CollectionGB 0231 University of Aberdeen, Special Collections
TitleAberdeen Provincial Training Centre
Extent429 volumes/files, 107 photographs, 1 photo album, 10 plans, 7 objects and 1 artwork
Creator NameAberdeen Provincial Training Centre
Administrative HistoryHISTORY

In 1905 the first Training Regulations for teachers came into effect and teacher training came under the direction of four Provincial Committees in Scotland. In 1920 The National Committee for the Training of Teachers was established. There was now a three tier administrative arrangement: Provincial Committees were in charge of the management of the training centres and were also authorised to conduct classes for practising teachers: the National Committee (acting through a Central Executive Committee) had general responsibility for teacher training including the control of finance, buildings and staffing, student numbers and types of courses: and the Scotch Education Department had the final decision on policy and the ultimate control of expenditure.

The new Aberdeen Training centre, building around the previous colleges around St. Andrew Street, did not come into operation until 1921; Hilton Hostel opened in 1927, Clifton in 1928. The College was ever expanding and due to the school leaving age rising to 15 after World War II (1947), there was a resulting increase in the demand for teachers, leading to an emergency recruitment scheme. This came to an end in 1951 but was re-established as The Special Recruitment Scheme that same year.


The Teacher's Special Certificate -

This was awarded under Chapter V for persons who had taken a relevant honours degree and who had trained for an additional year at the College of Education. The person was eligible to hold posts in secondary schools or head teachership.

The Teacher's General Certificate -

This was awarded under Chapter III and Chapter IV for persons who had trained under the conditions in Chapter III. This was the certificate for Primary School work. There were two avenues of approach to it: the person had any University degree and thereafter trained for an additional year or the person (if a woman) took a three years course at the College of Education.

Endorsement under Article 39 -

A person whose degree covered at least two years' work at the University in a school subject was able to take some special secondary teacher training relative to that subject and qualify for an endorsement of their General Certificate under Article 39. This meant the person would be able to teach in a secondary school (with restrictions on higher teaching posts).

Teacher's Technical Certificate -

This was awarded under Chapter VI for persons whose post school study has been in a subject in which advanced couses are provided outside the Universities, i.e. art, music etc. The perons usually have a Diploma from their technical college and they had to then train at the College of Education for a further two years. The person could hold posts in primary and secondary schools.

The College also provided:
specialist courses for teachers of handicapped pupils
specialist courses for infant mistresses or principal teachers of nursery schools
short courses or part-time courses in particular aspects of education or for teachers already in service.


Director of Studies -

George Smith (1907-1922) (former principal/rector of the Free Church College)
George Burnett (1922-1924)
Dr. William Edward (1924-1939)
John Hardie (1939-1959)
DescriptionThere are very detailed student records from 1905-1959 including Registers of Students, Student Photographic Albums, Training Records, Yearbooks and class photographs. There are also extensive administrative records including minutes of the Aberdeen Provincial Committee and sub-committees, papers of the Director of Studies, Student Representatives Council, financial recorrds, staff records and plans.
AppraisalApplications for entrance - index cards recording name, address, date of birth, intended course of study, personality rating, decision of Central Selection Board (1940s) destroyed.

Medical returns of students 1950s destroyed.
Access StatusRestricted
Access ConditionsSome records contain personal information and may be closed for 75 years under the Data Protection Act (1998)
Related MaterialAberdeen Provincial Training Centre lecture Notes, 1910. (MS 3798)
Aberdeen Provincial Training Centre lecture Notes, 1912 (MS 3817)
Aberdeen Provincial Training College lecture notes and papers, 1901-1914 (MS 3820)
Agnes Lyall: teaching training lecture notes, 1930-1931 (MS 3606)

Published material relating to the College are held in Special Libraries & Archives Local Collection (open access):

Set of Provincial Committee Minutes

Incomplete set of student handbooks

Report to the Director of Studies by the Lady Warden (Agnes Grainger Stewart) 1908-1909 (Aberdeen : [s.n.], 1909?) (pamphlet)

Training college entrants : a study of the educational attainments of pre-war and post-war students at Aberdeen, as measured by their entrance qualifications (John Hardie, [Glasgow] : Scottish Council for Research in Education, 1957)

*Please note that Aberdeen Public Library hold copies of the College magazine Normal Echoes (new series) v.4:1-v.10:1 (December 1910-December 1916)*
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