin your career in teaching

NB: Design and Technology is offered through both Core and School Direct routes.

Laura Naughton profile image

Laura Naughton

My passion in Food & Nutrition led me to complete an undergraduate degree in Food Science and Health at the University of Limerick. After four years in the food industry working in quality and technical management roles, I decided it was finally time to pursue my dream of becoming a food teacher. I took the leap and moved during a worldwide pandemic from my home in the Republic of Ireland to Worcester. It was a daunting start but looking back now I would not change it for the world!

My time at Worcester has been incredibly supportive with outstanding experience and knowledge being delivered. The subject sessions in university allowed me to develop my subject knowledge, ensuring I was prepared for my school placements. I had numerous opportunities available to me throughout the course. I took Science as a second subject, collaborated within P.E. offering my skills as a qualified Irish Dance teacher to enhance the curriculum. I will continue to stay in touch with all of my mentors from university and school, I can trust they will be there at hand to answer any queries I may have during my ECT years. I look forward to applying all that I have learnt over the past year in my new school!

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Bethany Lewis

I have wanted to be a food teacher since studying A-level food and completing a food degree but decided to work in the food industry first to broaden my knowledge. It was a big step leaving a job I really enjoyed but fast forward 12 months and I am so glad I did.

Going back to university after 4 years out of education was daunting, however, I am so pleased I chose the University of Worcester as my training provider. It has been a particularly difficult year to train with covid restrictions and two national lockdowns, but the University has continued to deliver high quality training sessions both in person where possible and online. Subject sessions have been informative and enjoyable led by an experience tutor. I have trained in two very contrasting placement schools that have been very supportive during my time with them and have really helped me develop my understanding of the teaching pedagogy. Thanks to the support of the university, I have secured a job as an ECT in a very local school and I cannot wait to get started!

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James Cooper

I have been involved in food since my teenage years initially completing a modern apprenticeship in Hospitality, then spent over a decade working in new product development roles in the food industry. Once I had decided to pursue a career in teaching the University of Worcester was the obvious choice for the PGCE. I completed my undergraduate degree in 'Food safety and Quality Assurance' at the University of Worcester and thoroughly enjoyed my time there.

The year of the PGCE course has flown by.  The time spent in university has been extremely informative and I have learnt how to deploy a range of different teaching strategies in the classroom. The support provided by my mentors during both placements was excellent and I now feel fully prepared to start my new role in teaching this September.    

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Meg Taylor

I completed my Degree in Childhood and Youth and Professional Studies and was currently working as a Teaching Assistant at a Primary School. I have always known I have wanted to go into teaching but was unsure of the correct route to take. I saw the PGCE for DT (Food) at the University of Worcester and I just knew this was the course for me. Food has always been my hobby and passion. I am constantly in the kitchen at home and in all honesty, it is what makes me happy. As my degree had no link to Food or DT, I was worried I would not even get an interview, but I was wrong. I contacted the course tutor and applied for the course and was given a place.

My time at Worcester has been the best experience of my life. The support I have received has been amazing from both my placement schools and the University. My subject knowledge has developed through the year which has allowed my confidence to grow as a teacher. My training year has gone by so quickly and by the end of it I feel I have the skills and knowledge to be a successful teacher. To anyone thinking about becoming a Food teacher, Worcester is a wonderful platform to start your journey.

Subject Knowledge Enhancement

"I really enjoyed my PGCE year at Worcester; it gave me a very supportive start to my teaching career."

Victoria Honeybourne, PGCE Secondary graduate

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April Bounds

After working as an unqualified teacher in alternative provision for a number of years, I decided to complete a PGCE.  I wanted to develop my understanding of pedagogy and learn to teach in a secondary school. Although I have an undergraduate degree in History, I was driven by a desire to teach a subject that would be applicable for life. I had taken Food Technology at GCSE / A Level and enjoyed my experience at school and considered how I’d like to share that enjoyment. 

It has been such an amazing experience going back to university after 9 years, and I’m pleased that I chose the University of Worcester.  The subject sessions were delivered by an experienced mentor and complimented placements well, allowing me to develop my skills in the classroom.  I attended two contrasting placements, mainstream and a SEND school that have enabled me to become a well-rounded teacher.  Despite disruptions this year with COVID-19 the University of Worcester has gone above and beyond to ensure that all its PGCE candidates are supported regarding both their professional development and wellbeing.  I’m looking forward to applying all that I have learned at Worcester University in my NQT year.

