Have you got what it takes?

Teaching is increasingly becoming a career for the very best graduates and professionals. The proportion of new trainee teachers with a 2:1 or first is currently 73% – higher than it’s ever been before. So if you’ve got a degree to be proud of, why not use it to become part of a respected profession alongside the best colleagues and bright young minds? By becoming a teacher, you can use your education and outstanding subject knowledge to give something back and make a difference. 

Turning a tough lesson into a success

Danny began teaching in an an inner city school: “It was quite a hard school in a deprived area. I taught there for three years and it was tough, but extremely rewarding.”

As a PE teacher, he feels that his behaviour management skills are particularly important. “They need to be absolutely spot on if the students are to learn in your lessons because there are a lot of barriers that can prevent the students from accessing that learning.

“I had a group of year 10 students arrive to a rugby lesson with the view that rugby wasn’t for them and they weren’t going to do it.”

He listened to them, and adapted his approach to the lesson. His efforts were rewarded when several of the students joined his extra-curricular rugby class five days later.

Read more of this case study

Danny Holliday, PE teacher

We are teaching the children for the future, preparing them for jobs that don't even exist yet.

Nicola Wood, design and technology teacher

I was concerned I could potentially fail students. But since I’ve started, those concerns have disappeared, because I’ve got such a big support network. 

- Evie Gray, trainee history teacher

Most people say they’re worried about behaviour, so we do a lot of modelling of different scenarios. It’s about attaining authority, but showing you’ve also got a human side.

- Paul Whithey, PGCE subject route leader for science

Once I started training, my appreciation grew of how much responsibility a teacher has in making sure students progress.

- Emma Clack, art teacher

My biggest concern was my age, because I’d come straight from university. But as soon as you’re in schools and you understand the roles and responsibilities, age really doesn’t matter. 

- Mike Simmons, geography teacher 

Make an impact

Training to be a teacher helps you make the most of your skills, then continue to develop them in the classroom once you’re qualified. That applies to trainees from all kinds of academic and professional backgrounds – whether you’re a recent graduate or looking to change careers after many years in a particular profession. Whichever school- or university-led course you choose, training will always involve:

  • school placements
  • academic study
  • classroom management skills
  • mentoring and support

91% of newly qualified secondary teachers and 89% of newly qualified primary teachers highly rated their teacher training

Could you train to be a teacher?

There’s a wide range of different teacher training courses available, and the one you choose will likely depend on your qualifications, experience and where you want to train. Courses are available across the country, so you should have plenty of options on the location of your training, too. 

There are, however, two key criteria that you’ll need to meet to train to teach in England, regardless of your course preference: 

  • A GCSE grade C (or equivalent) in maths and English – and science if you want to be a primary teacher
  • A UK degree (or an overseas equivalent)

If you're in your final year of uni, you can still begin your application now. There are also undergraduate degrees that include the chance to achieve qualified teacher status. Or if you're an armed service leaver, you may be able to gain qualified teacher status without a degree on a Troops to Teachers course.

Find out more about overseas equivalent qualifications.

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