BlogUniversityWhat It’s Like Studying a Bachelor of Education (Primary) at UQ

What It’s Like Studying a Bachelor of Education (Primary) at UQ

UQ Primary Education - Fact Sheet

Are you wondering what it means to study a Bachelor of Education (Primary) at UQ?

Curious about what the classes entail, what the vibe on campus is like and where this degree can take you in the future? Well, look no further, because we’ve got you covered!

We’re about to unpack all of that in this article. So, let’s jump right into it!

What is a Bachelor of Education (Primary) at UQ?
Core Units for this Degree
How to Get into Primary Education at UQ
What’s the Teaching Format?
What’s the Faculty and Culture Like?

What is a Bachelor of Education (Primary) at UQ?

A Bachelor of Education (Primary) at UQ is designed to teach students everything they need to know to be proficient primary-level educators. You will become experts in literacy and numeracy, leadership and research, and become well-versed in the effective use of communication and information technologies.

If you like the idea of shaping the minds of younger generations and introducing them to the basics of maths and english, science and art — then this is the course for you!

Career Paths 

While most students of this degree pursue primary school teaching after graduating, this is not the only option available to them!

UQ equips its students with the knowledge and skills to excel in various professional roles, including:

  • Primary school teacher
  • Education assistant
  • Learning enhancement teacher
  • Distance education teacher
  • Curriculum planner
  • Pedagogy leader

Further study opens up even more options, such as head of department, principal, guidance officer, learning support teacher or student adviser.

Learn about various careers you could end up in with a Bachelor of Education here!

Core Units for this Degree

For a Bachelor of Education (Primary) at UQ, each subject equates to two units or credit points. To graduate, students must complete 54 units worth of core courses, six units of their chosen minor and four units worth of electives.  

First Year

In their first year, students can expect to complete a lot of introductory classes which unpack everything they need to know about teaching and education. Classes like Sociological Orientation to Education and Early Years Curriculum and Pedagogical Foundations explain the theoretical components of educating, so that students have a strong foundational knowledge of the practice. 

In the second semester of first year, students begin completing units for their minor.

Second Year

Second year sees students undertaking subjects such as Multilingualism and Education, which teaches them how to cater for the needs of children from a diverse range of backgrounds.

Students also learn how to teach numeracy to primary-aged students in Teaching Mathematics in Primary Context 1.

Third Year

In third year, students complete Building Inclusive Primary Classrooms, where they are taught how to foster supportive and nurturing teaching environments for students.

This year also sees students learn how to incorporate humanities and social sciences into their curriculum.

Fourth Year

This final year shows students how to teach subjects such as art and health to primary students. 

In addition to this, fourth year students complete Teachers as Professionals, a class which explains the importance of professional and ethical conduct as a way to improve student learning and educational outcomes.

Are there any majors?

While students cannot choose a major, they do have the opportunity to select a minor.

In the second semester of first year, students can choose to specialise in English and literacy, humanities and social sciences, mathematics and numeracy, or science.

UQ Primary Education - Quote

Placements

The Bachelor of Education (Primary) at UQ involves a lot of placement blocks. They are an integral part of this degree as they offer students the chance to observe and experience real teaching environments and implement the theoretical components of the course in practical settings. 

These placements are an annual feature of the degree and always occur in the second semester. Students begin with a ten-day placement in first year, a three-week placement block in second year, a four-week block in third year and a seven-week placement in their final year.

According to Georgia, all placements are organised by the extremely helpful School of Education Placements Team.

How to Get into Primary Education at UQ

The ATAR cut off for entry into Primary Education at UQ is 76.

Prerequisites 

On top of this, students are required to complete one General English subject, one Mathematics subject and one Science selection — Biology, Chemistry, Physics, Agricultural Science, Marine Science, Earth and Environmental Science or Psychology. 

Additionally, UQ has a range of inherent requirements students must meet in order to graduate. Some of these include things like ethical behaviour, behavioural stability and communication. It is highly recommended that prospective students read through this list before applying for the course. 

To check out the full list of inherent requirements, visit this page.

Alternate Pathways/Adjustment Programs

If you’re worried about not meeting these prerequisites — you can stop right now! 

UQ has a whole range of adjustment programs and alternate pathways to help you gain entry into your dream degree. 