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Rebecca Batner

After leaving retail management and deciding to pursue a passion of becoming a teacher, I felt a little worried that I would lack the experience needed.  However, I very quickly found that everyone’s differing experience and previous careers made for a great mix of strengths and expertise within our subject group and helped us to support each other through different topics and tasks.

The PGCE allowed us to focus on our subject, as well as the competencies and tools needed to become a skilled teacher. The mentors and subject specialists were always extremely supportive throughout and would always provide encouragement, advice, and timely feedback. The course is well organised and I felt the support and structure extended to the mentors and teachers at both of my placement schools. The course flew past so quickly but even so, I feel I have come away from my studies armed with the all right tools, means and a great support network that will enable me to continue to drive my own professional development for years to come.


Nichola Power

I was lucky that my local university runs a PGCE that focusses on design and technology and more specifically food. I had thought about teaching in the past, however, wanted to gain some industry experience before going into the profession. After a career in cafes and restaurants, working in all positions from Commis to Head Chef, I thought that it was time to return to education and to help educate those students who want to go into catering as a profession, as it has given me a lot of real life examples to refer to in the classroom.

The University of Worcester, and its tutors, has helped support me through the PGCE, providing interesting and informative sessions looking into the various aspects of teaching. Subject sessions based around new things to try in the food classroom and professional sessions to help us understand what being a teacher is all about.


Rachel Armstrong

After completing my undergraduate degree at home in Northern Ireland, I made the decision to move to Worcester to complete my PGCE in Design and Technology (Food) at University of Worcester. Although daunting I can definitely say it was the right decision! Apart from being renowned for its high-quality teacher training, Worcester has some of the most supportive and dedicated lecturers who made my PGCE year informative and meaningful, but also highly enjoyable. Studying at Worcester gave me a fantastic start to my teaching career through the interesting seminars and guest speakers provided, studying the latest pedagogical ideas and the great range of placement schools on offer.

Worcester is definitely my new second home!

PGCE Design and Technology (food) graduate George Taylor

George Taylor

I completed my initial undergraduate degree in culinary arts and Hospitality management in 2013. Following this I spent a few years developing my transferable skills within an admin-based role, before gaining valuable school based experience as a maths coach within a Birmingham school. I opted for the school direct route into teacher training in 2018, this allowed me to train at a school more local to where I live while also receiving the comprehensive support and training from the University of Worcester.

My experience at the University of Worcester was extremely positive. The teacher training staff and tutors at the university are experienced, supportive and knowledgeable; there were always on hand for any questions that I had. The courses professional study sessions covered many useful areas of teaching pedagogy, while the subject sessions supported me in utilising my food-based knowledge within a teaching context. The excellent training received from the university meant I was able to guarantee my first teaching position four months before finishing my training. Cookery and food have been a passion of mine for as long as I can remember. Being able to use this passion and knowledge to teach and inspire young people to learn about, food, cookery and nutrition brings me great satisfaction.

PGCE Design and Technology (food) graduate Zoe Deery

Zoe Deery

After completing an under-graduate degree at home in Northern Ireland, I knew my next goal was to complete teacher training. My decision to move to the University of Worcester to study Design and Technology is something I will always be thankful for. As well as making friends for life, the staff were extremely supportive and always went over and beyond to make sure we were content and enjoying our teaching experience. The University have so many excellent placement schools on offer and often had interesting lectures and seminars, while also inviting guest speakers to talk about personal experience. I learned so many valuable teaching skills and improved my knowledge around different pedagogy. The city of Worcester is also fantastic with lots to do at the weekends.

Towards the end of the year, I felt confident in my ability to manage and enjoy working in a school back in Northern Ireland, which thankfully I am currently experiencing first-hand. I will always look back at my time at the University at Worcester with happy and positive memories and will definitely be visiting in the near future! 

PGCE Design and Technology (food) graduate Abbie Glenny

Abbie Glenny

I completed my undergraduate degree at home in Northern Ireland in 2016. Following this I spent two years pursuing a career in the Food Industry as a member of the Quality Team and then moving departments to the New Product Development team. In September 2018, I decided to make the move to Worcester to complete my PGCE in Design and Technology: Food. The lecturers are extremely supportive, as they equipped us to become outstanding teachers, through delivering excellent subject sessions, seminars and guest speakers. I completed my teaching practice in two excellent schools with extremely supportive mentors.

