Ways Into Teaching

Training options

All teacher training courses will include time spent training in at least two schools and lead to qualified teacher status (QTS), so you’ll get the necessary support and training you need to succeed in the classroom. There are also a number of specialist training routes available depending on your subject, qualifications and previous experience. To explore a few options please click on the tabs below.

School-led training

Across England there are school-led training options for graduates who want hands-on training in a school. On a school-led training course, you’ll get the chance to learn on the job in at least two schools, learning from experienced colleagues and putting your new skills into practice from day one.

School-led courses generally last a year and result in the award of qualified teacher status (QTS). Most courses include a postgraduate certificate in education – or PGCE, which is likely to carry with it Master’s-level credits. You should check the exact details of individual courses on UCAS Teacher Training.

When it comes to choosing a school, it’s worth bearing in mind its location so you can plan accordingly. Attending events hosted by local providers can help you get a better understanding of the different factors you need to consider. Find events in your area.

Receive a bursary to support your training

There is lots of financial support available to help fund school-led training. Depending on your degree class and the subject you want to teach, you could be eligible for a generous tax-fee bursary or scholarship. If not, you’ll still have access to a tuition fee and maintenance loan to cover your training.

School-led courses are referred to as the SCITT (school-centred initial teacher training) programme and School Direct training programme, and you should use these terms when you search for a course. Whichever course you choose, your training experience will be the same.

Use the UCAS Teacher Training website to find a training programme or register to get started on your application today. You don’t have to finish this in one go – you can save your details and return any time.

Earn a salary while you train

You could earn a salary by training on a School Direct (salaried) programme. If you’re already working at or have an existing relationship with a school and want to take the next step, then you may want to consider this route.

Trainees on the salaried programme are recruited and employed directly by schools, and often continue teaching in their school following training.

If you train to teach maths or physics, you now have the opportunity to train on an accelerated programme, usually over two terms, or part-time over a longer period – usually two years.

Alternatively, if you’re a graduate or career changer with a 2:1 or above, you could earn a salary with Teach First.

You can call us on Freephone 0800 389 2500 between 8am and 8pm to discuss if school-led training is right for you.

Postgraduate training

If you are a graduate, you may want to train via a university-led course at a university or college.

University-led courses run full-time over one year, or part-time over two years. Your training will include spending time at your university or college, working with other trainees and being taught by university colleagues.

You’ll also spend plenty of time in your placement schools – a minimum of 24 weeks. This will help you develop your practical teaching skills and ability to manage and plan classes effectively. All courses lead to qualified teacher status (QTS) and a postgraduate certificate in education (PGCE).

Financial support during your training

There is lots of financial support available to help fund university-led training. Depending on your degree class and the subject you want to teach, you could be eligible for a generous tax-fee bursary or scholarship. If not, you’ll still have access to a tuition fee and maintenance loan to cover your training.

University-led courses are available across England, so there are plenty of options when it comes to location.

Make a start on your application through UCAS Teacher Training. You don’t have to finish this in one go – you can save your details and return any time.

Undergraduate training

You need a degree if you want to train to teach in England. You can gain a degree and qualified teacher status (QTS) together on a three- or four-year course, combining academic study with learning practical classroom skills. Find out more about undergraduate teacher training or visit our eligibility page if you want to know more about the basic requirements for becoming a teacher.

If you need further information, call us on Freephone 0800 389 2500 or use our online chat service between 8am and 8pm.

Teach First

Teach First is a charity working to end educational inequality. Since 2002, thousands of graduates have joined the Teach First Leadership Development Programme (LDP) in schools across England and Wales and helped change the lives of thousands of young people in low-income communities.


With the support of partner schools, businesses and universities, Teach First trains its participants to be effective teachers and leaders in schools in low-income areas.

The LDP is a two-year, personalised course encompassing high-quality training, supportive coaching, work experience and a PGCE qualification. The skills and experience gained can be taken forward into any career. That’s why many businesses recognise the programme’s ability to effect change and develop leaders for the future. Put simply, they know that graduates who can engage, stimulate and inspire in the classroom can handle pretty much any situation in any organisation.

As well as training inspirational teachers, Teach First supports its network of ambassadors who have completed the LDP. In the long term, this helps them make a difference in influential leadership positions in teaching, business and beyond.


