PgCert Teaching and Learning in Higher and Professional Education

If you’re currently employed in teaching and learning in higher or professional education this HEA and NMC approved distance-learning programme offers you the opportunity to develop high quality skills in teaching, professional practice, scholarship and research. We’ll also support you to develop a critical approach to supporting student learning.

PgCert Teaching and Learning in Higher and Professional Education

Course details

This online course is designed for those seeking professional recognition as Associate Fellow or Fellow of the Higher Education Academy (HEA) or Teacher status with the Nursing and Midwifery Council (NMC). Underpinned by the relevant professional standards, it’s designed to help you attain professional recognition for your work, meet your organisational goals and enhance your professional profile.

This programme consists of two modules. The first, Teaching and Learning in Higher and Professional Education, is designed to help you learn how to plan for effective and inclusive teaching and learning environments. You’ll have the opportunity to study the theories, principles and application of teaching and learning strategies, as well as explore action learning, enquiry and work-based learning, and technology-enabled and reflective learning.

The second module, Professional Academic Practice in Action, gives you the opportunity to explore the nature of action research and its application to programme planning, design and evaluation in professional practice. This module also covers professional ethics, the policy context, and broader issues that impact upon professional academic practice within the higher education sector.

  • Location: The University of Bolton
  • Award: PgCert
  • Duration: 30 weeks

Course highlights:

  • The course is designed to help you develop a comprehensive understanding of the local and national context and trends across the sector.
  • By committing to ongoing critical reflection, evaluation and action, you could develop high-level scholarship and research-informed practice.
  • If eligible, you could gain professional recognition by acquiring a qualification in learning, teaching and assessment in higher or professional education.
  • Our supportive learning environments promote learning, equality of opportunity, and responsiveness to student diversity.

Key features:

  • You’ll have the chance to evaluate current developments, up-to-date research in teaching and learning, and your own professional practice.
  • Face-to-face sessions and one-to-one support is offered by our team of highly experienced, enthusiastic and dedicated experts.
  • Our academic team is actively involved in educational research, helping you to explore issues from a robust research-informed knowledge base.
  • Our well stocked library offers a comprehensive selection of relevant texts and access to an extensive online database of multimedia sources including eJournals, podcasts, vodcasts and eBooks.

Entry requirements

  • Location: The University of Bolton
  • Award: PgCert
  • Duration: 30 weeks

Normally, you’ll have at least an Upper Second Class (2.1) Honours degree (or equivalent). You must have a substantive role in teaching and/or facilitating learning and access to a mentor for support, review and verification of evidence from practice.

You must have the written support of your line manager in your employing organisation (or Head of School if you are a University of Bolton employee).

As this is an online course, you’ll need access to a computer with appropriate software. You’ll also need basic IT skills. In particular, you’ll need to be able to access and use the University of Bolton’s virtual learning environment, Moodle. Please contact the programme leader for details if you are uncertain that you’ll be able to meet these requirements.

You'll be required to attend for interview and provide a portfolio of appropriate work.

If English isn’t your first language you’ll also need IELTS 6.5 with normally no less than 6.0 in any band (or equivalent). Find out more

Career opportunities

This programme is designed for those who already have experience and current employment in teaching and learning in higher or professional education. It aims to help you to develop high quality teaching skills underpinned by relevant professional practice, scholarship and research skills. You should develop a critical, reflective and scholarly approach to teaching and supporting student learning.

Skills gained on this course can enhance your professional practice in a wide range of areas, including developing learning plans, creative and innovative methods for teaching, approaches to learner assessment and support, designing and managing programmes of learning and accountability in assessment. Additionally, it aims to develop your e-learning and communication skills.

What can I do with this qualification?

This course is designed to enhance your career potential by developing your skills as a member of academic staff in higher education institutions and could therefore improve your promotion prospects within higher education or improve access to a higher education career.

The skills and knowledge on offer would benefit anyone aiming for a career in education. Obtaining this qualification will assist entry to further study at Master’s or Doctorate level; for instance when applying to the University of Bolton’s MA Teaching and Learning or Doctorate programmes.

