Types of teaching courses

Undergraduate degree course leading to EYTS in a university

If you don't have a degree, you can study for your degree and complete your teacher training at the same time at various universities and colleges in England. Full-time courses usually take three to four years, while part-time courses take four to six years. You can study for a degree in an early childhood-related subject, with tuition fee loans and these can lead to early years teaching status (EYTS).

Postgraduate degree course based in a university

If you already have a degree, one option is to complete a postgraduate degree course based in a university or college. This is a course of academic study based in a university that results in a professional academic qualification, usually a Postgraduate Certificate of Education or PGCE. Full-time courses are normally one year long or up to two years part-time. Universities work with school partnerships to offer at least two school experience placements as part of your training.

School-Centred Initial Teacher Training (SCITT) programme

A school-led training course gives you the chance to learn 'on the job' in a school. You work as part of the teaching team from day one – similar to student medics in hospitals – learning from experienced, practising colleagues and immediately putting your new skills into practice. School-led teacher training courses generally last a year and all lead to qualified teacher status (QTS). Most school-led courses result in a postgraduate certificate in education (PGCE) and/or master's-level credits on successful completion.

School-centred initial teacher training (SCITT) are run by schools that have been given Government approval to run their own training. They provide practical, hands-on teacher training delivered by experienced, practising teachers based in their own school or at a school in their network. All SCITT courses generally last a year and result in QTS. Many also award a PGCE from a university.

School Direct programme

A school-led training course gives you the chance to learn 'on the job' in a school. You work as part of the teaching team from day one – similar to student medics in hospitals – learning from experienced, practising colleagues and immediately putting your new skills into practice. School-led teacher training courses generally last a year and all lead to qualified teacher status (QTS). Most school-led courses result in a postgraduate certificate in education (PGCE) and/or master's-level credits on successful completion.

School Direct courses are a popular choice for those who hope to secure a role in the network of schools where they train. If you’re successful in your training, you might get a job in one of the schools when you qualify. With School Direct you get practical, hands-on training and education based in good schools across the country. School Direct courses are designed by groups of schools – with a university or a School-centred initial teacher training (SCITT) centre – based on the skills they are looking for in a newly qualified teacher (NQT). The schools recruit you as a trainee onto their School Direct course with a job in mind just for you. School Direct courses generally last a year and all result in QTS. Most also award you a PGCE and/or master's-level credits, but you should check individual courses for more information.

School Direct salaried placement

School Direct courses are a popular choice for those who hope to secure a role in the network of schools where they train. If you’re successful in your training, you might get a job in one of the schools when you qualify. With School Direct you get practical, hands-on training and education based in good schools across the country. School Direct courses are designed by groups of schools – with a university or a School-centred initial teacher training (SCITT) centre – based on the skills they are looking for in a newly qualified teacher (NQT). The schools recruit you as a trainee onto their School Direct course with a job in mind just for you. School Direct courses generally last a year and all result in qualified teacher status (QTS). Most also award you a postgraduate certificate in education (PGCE) and/or master's-level credits, but you should check individual courses for more information.

If you're a graduate and have been working for around three years, School Direct (salaried) is available exclusively for you. You'll be based at a school and earn a salary during your training – schools recruit you as a trainee with a job in mind just for you. The cost of your training to achieve QTS is covered by the school – check with the school you are applying to whether this also includes a PGCE. School Direct (salaried) has far fewer places available and last year, candidates who were more flexible about their choice of teacher training course were more likely to secure a place.

School Direct early years programme

School Direct courses are a popular choice for those who hope to secure a role in the network of schools where they train. If you’re successful in your training, you might get a job in one of the schools when you qualify. With School Direct you get practical, hands-on training and education based in good schools across the country. School Direct courses are designed by groups of schools, with a university or a School-centred initial teacher training (SCITT) centre. The schools recruit you as a trainee onto their School Direct course with a job in mind just for you. School Direct courses generally last a year and result in early years teacher status (EYTS). Most also award you a postgraduate certificate in education (PGCE) and/or master's-level credits, but you should check individual courses for more information.

Early years initial teacher training

Early years initial teacher training works to develop individuals to meet the Teachers’ Standards (Early Years) which have been designed specifically to ensure that your training and assessment is appropriate for children from birth to age five. To achieve early years teacher status (EYTS) this typically this involves either one year of full-time study or one year of part-time study for graduates working in an early years setting who need further training to demonstrate the Teachers’ Standards (Early Years).

Early years initial teacher training (Assessment Only)

Early years initial teacher training works to develop individuals to meet the Teachers’ Standards (Early Years) which have been designed specifically to ensure that your training and assessment is appropriate for children from birth to age five. One route available to achieve early years teacher status is Assessment Only. This is a self-funded route which takes place over three months. It is aimed at graduates with experience of working with children from birth to age five, who meet the Teachers’ Standards (Early Years) with no need for further training, for example an early years teacher from overseas.

Teach First

Teach First offers another form of school-led training. It is an education charity that runs a two-year course for outstanding graduates where you can earn while you train and work in a challenging school in a low-income community.