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Primary PGCE Placements

School-based work placements during the course (excluding Anticipating Practice) take place in partner schools across the South West: in Devon, Cornwall, Dorset and Somerset, subject to availability.  There is the opportunity for primary trainees to apply for summer placements in our partner schools in London (more information is provided about this opportunity once you start the PGCE and applications are received in the Autumn term).

The PGCE Primary programme includes the following periods of school-based work.  They are:

1. Anticipating Practice (2 weeks of preliminary experience
in school settings):

05 - 16 September 2022
2. Autumn Placement (school 1): 07 November - 18 November 2022

3. Spring Placement:
(school 1 placement + transition to school 2):

03 January – 31 March 2023
4. Summer Placement (school 2): 17 April – 28 June 2023

In addition, there are five seminar days where trainees return to the St Luke’s campus – 20 January 2023, 10 February 2023, 10 March 2023, 28 April 2023 and 29 June 2023.

The majority of PGCE trainees will need to secure accommodation within the private sector.

To assist you to find housing during the autumn term when you are based at the university, the Accommodation Office canvases local residents for information about suitable vacancies and advertises these details via our studentpad site. Please see for more information.

For the majority of both the spring and summer terms, trainees will be on placement.  Many PGCE placements will be at a distance from Exeter, thus trainees may choose to move area for their school-based work placements, or arrange to commute daily. Most trainees wait until the Autumn term to arrange their accommodation for their school-based work when they have met other trainees going to the same school or area. To help with this, once you start the course, you will have access to a list of short-term accommodation throughout the region. Although not vetted by the University, the details in this list have been passed to us by schools, private individuals and former trainees and have been helpful in the past in assisting trainees and groups of trainees find accommodation for the spring/summer terms.

It is strongly recommended that trainees do not buy a house or take out a long-term rental agreement for accommodation in any area before receiving placement information from the ITE Partnership Office. Please also be aware that even after you have received information about your placements, they are only provisional as circumstances can change causing schools to pull out of agreed placements well into the PGCE year.

The Partnership Office will ask you to provide details about your circumstances and placement preferences to help them when allocating your placements. If you have not received this request from them, please contact the Partnership Office on  We aim to advise trainees of their placement schools by the end of July. If your circumstances change after you have submitted your information, please do inform the Partnership Office as soon as possible.

Please see our Placement FAQs document for more information about the placement allocation process.‌

We offer a contribution to some of the travel and accommodation costs that PGCE trainees may incur as a result of the structure of the training year.  The policy is available on the Graduate School of Education website here. Please read the policy carefully to see what it does and doesn’t cover.  If you have any questions about this policy in advance of starting the programme, please contact the Info at St Luke’s team on