Learning and Teaching (Higher Education) PG Cert

Postgraduate Certificate (Non FHEA)

Enhance your academic practice and achieve teaching excellence with our online PGCert learning and Teaching in Higher Education.

  • Study 100% online providing ultimate flexibility wherever you work
  • Taught by an expert team of active researchers in higher education
  • Make positive contributions to teaching and learning within the Higher Education sector
  • Support your own continuing professional development and advance your teaching career
  • Be part of the University of the Year (THE)

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About your PGCert higher education

If you're new to teaching in higher education or already teach higher education courses in the further education environment, our course is for you. Our practice-based online PG Cert in teaching and learning encourages you to reflect upon your own practice, learn from sharing practice with others, and develop a deep understanding of educational models framing Higher Education in contemporary university settings. By studying a PG Cert in teaching higher education via distance learning, you'll have the flexibility to develop your skills around your other commitments.

Course highlights

  • Develop the knowledge and skills necessary to plan, deliver, and evaluate learning
  • Examine and reflect upon your own practice and develop an understanding of theoretical frameworks
  • Our higher education PGCert encourages you to develop your own teaching practices
  • Apply your learning directly to your teaching practice to enhance your students learning experience

How you'll study

This course is studied 100% online
Course length

Study this course over 1 year

Start dates

Start in January or September

Application deadlineOur next deadline is

28th June 2024

UK Quality Assured

Course overview

As a current teacher and lecturer in Higher Education (HE), this practice-based online PG cert course, underpinned by theory, will provide an opportunity for you to critically reflect, analyse, synthesise, and apply your learning to your teaching practice.

This distance learning teacher training course is taught by a team of active researchers in education and supports your own Continuing Professional Development (CPD) to enable you to make positive contributions to teaching and learning within the Higher Education sector.

Our higher education teaching certificate comprises two modules, with each module containing a compulsory teaching observation within your HE institution. As you will be undertaking observations within your institution as part of their quality assurance processes and support for your CPD, this observation will focus on assessing your practice in relation to the related learning outcomes within the modules.

If you have any questions relating to career development or gaining Higher Education Academy Fellowship, please get in touch. If you work at ARU or for the NHS, and teach ARU courses, then we have an alternative version of the course available for you. Please contact us to find out more.

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Enhancing Learning and Teaching Through Reflective Practice

This module is designed to introduce you to the knowledge and skills necessary to plan, deliver, and evaluate learning. It will encourage you to develop and enhance your own teaching practices in the light of relevant theoretical models of learning and your own experience as a learner and teacher. You’ll address the practical aspects of teaching, ranging from teaching students in large and small groups, using technology to support learning and developing courses of learning based on the principle of constructive alignment. It places considerable emphasis on developing practical teaching skills to enhance the learning experience of students.

Developing Assessment for Learning

This module is designed to help you to become critically aware of the range of strategies available to you and of the need to promote assessment strategies which are reliable, fair, and valid. You’ll examine and reflect upon your own practice and develop an understanding of theoretical frameworks particularly in relation to the use of formative assessment, feedback and feed-forward as ways of promoting learning. You will also be given the opportunity to develop skills in the use of feedback and feed-forward as well as helping to develop specific assessment criteria which will be used to help assess your own work. This module will also seek to develop your range of skills and knowledge which will enhance your professional practice as a teacher and encourage you to see assessment as an integral part of the learning and teaching process.


Assessment for both modules involves the completion of a series of pieces of academic work that are informed by both your practice and theoretical understanding. The assessment approach, named patchwork text, supports you to demonstrate your engagement with each module’s outcomes and compile the assessment for each module as the module progresses. The planning for and observation of your practice, as well as your subsequent reflection, is aligned to the module outcomes and forms part of your academic submission.

We use online submission and feedback for our final assessments. With students across the sector increasingly expected to use online plagiarism detection software packages, this offers you an insight into both ‘sides’ of the tool, as well as the opportunity to try out the system from a ‘student’ perspective.

How you'll study

Our Learning and Teaching (Higher Education) PG Cert can be studied 100% online, with access to weekly online webinars and tutorials.

You’ll study through Canvas, our world-class online Learning Management System (LMS), which can be accessed from your phone, PC, or tablet at home or on the move. Canvas provides instant access to study materials, forums, and support from tutors and classmates, as well as enabling easy submission of your assignments.

On successful completion of your studies, you’ll be invited to attend a graduation ceremony on campus. If attending the ceremony in person is not possible then we’ll arrange to have your certificate sent to you.

Supported distance learning

We understand that distance learning is different to traditional campus study and if you’re new to online study you may have concerns or apprehensions about studying your postgraduate certificate in higher education online, and that’s natural.

