This course is still open for entry in September 2024 – please visit our Clearing and Late Application page.

Postgraduate Taught

PGDE Secondary (Home Economics)

Are you looking for a change of career? Why not consider becoming a Home Economics teacher in a secondary school? If you are a health sciences, hospitality, food or science-related graduate this course is the first step to a new inspiring, challenging and socially empowering career.

Our one-year PGDE in Home Economics course will prepare you to teach home economics in Scottish secondary schools and beyond, providing you with an internationally recognised secondary teaching qualification.

If you are passionate about food and textiles, sustainability, social justice and health and wellbeing then there has never been a more important time to learn the necessary skills, knowledge and understanding to enable you to transform young lives and contribute to both community and global wellbeing. As a graduate of our unique course, you will help to prepare young people to face the challenges of 21st century citizenship. 

Did you know that the Scottish Government is providing £20k bursaries to help career changers retrain as home economics teachers? Please visit the Teaching Bursary website for more information on eligibility and how to apply.

Why QMU?

  • Guaranteed employment for one year following graduation: Scottish students are guaranteed paid employment for one year in a Scottish secondary school as a home economics teacher if they choose to follow the GTCS Teacher Induction Scheme route.
  • Historic and current expertise: Study at a university with an unrivalled 145-year history of teaching in this field. QMU is well known for its work in food research, and hosts the Scottish Centre for Food Development and Innovation.
  • Staff expertise: Our staff are either qualified Home Economics teachers or secondary education specialists who have many years of experience in supporting students entering the teaching profession.
  • Range of learning experiences: As well as offering you the opportunity to learn how to teach practical food, nutrition, and textiles skills in a classroom context you will engage creatively with the role of outdoor learning in the HE curriculum, gaining experience of cooking outdoors in our special campus Outdoor Learning space.
  • Make a difference: Learn to teach a subject with the power to shape young persons’ lives and society’s public health. As a graduate of this course you will be an advocate for sustainable lifestyles and health and wellbeing.  
  • Professional accreditation/registration: The course is accredited by the General Teaching Council for Scotland (GTCS). As a graduate you will be eligible to register with the GTCS to teach anywhere in Scotland.

Interview with a student

More about PGDE Secondary (Home Economics) and what you will achieve

The PGDE Secondary (Home Economics) course will engage you in a critical understanding of contemporary ‘real world’ issues from ‘sustainable’ food production and consumption, through textiles consumerism issues including the impact of fast fashion on the environment . Furthermore, with a rising demand for food banks, the impact of food poverty on society has never been more prevalent and thus you will consider critically children’s rights and how to plan for inclusive practice to enable all young people to participate and have the positive learning experiences they deserve. You will also learn about the role you can play as a Home Economics teacher to drive forward the discipline within its contemporary social, cultural, and political contexts.

Professional enquiry is an important aspect of the teacher’s role. On our course we will teach you how to conduct classroom research to enable you to make evidence-based decisions in support of pupils’ learning.

How will I be taught?

Structure and exit award

PGDE (120 credits) with the possibility of 80 credits at Masters’ Level 11.

Teaching, learning and assessment

Teaching consists of independent and collaborative learning in workshops. You will engage in research and produce three written assignments and one Individual presentation all of which will be either assessed at Levels 11 (Masters’ degree level) or Level 10.

Assessments are designed to:

  • optimise accessibility for students with a range of strengths and abilities;
  • provide variety of opportunity to be challenged and to excel;
  • engage students in the importance of being literate and communicative in a range of formats and media; and
  • model and demonstrate assessment procedures for student teachers so that they can incorporate into their own teaching practices. 

The PGDE shares the pedagogic approach of the other courses in the Division of Psychology, Sociology and Education, foregrounding:

  • critical thinking
  • student collaboration
  • independent learning
  • involvement with global real-world issues
  • interprofessional, interdisciplinary learning
  • practical experience, experiential learning and critical reflection
  • practical upskilling in food and textiles
  • peer/group work
  • enquiry-based learning
  • debate and contention
  • outdoor learning activities


Placements are an invaluable way of building on your theoretical learning and seeing the evidence of how teaching Home Economics can benefit young people.

You will complete an 18-week placement in two different secondary schools in Scotland. Placements are generated through the GTCS Student Placement System (SPS) and are based on a student’s term time address. Students may be required to travel within a 90 minutes radius to their placement and travel expenses are self-funded. 

Please see the 'Entry requirements and application information' tab for information on costs related to placements. 

Teaching hours and attendance

This is a full-time, demanding course, lasting 36 weeks in total, split into 18 weeks of campus teaching and online learning and 18 weeks on placement.

Class sizes

We have an upper limit of 28 students per course.

Teaching staff

You can read more about the teaching staff on this course at the bottom of this page. Please note that teaching staff is subject to change.


  • Reflective and Critical Practice (Placement modules) (40 credits): This module has a particular focus on your achieving the GTCS Standard for Provisional Registration. This module is Assessed by observation of teaching practice in Schools at SCQF Level 10 and through your maintaining an e-portfolio of evidence-based practice.
  • Home Economics in the 21st Century (40 credits): This module aims to equip you with the skills to teach practical food and textiles lessons within Home Economics Departments in a Secondary School context and to engage critically with research to inform your approaches to transformative learning in schools.  Assignments are research based and one is a recorded presentation, the other an essay. Both elements must be passed to achieve this module.
  • Education: Theory, Practice & Research (1) (20 credits): This module will develop your critical and reflective skills in the context of classroom-based research and enquiry through your producing a literature review as a focus for your practice-based research.
  • Education: Theory, Practice & Research (2) (20 credits): This module will develop your skills in how to undertake classroom research. You will create a plan for a research proposal and present this to a live audience.

