Information you need for Postgraduate Certificate in Education - PGCE

Download thinking of teaching in 2025 leaflet.

Watch this admissions video, which was a webinar hosted by the Jakes Gerwel Fellowship Group. It is relevant to all prospective PGCE students.

To study to become a teacher at UCT, you will need to complete a bachelor’s degree (3 or 4 years’ study) followed by a one-year full-time Postgraduate Certificate in Education (PGCE is a teaching qualification).

The PGCE is NOT offered by distance-learning nor by correspondence studies.

PGCE entry requirements

There are two PGCEs: Senior Phase-FET and FET.

NB: We regret that the PGCE Foundation and Intermediate Phases is not on offer.
NB: Please note that the PGCE English FET-Only & Geography FET-Only methods subject (single teaching subject) will NOT be offered in 2025. History FET-Only will continue to be on offer in 2025.

      Steps to becoming a teacher at UCT

      Teaching in a primary school - not offered 

  • Foundation Phase (Grade 1 – 3) and Intermediate Phase (Grade 4 – 7) has been discontinued and is no longer offered by the School of Education at UCT.

    Teaching in a high school:

    Senior Phase-FET (Grades 8 – 12)  and/or  FET (Grades 10 – 12):

    • Your bachelor’s degree must include at least two subjects (from the list below), studied to at least second year level:  languages, mathematics, environmental and geographical sciences, historical studies, life sciences (botany & zoology), chemistry, physics, accounting, economics, music, fine art, dance, drama, computer science. However, a major in psychology is required for Life Skills teaching, and 1 year of mathematics is accepted for Mathematics Senior Phase & Maths Literacy FET.
    • FET only students take one method subject, i.e. History, Mathematics, Visual Arts and Design Studies, Dance Studies or Dramatics Arts.
    • Conversational Xhosa is required for the award of PGCE.; so, an introductory Xhosa course is strongly recommended as part of your undergraduate degree.


    1. Decide which phase you would like to teach.
    2. Choose an appropriate degree (study the UCT Faculty Fact Sheets and Handbooks.) Examples: (a) For a B.A if you want to teach SP-FET English and History; (b) a B.Sc if you want to teach SP Natural Science and FET Life Science; (c) a B.Com if you want to teach SP-FET accounting and economics; (d) a B.A in Music Education if you want to teach music. Before choosing your degree courses, it is strongly recommended that you consult the PGCE student advisor, Nicole Lesch (
    3. Contact the relevant faculty office (e.g., Humanities for B.A or B.SocSc ; Science for B.Sc, Commerce for B.Com) if you need general advice about the degree programmes.
    4. Apply to UCT to study the degree that you have chosen.
    5. Apply online for the PGCE as of April in your final year of undergrad.
    6. Applications are considered in order of receipt and admission to any PGCE will be closed when the available places have been filled. Early application is advised.
    7. Performance Arts Diploma applicants: Drama (advantageous to do TDP3010 & TDP3018)
    8. A person needs to obtain a minimum average results in undergraduate courses required for entry to the following teaching methods courses:              
  • 55%: Physical Sciences SP & FET (EDN3244W), Economics SP &FET (EDN3227W), Accounting SP& FET (EDN3222W), Xhosa SP &FET (EDN3247W) and Afrikaans SP & FET (EDN3223W);
  • 57%: Mathematics SP & FET (3240W) and Mathematics SP and Mathematics Literacy (EDN3248W)
  • 60%: Geography SP & FET (EDN3232W), Life Sciences FET (EDN3238W), Natural Sciences SP (EDN3243W), Life Skills (EDN3239W). 
  • 65%: History SP & FET (EDN3235W) and English SP & FET (EDN3229W)

NB! Please note that meeting the minimum admissions requirement does not guarantee admission into the PGCE.

PGCE applications open in April each year. The closing date is on 31 October. Please apply early.


  1. National Students Financial AID Scheme (NSFAS) has been re-instated for PGCE students. Visit their website for more information at
  2. The HCI Foundation offers bursaries to PGCE students. Applications for the new intake usually open in August-September. Queries can be directed to or 021 424 6010.

  3. Ikusasa Student Financial Aid Programme (ISFAP) funds the PGCE:  Note the FAQs: queries can be made directly to ISFAP at or or Ms Carmelita Lee Shong based at UCT.

       PGCE Admissions advisor:

Nicole Lesch
School of Education

6 Neville Alexander building
Lover's Walk
Lower Campus
Room 3.34