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FAQ

General FAQs

What programmes do you offer?

We offer two routes to achieving Qualified Teacher Status (QTS).  Our SCITT route is for people with no or minimal experience of teaching and is a one-year full-time (or two-year part-time) course including extensive training and mentor support.  Our Assessment Only Route is for people with at least two years teaching experience in at least two educational settings in at least two age ranges.  To find out more please visit the relevant pages of our website.

I can’t find my GCSE/A-level/degree certificates, do you need to see them?

Yes, we have to check all original documents before you can be accepted onto a SCITT programme. Certificates can be ordered from the original awarding body – you can find their details here

My qualifications are from overseas, what do I need to do?

We ask that anyone apply for one of our programmes who holds overseas qualification contacts ENIC  who will confirm that the level of the qualification studied meets a number or criteria regarding comparability to the public examinations taken at GCSE level and studies at UK undergraduate degree level.

Please note there is a charge per application (not per qualification if you submit them together!) and that this process can take some time so please make a start with this as soon as possible if you wish to apply for one of our courses. 

I don’t have the required grades in my GCSEs - what do I do?

You can either take your GCSE again or you can take an equivalency test for maths, English or science GCSEs.  You will need to choose a provider that best suits you.  Some offer the examination only and others offer tuition and revision support.  The examinations can take place at different points during the year too so this is something to consider – some do it ‘on demand’.

We will accept equivalency tests from the following providers:

I don’t have the required grades in my GCSEs but I have an A-level/degree in the same subject – is this okay?

Unfortunately, we are not allowed to accept higher-level qualifications in place of GCSEs.  GCSEs cover specific skills and a range of topics that are assessed at a certain breadth and depth which are not equivalent to A-levels/degrees (for example) so we are unable to accept these.

SCITT initial Teacher Training FAQs – Course information

Which SCITT courses do you offer? 

We offer a range of secondary courses for the 11-16 or 11-18 age range.  For the full list of courses please visit: SCITT page.

When do your courses close?

As we are a small SCITT, we only have between one and three places on each of our courses.  Therefore, it is important that you apply as early as possible as we will close the course once the places have been offered.  We will close all of our courses at the end of July before they commence in September.

What qualification will I gain?

On successful completion of all elements of our programme you will gain QTS (Qualified Teacher Status) in your chosen subject and age range, a PGCE (Post Graduate Certificate in Education) from our partner university and a Youth Mental Health First Aider qualification.

When does the SCITT programme start?

The SCITT programme starts at the beginning of September and finishes at the end of June/beginning of July the following year.  Please ensure you do not book any holidays for half-term or other school holidays until you start the programme as your placement school might have different term dates!

How much time will I spend in school learning ‘on the job’?

Usually, our trainees spend approximately four days a week in school during the first term.  After Christmas, this increases to five days a week for some weeks and after Easter you will be on placement for five days a week most of the time.

Can I choose which school my placement is in?

We make decisions about which schools our trainees are placed in based on availability of placements, the experience of the mentors and a range of other factors.  Ultimately, the decision will be made by the SCITT Programmes Lead.

However, we will always consider requests based on special/extenuating circumstances (i.e. childcare or no personal transport) but cannot guarantee that we are able to fulfil them.

SCITT initial Teacher Training FAQs – Entry Requirements

What qualifications do I need to have?

Please visit our Entry Criteria page for more information about qualifications required for teacher training.

Do I have to hold a degree in the subject I want to teach?

Not necessarily.  We will also consider A-levels or equivalent in the subject you want to teach and your level of subject knowledge (assessed at interview).

I have a third class or pass degree, would I still be accepted on the programme?

We consider third class or pass degrees on an individual basis.  Please contact us on 01977 657604 to discuss this further.

I am still at university waiting for my degree results, will that stop me being offered a place?

No, if you are working towards a degree that’s fine as long as you are predicted a 2:2 or above and have the certificate prior to commencing the training.  Any offer will remain conditional until you provide this.

Do I have to pass my literacy and numeracy skills tests before I start the programme?

