Further information

Course Directors
Dr Mark Anderson and Dr Tiffany Chiu

Administration enquiries

Course outline and context

The PG Cert is the first stage of a three-stage approach to the study of teaching and learning in the University setting. It is a practice-centred flexible course that develops participants as reflective practitioners and builds on the introductory workshops and participants’ previous experience. The second stage is the Postgraduate Diploma. This is also practice-based, but allows and encourages participants to expand their knowledge of teaching beyond their actual experience by critical engagement with wider educational theory. The last stage, a full MEd programme provides training and support in education research methodology and allows participants to investigate and inform their practice with valid educational enquiry. The PG Cert as outlined below is flexible, responsive and innovative both in its presentation and in its approach to participants.



Applications for the PG Cert ULT 2020-21 closed on Monday 18 May. We will inform all applicants of the outcome of their application by the end of June.

If you have any questions about the course or the application process, please contact the PG Cert team at pgcertult@imperial.ac.uk.

Programme content

After completing phase 1, students attend an induction session and prepare an initial statement of teaching philosophy. Then students attend the core module How Students Learn which gives them theoretical background on which they can build further knowledge from optional modules in Phase 3. In Phase 3 students choose 3 modules  from a list to total 15 ECTS. The topics offered will vary from year to year, and not all topics will be offered every year. Most topics consist of two face to face sessions and are followed by an individual assignment supported by directed reading. Assignments are submitted for formative feedback before being collated and submitted with a second statement of teaching philosophy for final summative assessment. Outside of the modules students will also have to complete teaching and peer observations.

The programme is outlined below:PG Cert programme content

Course prerequisites

Please note that given the postponement of all face-to-face EDU workshops as a result of the COVID-19 situation, applicants will not be expected to have completed the pre-requisite workshops in order to start the PG Cert in 2020. 

There are three main entry routes into the PG Cert. These are:

  1. Completion of the Supporting Learning and Teaching Pathway (SLTP)


  2. Completion of compulsory workshops for new academic staff or appropriate equivalents as agreed in advance with the Programme Director

    Introduction to personal tutoring
    Introduction to supervising PhD students at Imperial
    Introduction to teaching for learning

    These three workshops are compulsory for all new lecturers. For those whose role does not encompass personal tutoring and/or supervising PhD students, provision may be made to substitute other one-day EDU workshops as alternatives. Please contact us (pgcertult@imperial.ac.uk) to discuss.


  3. In the Faculty of Medicine workshop stream, completion of:

    Introduction to teaching and learning in the Faculty of Medicine
    and two other one-day workshops chosen according to interest and need

In all three cases we would normally expect that the entry-level workshops detailed above will have been completed not more than two years prior to application to the PG Cert. Applicants whose experience of these courses was some time ago, may according to circumstances, be asked to review workshop material, prepare additional materials for submission prior to the start of the programme, or be asked to attend the current workshop.

2019-20 timetable

PG Cert ULT 2019-20 timetable [PDF]

Students will attend one mandatory module (How Students Learn) as well as - typically - three other modules of their choice.


Who can take the PG Cert?

The PG Cert is open to Imperial College staff who have appropriate teaching responsibilities with Imperial College students. NHS staff who teach Imperial students are also eligible to apply.

Typically a PG Cert student would be expected to be involved in a broad range of teaching including, but not limited to, supervising research students, teaching small groups, lecturing, course organisation and personal tutoring.

Those with a light teaching load, undertaking one–off lectures or a small number of tutorials are unlikely to have enough teaching to fulfil the practice aspect of the PG Cert and are therefore unlikely to be accepted onto the course.

In this case, choosing from our range of stand-alone workshops or investigating the Imperial STAR Framework may be a good alternative pathway. If you are interested in the PG Cert, but unsure if your teaching fulfils the requirements, please contact us (pgcertult@imperial.ac.uk) for a preliminary discussion.

I am a student, can I apply for the PG Cert?

College regulations mean that it is not possible to be registered simultaneously for two programmes of study, whether at Imperial or at another university. If you are already a student, then you will need to complete your studies before applying to the PG Cert, regardless of whether your course of study is part-time or if you are a member of staff.

Is the PG Cert accredited by the HEA?

Yes, the PG Cert is a recognised part of the Imperial STAR Framework, which incorporates HEA Fellowship at D1, D2 and D3.

How long does the PG Cert take to complete?

The normal timescale for completion of the PG Cert is one year.

When can I apply for the PG Cert?

Applications for the PG Cert ULT 2020-21 closed on Monday 18 May. Applications for the PG Cert ULT 2021-22 will open in early 2021.

If you have any questions about the course or the application process, please contact the PG Cert team at pgcertult@imperial.ac.uk.

How much does the PG Cert cost?

The programme is normally free of charge to Imperial staff.

Is the PG Cert compulsory?

No. New lecturers are required by College to attend the three Introduction to... workshops but the PG Cert itself is entirely optional.

I am taking the Faculty of Natural Sciences Learning and Teaching Development Programme (LTDP), how does this relate to the PG Cert?

The PG Cert and the LTDP are separate programmes, though with some elements in common. Application to the PG Cert is independent of your participation in any other programme. Questions about the LTDP should be directed to Professor Alan Spivey.

Imperial College works closely with employers and industry, including Industrial Advisory Panels to design Master’s courses which provide graduates with technical knowledge, expertise and transferable skills and to encourage students to take internships and placements. All Master’s courses are designed with employer needs in mind with some Master’s courses accredited by Professional, Statutory and Regulatory Bodies. Most Master’s courses offer an opportunity to carry out research projects in industry.