Eligibility and salary

To be eligible for Teach First, you’ll need at least a 2:1 or higher. In the first year of the course, you’ll receive the basic salary for an unqualified teacher, rising to newly qualified teacher in your second year – find out more about teachers’ salaries.

Find out more about Teach First and the LDP in general on the Teach First website.

Maths and Physics Chairs programme

The Maths and Physics Chairs programme, part of Researchers in Schools (RIS), is a three-year bespoke, salaried teacher training course for high-calibre candidates who have completed, or are finishing, their PhD.


This prestigious programme offers a combination of classroom teaching and research opportunities, allowing you to develop your skills to become a highly effective classroom teacher – helping all pupils excel in maths or physics, regardless of background.

Throughout the programme, for those teaching maths and physics you won’t need to pay towards your training, and you’ll receive a generous first-year salary and benefits package of up to £35,800, rising to a salary of up to £38,500 in year two, dependent on location (salaries are currently being finalised, please check the RIS website for further details). In addition, you’ll have one day per week off-timetable to pursue the wider aims of the programme, with the opportunity to maintain a research profile. You will also deliver a range of research-driven interventions, including university-style tutorials and extra-curricular activities to raise subject attainment and support university applications.

The programme starts off with an initial summer training module, where you’ll be learning the theory of teaching practice, in addition to meeting other members of RIS. After this, you will be placed into a school to develop your teaching practice on the job, and work towards gaining qualified teacher status (QTS).

Additional benefits include:

  • the opportunity to undertake the Research Leader in Education Award
  • a full teacher’s pension
  • an honorary academic position from a research-intensive university
  • a £1,000 bursary to support the costs incurred in your research
  • a minimum of 10 weeks’ paid holiday

Early applications are strongly encouraged. To find out more and apply, please visit the Researchers in Schools website.

Troops to Teachers

As an Armed Services leaver, you can bring invaluable skills and experiences to the classroom by training to teach. If you’re interested in teaching secondary maths, biology, chemistry, physics, computing or modern foreign languages, you could fast-track your career into teaching with Troops to Teachers. You’ll start your training from September 2017, which will lead to an honours degree with qualified teacher status (QTS).


Two-year Troops to Teachers courses are for non-graduates and lead to QTS and a degree qualification. This involves:

  • earning a salary as an unqualified teacher while you train (this could be 80% of the unqualified teacher pay ranges)
  • training to teach in a school for four days a week, with university training one a day a week to further your academic qualifications to degree level
  • training in secondary maths, biology, chemistry, physics, computing or modern foreign languages

You’ll need to be able to demonstrate, through your qualifications in the Armed Forces, that you have sufficient evidence of academic achievement and specialist subject knowledge to support your development.

The minimum eligibility requirements for the course are:

  • English language and maths GCSE (or equivalent) grade C
  • a minimum of 120 subject-related Credit Accumulation and Transfer Scheme (CATS) points if your current qualifications relate specifically to your chosen subject for teacher training
  • a minimum of 240 credits if your qualifications are not specific to your chosen specialist subject for teacher training, but they are related

Your qualifications can be either academic (for example from the Open University), or professional qualifications like Command, Leadership and Management or Defence Train the Trainer courses. Experiences can be formal roles either as a trainer/instructor, or applying the subject you wish to teach.

If you already have a degree, you could access financial support of up to £25,000 on a postgraduate teacher training programme.

How to apply

Troops to Teachers is run by the University of Brighton, for further details and how to apply contact: troopstoteachers@brighton.ac.uk or 01273 643 598.

Classification as an eligible Service leaver

To be eligible for a Troops to Teachers course as a non-graduate, you will usually have served for at least four years, and are within five years of your discharge date at the start of the programme.

Future Teaching Scholars

The Future Teaching Scholars programme is a six-year programme for high-calibre candidates. It offers financial support and extra training while you’re a maths or physics undergraduate, followed by specialist teacher training.


The Future Teaching Scholars programme is a prestigious new route for high-quality A level students with a passion for maths or physics, and an interest in teaching.

In exchange for taking a maths- or physics-related degree, you’ll receive a £15,000 grant and early preparation for teaching while studying for your degree.

After graduating, you’ll receive bespoke employment-based teacher training – earning a salary while you learn, and working in schools from day one – with additional support for two further years and support finding your first teaching job.

Be part of the Future Teaching Scholars programme in 2017 or 2018 – register your interest today.

More information is available on the Future Teaching Scholars website.