PCS training pathway

If you are a rep or are just interested in finding out more about PCS, you can follow this guide to see what courses suit your needs. It's always a good idea to speak to a regional learning contact or someone in your branch about your own and your branch's training needs.

This is intended as a guide: it is not prescriptive and reps should not restrict themselves to one type of union activity. 

For more information contact learning@pcs.org.uk.


Want to find out more about PCS?

  • Get active in PCS
  • Women’s course
  • Black members' course
  • Young members' course

These courses are for PCS members who want more information and may wish to become active in the union.

Proud stage 1 & 2

These courses are designed for lesbian, gay, bisexual and trans (LGBT) members to discuss and exchange experiences, identify discrimination and progress issues through the union.

Are you a PCS Rep?

  • An introduction to PCS/New reps
  • TUC introductory course stage 1

These two courses are suitable for new PCS representatives, whatever your specific role. A local rep may also want to attend our 'Handling personal cases' course.

Stepping up – an advanced course for union reps

This course is geared towards more experienced reps who have taken the introductory courses.

Dealing with Health and Safety issues? 

  • PCS Health and Safety course
  • TUC Health and Safety course stage 1

These two courses are suitable for all new PCS health and safety representatives. Health and safety reps may also find the negotiation skills course useful.

TUC Health and Safety course stage 2

After undertaking these courses, and with more experience, it may be appropriate for reps to do the TUC health and safety stage 2 course.

TUC diploma in occupational Health and Safety

This is for reps who have done stage 1 and 2 and hold a senior health and safety position.

Dealing with equality issues?

  • Tackling discrimination in the workplace
  • Dealing with sexuality and transgender issues in the workplace

These courses are suitable for equality officers and for any PCS reps who may be dealing with discrimination and equality issues.

Tackling disability discrimination

This course is to give a basic understanding of the Disability Discrimination Act (DDA) and how it can help disabled members at work.

Work Life Balance

This course looks at how you can support and campaign with members on improving their work life balance.

Are you a branch organiser or officer?

Organising To Win course (3 days and 5 days)

This is a course developed for branch organisers and branch officers to develop organising skills.

Campaigns Course

This course is suitable for branch officers involved in campaigning.

Are you a learning rep?

Union Learning Reps course

This is a course developed for union learning reps (ULR) to promote learning at work. ULRs may also find the negotiation skills course useful. It is also recommended that ULRs do the Introduction to PCS course.

Branch learning co-ordinators course

This course is for ULRs who want to develop a more strategic role co-ordinating and supporting other ULRs in their branch.

Do you have financial responsibilities?

Branch treasurers course

A course for PCS branch treasurers and auditors.

Do you do casework?

Handling personal cases course/Representing members

This course helps reps develop skills in interviewing, using agreements and procedures and resolving personal cases.

Advanced personal cases course

This course is for representatives who handle more complex personal cases.

Employment tribunals and advocacy skills course

The Employment Tribunals and Advocacy course is for experienced representatives who deal with, or are likely to deal with, employment tribunal cases

Do you have a negotiating role?

Negotiations skills course/Organising to win (5 day)

A course that helps reps develop skills for local negotiation and plan for and report on negotiations.

Pay negotiation course

A course for branch and group officers who deal with, or expect to deal with, pay negotiations.

Are you a senior or experienced rep?

  • TUC Diploma in contemporary trade unionism
  • TUC Diploma in employment law

These may be of interest to more experienced reps. More information is available here.


Interested in facilitating workshops and courses?

Lay tutors course

This course is aimed at reps with some experience who want to develop their communication and presentation skills to help support learning. 

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