NB The modules listed are correct at time of posting (October 2023) but may be subject to change. In the event that modules change, QMU will seek to use reasonable endeavours to ensure that there is no detrimental impact on students.

Careers and working as a teacher

Scottish students are guaranteed a job for one year in a Scottish school following graduation as part of the GTCS Teacher Induction Scheme. After graduating, candidates register with the GTCS for provisional registration and on successful completion of a probationary teaching year will be awarded full registration.

When a person successfully completes a teacher education programme at a Scottish university they will receive a teaching qualification. By law they must register with the GTCS before they can be employed as a teacher in a Scottish education authority nursery, primary, secondary or special school.

Newly qualified teachers in their probation year currently start on a salary of £32,217 Scotland. Secondary teachers are awarded an additional £8,000 if they choose to complete their probationary year anywhere in Scotland. Once you are fully registered, this increases incrementally over the first six years to £48,516 (EIS, 2023).
The Teacher Induction Scheme offers a guaranteed one-year training post to every eligible student graduating with a teaching qualification from one of Scotland’s universities.

Visit In2Teaching's Teacher Induction Scheme webpages for more information.

PGDE Secondary (Home Economics): Entry requirements and application information

Entry requirements

Successful applicants must, as a minimum, meet the requirements as set by the Memorandum on Entry Requirements to Courses of Initial Teacher Education in Scotland produced by the General Teaching Council for Scotland (GTCS), which specifies general entrance requirements for all applicants and subject-specific requirements for secondary applicants. Shortlisted applicants will be invited for an interview.

The minimum entry requirements are:

  • A degree validated by a higher education institution in the United Kingdom (UK) or a degree of an equivalent standard from an institution outside the UK.
  • Applicants must have a degree with 80 SCQF credit points including 40 SCQF credit points at SCQF Level 8 (or above) from at least two of: consumer studies; food studies; food technology; textile technology; and nutrition.
  • The other 40 credits can come from the above or any of the other five relevant areas outlined below:

1. Family Studies: parenting, childhood studies, family lifestyles, socioeconomic influences or environmental issues

2. Food Science: food chemistry, composition of foods, processing and manufacturing of foodstuffs, functional properties of foods, biotechnology or microbiology.   

3. Health: health promotion, health education, determinants of health, lifestyles and health, environmental issues, or health and food policies.

4. Hospitality: practical food preparation skills, food preparation techniques or food and beverage management.

5. Textile Studies: textile construction, properties, finishes, contemporary developments, production systems, textile futures or design technologies.


• A National Qualification in English at SCQF Level 6, for example:
- Higher English Grade C or
- A Level English, Grade D or
- GCSE English Language AND English Literature, at 4/C IN BOTH or
- Irish Leaving Certificate Higher English at Grade H4/C2

NB: Higher ESOL is acceptable for entry to PGDE courses only. It is not accepted for entry to BA (Hons) Education Studies (Primary).


• A National Qualification in Mathematics at SCQF Level 5, for example:
- Standard Grade/Int 2/National 5 Mathematics Grade C or
- GCSE Mathematics at 4/C or
- Irish Leaving Certificate Mathematics Ordinary Grade 3/B3

NB: National 5 Lifeskills/Applications Mathematics is accepted in place of National 5 Mathematics.

International: You will be required to provide evidence of English language competence at no less than IELTS 6.5 with no individual component score less than 6.0.

Accreditation of prior learning: You may be granted exemption from studying a module or modules up to a maximum of 60 credit points, provided you can demonstrate successful achievement of all the learning outcomes.

Other requirements

  • A satisfactory criminal records check from the Protection of Vulnerable Groups (PVG) Scheme.

Disability/health conditions:

If you have a disability, long-term physical or mental health condition, or learning disability, it should not stand in the way of your studying at QMU. However, if you are not sure whether your disability might be a barrier in your studies or in relation to the professional standards, please contact the disability service who will be able to have a conversation with you about reasonable adjustments and supports available to you.

Other costs

  • The additional costs associated with placement travel and accommodation are the responsibility of the student.
  • The cost of the PVG check is the responsibility of the student. Please see PG 2024 fees page on our website.

Applying for this course

You should apply for this course as part of the UCAS undergraduate scheme before 31 January 2024. Late applications may be accepted if space remains, please  contact Admissions to check.

UCAS code: 0001

So that we can fully consider your application, you will need to provide supporting documents to QMU's Admissions team as soon as you have applied. Failure to provide these means we will be unable to assess your application.

Please contact Admissions provide the following:

• Your degree certificate (if already awarded)
• Your academic transcript listing all the modules you have completed
• Evidence of Higher English (or equivalent) if already awarded
• Evidence of National 5 Maths (or equivalent) if already awarded

Application deadline

This course is still open for an August 2024 start.

Terms and Conditions

The delivery of this course is subject to the terms and conditions set out in our 2024/25 Entry - Terms and Conditions (Postgraduate).

More information and QMU contacts

For admissions or eligibility enquiries, please contact Admissions

Alternatively please contact Linda Craig (Programme Leader)

Become your best you: study at QMU

Course Overview

On campus at QMU and on placement
1 year full time
Start Date
August 2024
Fees & Funding
SCQF Level
Student pouring milk into a pot while a teacher smiles beside her
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