Alternative career options

  • Higher education
  • Education officer
  • Mentoring
  • Family liaison
  • Educational psychology
  • Education administration
  • Student services advice
  • Student liaison
  • Educational writing and journalism
  • Examinations
  • Counselling
  • Careers guidance
  • Training
  • Quality Standards

Professional recognition

Our Postgraduate Certificate in Teaching and Learning in Higher and Professional Education is informed by the UK Professional Standards Framework (UK PSF) for Teaching and Supporting Learning in Higher Education and the NMC (2008) Standards to Support Teaching and Assessment in Practice - NMC Teacher.

The programme has been approved by the Higher Education Academy (HEA) for those seeking professional recognition as Associate Fellow or Fellow of the HEA.

The course is also approved by the Nursing and Midwifery Council as a route to Teacher status.

Fees & funding

No fee information is currently available, please contact Student Data Management on 01204 903059 or for more information

The fees for a student’s course of study will be set for the normal duration of that course subject only to inflationary increases – measured by the Consumer Price Index (CPI) recorded in March each year to take effect for subsequent start dates.

The University is currently awaiting Government guidelines as to EU fee charges for students commencing study in 2019/20.

UK undergraduate tuition fees are subject to UK government approval and are subject to the outcome of the Teaching Excellence Framework.

How to apply


Call Admissions

Please contact Admissions by telephone on 01204 903903 or email

University of Bolton
Deane Road
Bolton, BL3 5AB
United Kingdom

Tel: 01204 903903


International applications are not possible for this course

As an international student you are not allowed to study this course because of the restrictions on your visa.

We offer a wide range of full-time courses in lots of different subjects, many of our courses start in September and January. If you would like to see what courses are available please visit our Course Search.

Teaching & assessment


Modules listed below are a mixture of compulsory and optional. You may not have the opportunity to study all the modules as part of the course.

  • Teaching and Supporting Learning in Higher and Professional Education
  • Professional Academic Practice in Action

Teaching, learning and assessment

Two core modules will be taught, each worth 30 credits at HE7 (Master’s level). Throughout the course, we aim to deliver stimulating, challenging and engaging programmes of study that help you broaden and deepen your knowledge.

By building on your current knowledge and experience with informed research, this course is designed to help you develop the skills needed to study at Master’s level. You’ll be exposed to a mix of subject knowledge, theoretical perspectives and professional best practices, using a wide variety of teaching and learning strategies to enhance your overall experience.

To help keep you engaged, we’ll use a range of teaching and learning methods, such as lectures, presentations, seminars, workshops, group work, action learning, and group and individual tutorials. This course also features the use of technology and multimedia: resources are made available through our virtual learning environments (VLEs), and much of the course communication will also be conducted via VLEs.

You’ll also be encouraged to build strong relationships with your peers, sharing ideas and discussing relevant ideas for practice and development. Personal study time is also a significant element in this programme.

Assessment will also be varied, and you can expect to complete coursework such as critical reflections, presentations, portfolios and a written project.


The university will use all reasonable endeavours to deliver your course as described in its published material and the programme specification for the academic year in which you begin your course. Please be aware that our courses are subject to review on an ongoing basis. The content of course modules and mode of associated assessments may be updated on an annual basis. This is to ensure that all modules are up to date and responsive to employment and sector needs. The published course material and the programme specification contain indicative ‘optional modules’ that may be subject to change due to circumstances outside of our control. For this reason we cannot guarantee to run any specific optional module.

Assessment methods

Level Assessment method
Level One Coursework (80%), Practical exams (20%)

Learning activities

Level Learning activity
Level One Guided independent study (88%), Scheduled learning and teaching activities (12%)

Contact The University

Key facts

  • Course type:
  • Location:
    The University of Bolton
  • Award:
  • Duration:
    30 weeks

Contact us

Duncan Cross
Programme Leader
Telephone: +44 (0)1204 903289

Enquiry Team
University of Bolton
Telephone: +44 (0)1204 903903