PG Diploma Early Years with ITT

The Structure of the Interview Day

We look forward to welcoming you to the University of St Mark & St John for your interview day and hope that you will gain much from the experience. The day is important for both you and for us as it is important that we see if you are suitable for the course you have applied for, but equally that you find out if this is the place you want to study.

During the day you will have the opportunity to look round the University and find out more about the course and meet tutors. We want you to present yourself in the best light on the day and we aim to make you feel comfortable and welcome.

The Group Session

The interview day begins with an information group session which looks at the programme aims, structure and delivery. You will have the opportunity to meet other candidates and the Programme Leader. This is an informal session in which there will be lots of opportunity to ask questions as we feel it is important for you to be clear that this is the right programme for you.

There will also be an information session on the Early Years Teacher Standards and an opportunity to discuss the placement /work-based elements of the programme. The group session concludes with a campus tour to see our excellent facilities

The Individual Interview

You will be interviewed by a member of the course teaching team and an employer representative and will be asked a number of questions which are designed to ascertain if you are a suitable candidate for Early Years teaching and for this postgraduate course. The individual interview has two parts:

  • Part 1: You will be asked to give an informal talk on ‘Why I want to be an Early Years Teacher’, which will be the first item in your interview with the employer representative. This is not a formal presentation, you do not need to prepare any materials in advance, it is more about giving you an opportunity to begin the interview by talking about your motivation and passion for teaching within Early Years. Following your informal talk, the interviewer will ask you some focused questions about your past practice experience.
  • Part 2: You will be interviewed by a member of the teaching and the focus of this will be on your readiness to study at post graduate level.

Both parts are informed by a set interview schedule. The overall interview will last around 30 minutes.

How Candidates will be assessed

Each candidate will be assessed on the following:

  • Appropriate qualities, attitudes, ethics and values
  • Subject Knowledge and Experience

Learn Direct: message to ITT applicants on skills tests

A recent announcement by the Department for Education about changes to the Professional Skills Tests for QTS, which we hope is of help to everyone:

The changes, which are outlined below, will come into effect on 14 February 2018. If you have booked tests prior to the changes being made we want to encourage you to take those tests as planned. Below are some FAQs which we hope will address any queries you may have.

What are the changes?

The limit of 3 test attempts per subject is being removed. As of 14 February 2018 you will have unlimited attempts to achieve a test pass. This means that the 2 year lockout period will also be removed.

Currently all candidates have one test booking free of charge, per subject. From 14 February 2018, all candidates will be able to book three tests per subject, free of charge. A charge will be applied from the fourth test attempt per subject.

What happens if I have a test booked between the announcement and the start date for the new policy?

If you paid for and took a second or third attempt at a test on or after the 24 October 2017 and before 14 February 2018, you will automatically receive a refund for the cost of your test. Refunds will be paid to candidates by 31 March 2018 and funds will be returned to the credit or debit card used to pay for the test. If you have not received the refund by 31 March 2018 then please call the helpline on 0300 303 9613.

If you fail your test for a third time before 14 February 2018 then your account will lock, but it will unlock automatically on 14 February 2018 and you will be able to access your account and continue to book tests as normal. You will also be able to take up to three more test bookings, free of charge per subject.

I took tests before 24 October 2017. Why am I not getting a refund?

This change applies to all bookings placed after the start of the 2018 recruitment cycle. We are unable to issue or agree refunds for tests prior to this date.

I was locked out of my account after three failed attempts at the skills tests. I am still interested in training to teach, so what should I do next?

Once the 2-year lockout period is removed on 15 February 2018, candidates will be able to take unlimited tests. The key to passing is plenty of preparation and practice. You can complete a free, fully interactive online practice test, which will help you to familiarise yourself with the test format. Simply follow the instructions on this page.

If you have not yet registered with Get Into Teaching, sign up to receive free support throughout your Initial Teacher Training application.

The press release about the announced changes  is available here.

The entry requirements to access training remain unchanged; candidates will still have to pass the skills tests prior to starting their Initial Teacher Training course. These changes simply remove financial and administrative barriers. Please note that the skills test passes for applicants to ITT courses continues to be valid for three years. In the event that an ITT course starts after the three years have elapsed, the candidates will have to re-take the tests.