How to become a teacher

Beginning the journey to becoming a teacher may seem daunting, but there’s plenty of advice and support available to help you enter the profession. Use this guide to find more information to help you take your first steps into a rewarding teaching career. Remember to register with us to receive free application support and advice from an experienced teacher.

Check your eligibility 

To teach as a qualified teacher in England, you’ll need qualified teacher status (QTS). If you already have a degree, you can complete a postgraduate teacher training course to achieve this. Additionally, you’ll need to have a GCSE at grade C / 4 in maths and English, as well as science if you want to teach primary. 

If you don’t have a degree, you can apply for an undergraduate teacher training course. 

What age group do you want to teach?  

Postgraduate teacher training is typically designed so that you can teach different age ranges:   

  • primary between the ages of 3 to 7, 5 to 11, or 7 to 11  
  • secondary between the ages of 11 to 16, 11 to 18 or 14 to 19

Some counties in England may also deliver middle school training between the ages of 7 and 14.  

Subjects to teach 

The secondary subject you train to teach will depend on your degree or A levels. You may be surprised at the variety of subjects you’re able to teach at secondary. If necessary, you can top up your subject knowledge with a fully funded subject knowledge enhancement course

Primary school training covers the whole range of national curriculum subjects. Some primary courses allow you to specialise in a subject, such as maths, languages or PE.

Middle school training covers primary national curriculum subjects and specialising in a secondary subject.

Funding to become a teacher  

There are three types of funding available for teacher training - depending on your circumstances, you could receive all three. This could be a £26,000 tax-free bursary, Tuition Fee and Maintenance Loan, and additional support if you’re a parent or have a disability.    

Search and apply for teacher training   

You can use the Department for Education’s search tool to find courses in your area. You can filter your search results by provider, location and subject.   

Once you are ready to apply, you do this via UCAS Teacher Training - the online portal for postgraduate teacher training. Our application tips can help you showcase your skills and submit the best application possible. 

If you’re applying for an undergraduate teacher training course, you will need to apply via the UCAS undergraduate portal.    

Take your first step into teaching by registering for your own personalised adviser who'll guide you through the process.