The Faculty of Education at Nelson Mandela University is an important role-player in Initial Teacher Education, particularly in meeting urgent educational needs in the Eastern Cape.  It aims to further strengthen Initial Teacher Education in South Africa and address the dire need for ‘more teachers’ and ‘better teachers’, particularly at secondary school level.  The Post Graduate Certificate in Education (PGCE) thus aims to provide students with relevant and appropriate knowledge and the necessary theoretical and practical skills, experience and expertise demanded of secondary school teachers to teach in the diverse range of schools in South Africa.

Vision and Mission

To be a dynamic community of teachers, leaders and scholars in education, committed to creating a vibrant, socially just and democratic society.


We are committed to cultivating passionate, engaged, knowledgeable, effective and compassionate teachers, researchers and leaders into

· Critical thinkers, and

· Agents of hope, change and social justice


· Practising humanising pedagogies;

· Establishing collaborative partnerships with relevant stakeholders, participating students, schools, communities, alumni and government;

· Using future-oriented technologies creatively, and

· Bringing the classroom into the world and the world into the classroom.


Programme purpose and duration

The PGCE is a one-year professional teaching qualification. It is offered on a full-time basis at the Nelson Mandela University’s South Campus in Port Elizabeth. PGCE graduates will be equipped to teach either:

· Two subjects at FET level (grade 10 to 12) OR

· One subject at FET level (grade 10 to 12) and one subject at Senior Phase level (grade 7 to 9).

Successful completion of the PGCE will allow candidate’s admission to the B Ed Hons or Postgraduate Diploma in Education (NQF level 8).


Programme objectives

The PGCE programme aims to:

· Develop and consolidate both subject knowledge and pedagogical content knowledge.

· Cultivate a practical understanding of teaching and learning in a diverse range of South African schools, in relation to education theory, subject specialisation, practice and policy.

· Enable students to organise systematic learning for diverse learners in diverse contexts by applying humanising pedagogies.

· Foster self-reflexivity, self-understanding, creativity and resilience.

· Develop an understanding of, and commitment to the ideals of the teaching profession.

· Nurture in students the disposition of an active change agent.

 School Based Learning (Teaching Practice experience)

In order to meet the requirements of the PGCE qualification, all students are required to spend dedicated, supervised time in schools. During SBL, students are introduced to experiential learning in school based classrooms to provide them with a holistic approach to teaching.


Admission requirements

 The minimum entry requirement is an approved undergraduate Bachelor’s degree.

· PGCE (FET) - To specialise in two FET school subjects, the basic Bachelors qualification should include at least two school approved specialisation subjects at third year level (NQF 7).

· PGCE (SP-FET) - To specialise in one SP subject and one FET subject, the basic Bachelors qualification should include at least one school approved specialisation subject at third year level (NQF 7) and one school approved subject at second year level.

 · Applicants must have obtained a minimum average of 60% for their undergraduate degree.

· Applicants may only choose method combinations within the subject streams specified in the table below.


Subject Specialisation requirements:

· English Home Language—Applicants must have English literature modules up to third year level.

· Life Orientation — Applicants must have obtained a minimum average of 60% for  Psychology modules completed in their undergraduate qualification

· Economic Management Science — Applicants must have obtained a minimum average of 60% for  the  commerce modules completed in their undergraduate qualification (Accounting, Business Studies, Economics).

NOTE: Any method subject in the PGCE programme will only be offered if a minimum of 20 students register for the method subject.



FET Accounting
FET Business Studies
FET Economics
FET Mathematics
SP Economic Management Science (EMS)
FET Afrikaans Home Language
FET English Home Language
FET isiXhosa Home Language
FET Geography
FET History
FET Life Orientation
FET Music
SP Creative Arts
FET Geography
FET Life Science
FET Mathematics
FET Physical Science
SP Natural Science



Contact information
Dr Badroen Ismail
Tel: 041 504 4016

Ms Pamela Roach
Programme Administrator: Secondary School Education
Tel: 041 504 4026