Postgraduate Certificate
in Teaching and Learning (
PGCertTL)

The Postgraduate Certificate in Teaching and Learning (PGCertTL) builds on the Learning about Learning pathway
to provide detailed pedagogical study of learning and teaching, opportunities for reflective practice, practical support and scholarship.
It is designed for colleagues who undertake university teaching or who support teaching and learning as a substantive part of their work.

The PGCertTL Programme is delivered online and is open to Heriot-Watt University staff teaching across all our campuses. It blends live and asynchronous collaborative work, practical micro-teaching sessions and observed practice, be that on campus or online, to facilitate the development and enhancement of teaching practice and of our students’ learning experiences.

The PGCertTL replaced the previous PGCiLT programme in September 2020.

The Postgraduate Certificate in Teaching and Learning (PGCertTL) is delivered over 2 years and comprises four courses:

  • Course 1: ‘Learning about learning’ (semester 1, year 1)
  • Course 2: ‘Reframing feedback and assessment’ (semester 2, year 1)
  • Course 3: ‘Exploring learning spaces’ (semester 1, year 2)
  • Course 4: ‘Scholarly inquiry into teaching and learning’ (semester 2, year 2)

The PGCertTL is aligned with the UK Professional Standards Framework for Higher Education.

Successful completion of the programme leads to Fellowship of AdvanceHE.

Is the PGCertTL programme for me?

The PGCertTL programme is designed for staff who require detailed pedagogic knowledge of learning and teaching. It is intended for staff for whom teaching and learning is a substantive part of their work

We expect that staff undertaking the PGCertTL programme might be in the following categories (these align with Descriptor 2 of the UK Professional Standards Framework):

  1. Early career academics.
  2. Academic-related and/or support staff holding substantive teaching and learning responsibilities.
  3. Experienced academics relatively new to UK higher education.
  4. Staff with (sometimes significant) teaching-only responsibilities including, for example, within work-based settings.

Entry criteria:

For entry to the PGCertTL programme you must meet both the minimum previous experience and the minimum current teaching requirements.

  1. Minimum of FTE 120 hours of prior teaching experience in higher education in any HEI; with substantive personal teaching responsibilities such as designing and delivering teaching sessions, setting and marking assessment (formative and/or summative), providing feedback to students, course development etc. AND
  2. Minimum of 5 hours per week teaching responsibilities for the full duration of the programme (2 years). This requirement reflects that this is a practice-based course and must have responsibility for design and planning of learning activities or programmes of study; design and marking of assessments, feedback to students and course development etc.

If there is a semester when you will not be teaching, please speak to the PGCertTL team to discuss whether the programme is right for you at this time.

Register your interest and apply

Before you apply, please read the PGCertTL Information sheet which provides further information on the course and a list of frequently asked questions.

Register your interest: To join the information list for future courses complete the Expression of Interest form. We will contact you when applications open or when Q&A sessions are available.

Apply: Application is through completion of an application form. You may also be invited to attend a short interview. Applications for the PGCertTL in AY21/22 closed on 2nd August 2021 for study commencing on 6th September 2021. Applications for AY22/23 will open in spring 2022.

If you are waiting for the next presentation of the Postgraduate Certificate in Teaching and Learning (PGCertTL) we recommend:

  1. Reading ‘In At The Deep End’,
  2. Participating in the New to Teaching Network, and
  3. Attending relevant LTA events in the interim.