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Teacher training – what are my options?

Liam and Laura, two trainee teachers, talk about school- and university-led initial teacher training, and the benefits of both.

As well as deciding which age group and subject you would like to teach, you can choose from various types of teacher training courses depending on your qualifications, experience, and where you want to train. Courses are available throughout England, so you have plenty of options when it comes to the location of your training. Check with course providers for confirmation of where you will be eligible to teach once qualified. 

Before you decide which route into teaching you want to take, you should find out about the common factors that apply across all teacher training courses

We can help you decide which course suits you best – register for personalised advice and support.

School-led training

If you want your training to be based in a school where you can be fully immersed in the life of a teacher from day one, a school-led training course is for you. You're selected by the school and are based there during your training. You will also spend time in at least one other school to gain the broad experience required to become a qualified teacher.  

There are school-led training options for both graduates and career changers who want hands-on training in a school.

All school-led courses cover the practical and theoretical elements of teaching, often with university partners. Most school-led courses lead to a postgraduate certificate in education (PGCE) and/or master's-level credits, in addition to qualified teacher status (QTS).

University-led training

Universities and colleges offer teacher training courses for both graduates and undergraduates. Universities work with groups of schools to offer at least two school experience placements as part of your training.

If you want your teacher training to be based at a university, this is the option for you. A PGCE is available through all university-led training. 

Already a teacher?

If you're already an experienced teacher with a degree but you don't have QTS, you may not have to do any further training. Instead, you can follow the Assessment Only (AO) route, where you can prove that you already meet the standards and can therefore be awarded QTS.

Teachers who want to return to teaching can find out more about about returning to the profession

Qualified teachers from overseas

If you are qualified to teach in the European Union (EU), Australia, Canada, New Zealand or the USA, you may be able to gain QTS in England without any further training or assessment.

If you are an EU citizen and can communicate to a high standard of English, you can also train to teach in England – find out more about the eligibility criteria and funding available

Whichever route you decide on, there is a range of tools and services available to help you along the way. Register for personalised advice and support

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