Bridging courses are available to help students meet subject prerequisites. Through UQ College you can complete intensive bridging courses in Mathematics, Chemistry and Biology. These are held over 4 weeks in November/December each year, meaning that you can complete one of these over the summer and still make it in time for the January QTAC major offer round!

Scholarships

There are plenty of scholarships available to students studying a Bachelor of Education (Primary) at UQ. They are awarded to students for various reasons ranging from academic excellence, financial hardship and sporting success. Whatever your situation, you’re bound to find a scholarship that fits you!

Some of the scholarships on offer include:

You can find the complete list of scholarships available here!

What’s the Teaching Format?

UQ follows a semester structure. This means that the year is separated into two teaching blocks, with a large break in between.

A student studying full-time can expect to complete 40 hours of study per week. This includes lectures, tutorials, self-directed study and working on assignments.

Class Structure

UQ Primary Education - Class Structure

Lectures

Lectures are weekly presentations given by accomplished academics which cover all of the important content for that week. Usually the entire cohort of about 60 students attends these lectures, whether that be in-person or online.

Students are encouraged to take lots of notes and jot down any questions they may have so that they can discuss these in their tutorials.

Tutorials 

Tutorials are a space for students to further unpack the content taught in lectures. To groups of about 20 to 25 students, key concepts from lectures are further explained by tutors in a class-like setting.

These normally run for 1-2 hours and are a great opportunity for students to ask questions or seek extra help.

Workshops

Education students can also expect to attend workshops at some point in their degree. While they are not used for every unit, certain classes use workshops in place of tutorials.

Workshops operate similarly to tutorials, hosting roughly the same number of students and covering content touched on in lectures. However, workshops differ slightly in the sense that they involve higher levels of collaboration from students via group work and discussion activities.

Assessments 

Most of the core courses are assessed using an assignment format. These assignments often focus on lesson and unit planning — two practices that are a super important skill for teachers.

You can also expect to have a few group assignments and a couple of quizzes.

Skills You Refine and Learn

UQ Primary Education - Skills

A Bachelor of Education (Primary) at UQ teaches its students a whole range of important skills, equipping students with everything they need to know to become a great primary school teacher. 

“You learn the art of professionalism, and are treated like a professional from day one. Small things, like being referred to as ‘pre-service teachers’ and not just students, really helps get you into this mindset early and boosts your self-efficacy.” — Georgia Nielsen

You learn to communicate effectively, to be creative in your approach to teaching and highly organised in your day to day dealings. 

What’s the Faculty and Culture Like?

The Education cohort is said to be really wonderful. It is a slightly smaller cohort than most courses and so everyone is quite close. There are Facebook groups and group chats you can join, where everyone helps each other out and leans on one another for support.

The faculty is incredible as well. They are all very friendly and keen to see students passionate about their degree. The staff are all super knowledgeable and experienced, everyone more than willing to answer questions and offer up some sagely advice.

Georgia also says that the campus is “absolutely gorgeous”.

There are lots of great open spaces with the Great Court and UQ Lakes. Along with this, there are countless food options for students to choose — for all those very important study snacks and lunch catch-ups with friends. There is even the occasional food truck on campus, so you never have to worry about being short of options!

Societies 

A society that is highly recommended for all Education students is the UQ Education Society. By being part of this group, you get discounted access to all sorts of academic, professional and social events. Getting involved in societies such as this is a great way to network and form really strong friendships.

“Overall, UQ Education Society is the best all-round society for education students. However, you can also join societies tailored to your specialty area and interests, such as UQ Modern History Society, UQ Music Students Society, or UQ English and Literature Society just to name a few!” — Georgia Nielsen

Resources

UQ has a tonne of resources available to students throughout their studies. One worth mentioning for future students is the Jump Start Academic Preparation Program (JSAPP). This week-long program offers guidance and support for first-year students, helping them better understand what to expect from their time at university.


Jessica Arentz is a Content Writer at Art of Smart and an undergraduate student at the University of Sydney where she studies a Bachelor of Arts/Advanced Studies (Media and Communications) (Marketing). She currently volunteers at 2SER community radio station as a producer and newsroom reader. When not writing, you can find Jess searching the web for cheap flights or spending her days with her head buried deep in a book.

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