To teach in a state-maintained school in England you will need to achieve ‘qualified teacher status’ (QTS). There are a number of ways you can achieve this so you should find a route that best suits your needs. Study options include full or part-time training and you can do this during your degree or once you have graduated. Typical initial teacher training (ITT) courses include teaching principles, teacher observation and practical classroom experience.
Undergraduate training routes
If you don’t yet have a degree, there are two main routes that you can take:
- Enrol for a degree that includes QTS. This will be full-time over four years. When you graduate you will be awarded with either Bachelor of Education or a Bachelor of Science with QTS
- Complete a non-teaching degree and then enrol on a postgraduate ITT course
Postgraduate training routes
There are a number of different routes for postgraduates. These range from university-led courses to school-led training such as School Direct.
University-led training is typically via a one year full-time or two year part-time course. The course will be based in a higher education institution and will include a considerable amount of time spent on placement in schools. The focus of the course is mainly on teaching skills and not the subject that you intend to teach. You will therefore need to have prior Computing subject knowledge which you can then apply in the classroom. Once completed, you will typically be awarded with a PGCE. You will need to apply for a Computing, Computer Science or Computing and ICT PGCE.
|"I wanted to gain insights into different teaching strategies so I could bring something new for each lesson and for that I chose to do a PGCE" Nidhi Vasudeva, BCS teaching scholar. Read more|
School-led training – School Direct or SCITT
If you choose a school-led training route you will spend all of your time training in schools. School Direct programmes are generally one year full-time courses and you would be based in a specific school. This route will involve you training in a school for a role that they have available and is expected to lead to employment once qualified. School Direct (salaried) works in much the same way but is aimed at graduates with at least three years of work experience. Trainees are paid a salary as an unqualified teacher and are employed once qualified.
School-centred initial teacher training (SCITT) is similar to School Direct but is run by a consortium of local schools which means you will get experience in more than one school.
Most school-led teacher training courses will also result in a PGCE being awarded.
Teach First is an educational charity that runs an employment-based teacher training scheme. Participants are paid a salary whilst training over a two-year period. The scheme is designed to attract high achieving graduates who are then partnered with schools in challenging circumstances. Participants will be enrolled on a leadership development programme which involves intensive training, professional development and the achievement of a PGCE upon completion.
Is your Computing subject knowledge up to scratch?
Subject knowledge enhancement (SKE) courses will allow you to ‘top-up’ your Computing subject knowledge. You may consider this if your degree didn’t include sufficient Computing content to enrol on an ITT course straight away or if you have not worked in a Computing-related job role. The length of SKE courses varies to cater for a wide range of subject knowledge needs. Full-time study, part-time study and distance learning options are available and courses are typically run by ITT providers.