I will always look back at the strategies I learnt throughout my teaching practice to continue progressing as a teacher. Now teaching in Northern Ireland, I consider my time in Worcester as the best decision I have ever made, as I can make a difference to young people's lives by providing valuable lifelong skills and promoting prospective success for all. I would encourage anyone that is thinking of becoming a teacher to make the move to Worcester and complete your PGCE there, as you will have the most memorable experience.

Entry requirements

What qualifications will you need?

Entry requirements

  • Honours degree (normally 2:2 or higher) from a UK higher education institution, or equivalent qualification, in design and technology or a related subject.
    Applicants with a 3rd class degree will be considered on an individual basis.
  • Grade C/level 4 at GCSE in English Language and Mathematics (or equivalent) (for 2021 entry, applicants must have these qualifications by the start of the course). Alternatively, we offer equivalency tests if you don’t have the required GCSE grade to apply for our courses. Trainees who begin courses before providing evidence of the required GCSE standard (or equivalent) will not be eligible for financial incentives, such as bursaries or grants, until they achieve the required standard.
  • School experience is desirable, but not essential prior to an interview. At interview we will discuss relevant prior school experience or opportunities applicants have had to work with school aged children. It is at this point that we would discuss with a candidate whether additional school experience would support an individual in their decision that teaching is right for them. NB Interviews will continue throughout 2020 and be conducted online. Applicants will be contacted directly with more details.

For further information contact

Qualifications not listed? Contact the Admissions Office for advice by email:

Other information

If you have lived, studied or worked overseas for three months or more in the last five years a Certificate of Good Conduct from the country of residence will be required. Further information and guidance associated with additional costs are available from the Home Office.

You will also be subject to the usual prohibition list and criminal record checks.

The DfE requires all trainee teachers to obtain an Enhanced Disclosure & Barring Service (DBS) check, which the applicant will need to pay for.

 School Information

  • 120 days of school experience in our partnership schools which are spread across the region. Experience in two schools.
  • Be supported and challenged by our blend of school-based Mentors and Personal Academic Tutors.
Course content

What will you study?

Our courses are informed by research and current developments in the discipline and feedback from students, external examiners and employers. Modules do therefore change periodically in the interests of keeping the course relevant and reflecting best practice. The most up-to-date information will be available to you once you have accepted a place and registered for the course. If there are insufficient numbers of students interested in an optional module, this might not be offered, but we will advise you as soon as possible and help you choose an alternative. 

Subject Knowledge with a Deep Understanding

  • Enrich your subject knowledge drawing on the expertise of tutors with national and international research profiles in partnership with school mentors with excellent current practice in your specialist area.
  • An excellent teacher requires confident subject knowledge and an understanding about how pupils learn. The majority of your time in university is in subject workshops.

Specialist Subject Opportunities

  • Further develop your own subject knowledge, linked to the school context, through designing and making in collaborative groups
  • Opportunities to engage with subject networks and associations.
  • Present to peers within and beyond the University.
  • Begin networking and start the publishing side of your career


  • Understand and apply theory and research on how children learn and develop.
  • Explore a range of learning and teaching styles, and classroom organisation.
  • Discover how to promote progress through observing, planning, teaching and assessing learning.

Professional Studies

  • Develop adaptive teaching strategies to respond to the unique needs in a range of contexts, leveraging the diversity inherent in schools.
  • Be informed by the research and evidence about effective teaching at a general level before applying this knowledge to subject-specific approaches
  • Learn the expectations, standards and behaviours which are appropriate to the profession and the wider responsibilities of a teacher.

Enhancement Activities

  • Gain expertise through one of our unique Enhancement Activities: PSHE and Citizenship, Developing a Second Subject, English as an Additional Language, Education in Climate Emergency, Teenage Mental Health, Special Educational Needs and Disabilities, Research in Education or Technology Enhanced Learning.  In addition we also offer an Aspiring Leaders programme 

Your career

  • Become a reflective self-evaluating practitioner.
  • Enjoy great employment prospects; our support takes you from trainee to ECT (Early Career Teacher) and beyond
  • Prepare for leadership and your Masters with 60 credits and a strong research foundation.

Working with local secondary schools

Working with local primary schools

Subject Knowledge Enhancement

Not sure about your subject knowledge?

Build up or refresh your existing knowledge with a subject knowledge enhancement (SKE) programme before the course.

