Initial Teacher Education

Science: Biology, Chemistry or Physics Initial Teacher Education

Cell formationYour enthusiasm for science is the starting point for developing the skills and knowledge required to become an inspiring and engaging science teacher. You will bring the subject to life for the young people you work with in biology, chemistry and physics up to GCSE level and your specialism at Post 16/A level.

How you can expect to learn

Throughout this course you will be encouraged to critically engage with the issues around science education and to develop your own personal philosophy of teaching and learning. We seek to create a safe and open learning environment.

You will be encouraged to work creatively and imaginatively in exploring ways to bring the science curriculum to life in your classrooms. University science subject days will be largely spent in a group with all three science disciplines. However, you will also spend time working in specialism groups with a focus on teaching your chosen science.

We value practical learning in science and take full advantage of our purpose-built, classroom design laboratories. You will use the laboratories to learn about health and safety and risk assessments, teaching the required practical elements of the science curriculum, and enhancing learning in the subject through active, practical engagement. You are encouraged to practice any practical work in university before teaching them in school, and we are fully equipped to support you with this.


School of Education science laboratories used for teacher training.

Science lab in School of Education - tables, chairs, which board, displays on wall

Photo of a science lab in the School of Education, tables, chairs, white board, displays on walls


How you will be supported and developed

From the outset you will be part of a collaborative community of science teachers. You will draw on your experiences and the experiences of others to explore the key aspects of learning and teaching science.

In collaboration with experienced teachers in our partnership schools you will consider the everyday reality of teaching science, while at the same time exploring the challenges and issues underpinning science education in our fast-changing world.

Your subject knowledge (SK), both inside and outside of your specialism, will be developed throughout the course via specific SK sessions, engagement with specialist institutions such as the Institute of PhysicsPhysics PartnersAssociation for Science EducationRoyal Society of ChemistryScience and Plants for Schools and collaboration. We know that SK is something all science teachers aim to develop throughout their career and we will support you to develop effective, efficient and sustainable strategies to maintain and grow your knowledge and understanding, 

Wider opportunities

We are committed to providing equality in education for all children and therefore all our work will be underpinned by the promotion of social justice and concern for educating the whole child. The course will encourage you to explore different approaches to diversity and inclusion in science and consider the impact of current social issues on pupil engagement, participation, and attainment.

You will be able to work with children in alternative school settings to broaden your understanding of the challenges being navigated by teachers and children in schools today. We offer lots of wider opportunities to engage with science in different contexts, such as using the outdoor classroom, and planning science field trips.


The PGCE Science field trip 

Preston Montford Field Studies Centre
Friday 15 - Sunday 17 September 2023

All PGCE science students have the opportunity to take part in our field trip to Preston Montford Field Studies Centre. Over three days in September 2023, you will experience learning and teaching in the outdoor classroom whilst developing your subject knowledge up to A level content and get to know each other better at the start of the course. 

The trip has an inclusive cost of £85 and includes

  • fully risk assessed field activities delivered by experts
  • well equipped, WiFi-enabled classrooms, lecture rooms and laboratories
  • fully catered accommodation.

Students attending the course in 2022 told us that:

“The field trip was so beneficial and such a fun, enjoyable weekend! It provided biology subject knowledge and valuable planning, organisation and teaching skills which we had to put into practice over the course of the weekend”

“It was a great opportunity to get to know my course-mates early in the course. We spent our evenings socialising and playing games which was so much fun, and we all got on so well. This definitely gave me a solid group of friends on the course.”

“I would certainly recommend this field trip to anyone doing their Science PGCE, whichever specialisation you're in, as there is something for everyone and it's such a helpful, rewarding experience!”


Our trainee teachers are encouraged to reflect on their experiences in school to develop their understanding of teaching and how children learn science in schools. As their ‘teacher’, being part of this process is very exciting; hearing students make sense of their experiences in school using ideas from theory and practice, and then seeing them develop their own teaching in the classroom when we visit them in school is fantastic. 

Jo Hancock
Secondary PGCE Science Course Leader

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The university tutors take a student-first approach and genuinely care very deeply about you. I always felt very comfortable confiding in my tutor and was treated as though no problem was too big or too small. They go above and beyond to adjust the training programme to suit your needs.

Ben Hayes
Secondary PGCE Science

See all alumni profiles


School of Education

University of Nottingham
Jubilee Campus
Wollaton Road
Nottingham, NG8 1BB

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