To help put your mind at ease we have a dedicated Distance Learning Support Team to help and support you throughout your time at ARU, starting with your first online induction and staying with you right through to graduation. In addition, you’ll also be supported by specialist course tutors who are well experienced in teaching distance learning students.

Once you start your PGCert higher education, we encourage the creation of online communities and many of our learners find these connections with others invaluable, helping them to stay motivated, share concerns or make new friendships.

Contact us to talk through any questions or concerns or visit our support page for more information about the support services available.

Our support services

Be part of the University of the Year

We're proud to be the Times Higher Education (THE) University of the Year 2023.

The prestigious THE awards honour ’exceptional performance during the 2021-22 academic year, and reflect ARU’s success in delivering high-impact projects during this period, despite the challenges of the Covid-19 pandemic.

The award recognises the difference we make in the region and our communities – while also acknowledging the broader impact of our world-leading research, and the contributions our students and graduates make to society.

THE 2023 Awards Logo


What can this PGCert higher education do for my career?

Our PGCert learning and teaching in higher education is ideal for helping you progress in your career. This course is created to nurture your Continuing Professional Development and enables you to contribute to the wider higher education sector.

An ARU distance learning course gives you the skills you need to further your own career, developing your academic and research skills, broadening your knowledge of industry specific practices, and enhancing the key soft skills that are sought after by employers.

What job roles can I consider with a postgraduate certificate in higher education?

This higher education teaching qualification is for those currently teaching in a Higher Education Institute or teaching HE within an FE setting.

If you are looking for more information about these or other job profiles and potential salary earnings see Prospects.ac.uk. It’s important to note that salaries can vary widely depending on the job role, employer, industry sector and location.

What can I study after a PGCert higher education?

Depending on your long-term goals and interests you may decide to explore a full postgraduate master’s qualification before moving on to a doctorate qualification to further your academic interests. Having a master’s degree under your belt is a key entry requirement in opening doors to study at this level.

What skills will I get from a higher education teaching qualification to help my career?

You'll be able to transfer and apply your theory knowledge to the classroom, so it reflects positively in your teaching practice. You'll adopt an autonomous and professional approach to your role as HE practitioner and you'll participate in the development of a supportive and co-operative HE learning environment.

Careers Advice Service

Once you become an ARU student you will be able to access our Employability service to help you at whatever stage of your career, whether that’s landing your first dream job or the next progression step.

We offer:

  • careers advice, including one-to-one online and telephone appointments with our experienced advisers
  • help with your CV, job searches, applications, and interview preparation
  • an online portal packed with useful careers resources
  • our Employability Programme, which helps you hone the skills employers say they want in graduates.

Entry requirements

In order to meet the course requirements, it is necessary that you are currently teaching and supporting learning within the Higher Education sector both on application and during the entire course.

A first degree is desirable, and a high standard of written English is essential.

If English is not your first language, you will be expected to demonstrate a certificated level of proficiency of at least IELTS 6.5 or equivalent.

As a distance learner, you'll also need a suitable computer with internet connection, together with sufficient IT competence to make effective use of our online learning management system (LMS) with high-speed internet and email.

Our published entry requirements are a guide only and our decision will be based on your overall suitability for the course as well as whether you meet the minimum entry requirements.

Fees & funding


The full tuition fee for this higher education teaching certificate is £2,733.

Accredited Prior Learning may reduce the tuition fees. This will be confirmed once your application has been submitted.


We offer payment by instalments, so you can spread the cost of studying with us.

For military students: You can use your ELCs towards this course. Anglia Ruskin University is a recognised ELCAS provider (number 1007). Please contact your Learning Centre for details of ELC, eligibility and how to apply.

For more information on how you fund your studies please see our funding page.

What our students say

Dio  - ARU Student

ARU was a great choice that allowed me to achieve my personal and professional ambitions. I felt supported, empowered, and accomplished.

Read Dio's story
Shipa - ARU Distance Learning Student

I have been able to study at a time and place convenient to me. I was able to manage my job, family life and study in the comfort of my home whilst still developing my career prospects.

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Sophie - ARU Student

Being a distance learner, I feel like I am getting the absolute most out of the time I put in. It will give me opportunities that a few years ago I didn’t think were possible.

Read Sophie's story
Mark - ARU Distance Learning Student

If you have commitments outside of your studies, distance learning is perfect. It has been great for me as a teacher working abroad.

Read Mark's story

Frequently Asked Questions

Next application deadline:

28th June 2024

Discover what you're made of.Apply now before the application deadline.

Find out more about distance learning on our blog