Subjects offered:
English, mathematics, biology, chemistry, physics, computer science, design technology (food), French.

Find out about the bursary.

Register your interest

Enter your details below and we will keep you up to date with useful information about studying at the University of Worcester.

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Book your place at an Open Day

Want to know why so many students love living and studying in Worcester?

Our Open Days are the perfect way to find out.

Book your place
Teaching and assessment

How will you be taught?

PGCE Psychology students doing group practical work

Teaching approach

  • School experience in a range of settings.
  • Professional Studies sessions in school and at University.
  • University-led workshops, lectures, seminars, fieldwork and guest lectures.
  • Study of key texts and supplementary reading.
  • Participation in high level professional discussion, peer presentations and debate.
  • Directed studies, case studies and problem solving tasks; development of practice-based competence and skills of critical reflection through guided individual mentoring during placements.
  • One-to-one academic and personal tutorial support including access to our first class Firstpoint services
PGCE Psychology students doing practical group task


  • Assignments are carefully designed to develop your skills as a teacher.
  • Assessments that move from highly structured to more open briefs as you develop your professional skills.
  • The opportunity to develop skills as a research informed practitioner.

Programme specification

For comprehensive details on the aims and intended learning outcomes of the course, and the means by which these are achieved through learning, teaching and assessment, please download the latest programme specification document.

Meet the team

You will be taught by a teaching team whose expertise and knowledge are closely matched to the content of the modules on the course.

You can learn more about the staff by visiting our staff profiles.


Sue Parker-Morris

Sue is the PGCE secondary subject leader for design and technology (food). She left the catering industry to train as a Food Technology teacher in 1991 before teaching in secondary schools across the UK and New Zealand. Her experience includes middle management roles, leading and developing Food Preparation & Nutrition and teaching both Food and Textiles. She initially joined the university as an associate lecturer in 2018, continuing to teach, mentoring PGCE trainees and supporting NQTs before joining the tutor team full time in 2019.

In 2017, Sue established a ‘Food Cluster Group’ to support Food teachers in Worcestershire, Herefordshire, and Gloucestershire, in planning and moderating the Food Preparation & Nutrition GCSE. This successful network supports teachers professionally and personally as well as providing a further partnership with subject mentors across the Midlands.


Where could it take you?

PGCE student on placement
  • Great employment prospects (100% in 2015)
  • Prepare for leadership and your Masters with 60 credits and a strong research foundation
  • Many University of Worcester trainees gain promotion within the first few years of teaching
  • 2014 graduate won Outstanding Secondary NQT at The Arthur Terry Learning Partnership Showcasing Excellence - Outstanding in Education Awards 2015
Two students are walkng next to each other and smiling

Careers and Employability

Our Graduates pursue exciting and diverse careers in a wide variety of employment sectors.

Find out how we can support you to achieve your potential.

How much will it cost?

Full-time tuition fees

UK students

The standard tuition fee for full-time UK students registering in the academic year 2021/22 will be £9,250 per year.

For more details, please visit our course fees page.

International students

The standard tuition fee for full-time international students registering in the academic year 2021/22 will be £14,100 per year.

For more details, please visit our course fees page.

Teacher training funding

You can get help with the costs of teacher training. A student finance package will include a Tuition Fee Loan and a Maintenance Loan. You may also be eligible for extra help if you have children or have a disability.

Some courses are also eligible for a tax-free bursary or scholarship depending on your subject, degree classification or highest academic qualification.

Additional costs

Every course has day-to-day costs for essential books, trips, stationery, printing and photocopying.

Travel costs for placements vary depending on the location of schools and your mode of transport and sometimes, these may be reclaimed depending on your individual circumstances.

You will need to buy some protective clothing to wear for practical work (apron, overall or chefs jacket). You will also be expected to purchase materials and ingredients to make the products you will be teaching pupils to make.

In addition, we encourage you to join subject specific associations. The cost is typically between £25 to £50 for which you benefit from their support, guidance and resources.

The DfE requires all trainee teachers to obtain an Enhanced Disclosure & Barring Service (DBS) check, which you will need to pay for.


Finding the right accommodation is paramount to your university experience. Our halls of residence are home to friendly student communities, making them great places to live and study.

We have over 1,000 rooms across our range of student halls. With rooms to suit every budget and need, from our 'Traditional Hall' at £108 per week to 'En-suite Extra' at £184 per week (2021/22 prices).

For full details visit our accommodation page.

How to apply