No, the skills tests were discontinued in April 2020.  Instead, the Department for Education (DfE) announced a new system of provider-led assurance that will assess the fundamental English and mathematics skills of trainee teachers.  This means that you will need to complete our literacy and numeracy proficiency checks before you receive a firm offer for our programme.

I have a DBS check already, can you accept this or do I need to apply again?

If your DBS check is an Enhanced DBS check and you have subscribed to the update service we may be able to use this.  We will need your DBS certificate number and your date of birth so we can check it.

Otherwise, we will need to apply for a new DBS for you after you have been offered a place on the programme and you will be required to subscribe to the update service at a cost of £13 per year.

I haven’t taught or worked in a school before will this hinder my chances of a place?

No, although it would be an advantage if you had worked in a school before so that you understand what teaching entails and the expectations and demands of the role.  We tend to find that candidates with experience do better at interview.

SCITT initial Teacher Training FAQs – Finance

How much does it cost to complete one of your SCITT Initial Teacher Training Courses?

The course fee for UK students is £9250 for all our courses. For further details about student finance and bursaries please visit: SCITT finance page.

Is there any financial support available for the training?

Yes – you may be entitled to a tuition fee and/or maintenance loan and there may be extra allowances you can claim.  For further details about student finance and bursaries please visit:  SCITT 

Even if you have already taken out a student loan for your first degree or qualify for a teaching bursary or scholarship, you can still apply for these loans.

How does the bursary work?

Candidates may be eligible for a tax-free bursary in some subjects if they have 1st, 2:1, 2:2, PhD or Master’s:

  • £24,000 in chemistry, computing, mathematics and physics
  • £15,000 in design and technology, geography and languages
  • £10,000 in biology

If you are offered a place, the bursary is automatically generated when we register you onto our programme.  You do not need to apply for it.

You will receive this from us in ten equal payments from October to July of your training year.  (I.e., eligible Biology trainees will receive £1000 in October, £1000 in November, etc.) 

Will I be able to work whilst training full-time?

You can.  However, the course intense so we don’t recommend it.  If you do choose to work, your course must take priority and you must be able to attend all the timetabled sessions.

Are your SCITT courses salaried?

No, we do not run salaried programmes at our SCITT.

SCITT Assessment Only Route FAQs

Which programmes do you offer? 

We offer the Assessment Only Route for almost all subjects and age ranges.  Please visit to check the age ranges you can qualify in:

When can I submit my application?

We run our Assessment Only Route to QTS all year round so you can submit your application at any time during the year.  However, please be aware that after May half-term, we will not start any new assessment periods until September due to the 12-week assessment period requirement.

When does the Assessment Only Route to QTS start?

We can start the Assessment Only Route to QTS within 12 months of receiving your application providing you are still in the same educational setting and your job role has not changed significantly.  We will not start any assessment periods after May half-term until September due to the 12-week assessment period requirement.

How long will it take me to complete the Assessment Only Route?

From successful application to qualification, we would suggest it takes approximately fifteen weeks to qualify providing you are ready to start the programme and everything runs smoothly.  Your pre-assessment visit can be arranged within three weeks of applying and the course lasts a maximum of twelve weeks.  Stronger candidates may complete their assessment period in as little as four weeks but our assessors will make this judgement in discussion with yourself at the pre-assessment visit.

What qualification will I gain?

On successful completion the Assessment Only Route you will gain QTS (Qualified Teacher Status) in your chosen subject and age range.

What training is included in the Assessment Only Route programme?

This programme will only assess your current practice.  We are not allowed to offer additional training.  However, we will give you targets, reflection points and may also suggest training you can access to support you to complete the programme.

Which school will I be assessed in?

You will usually be assessed in your current educational setting although we can also carry out the second observation in your second school setting if you wish.

What evidence do I need to prove I am meeting the Teachers’ Standards?

You will compile a Reflective Portfolio to present your evidence.  This can be electronic or on paper and will include: lesson observations, planning, examples of pupil work, a subject knowledge audit and CPD, amongst other things.  Your assessor will also gather evidence when you talk through your portfolio, their discussions with your Headteacher and School-based mentor and when they observe you teaching.

Is there any financial support available for the Assessment Only Route to QTS?

Unfortunately, there are no financial schemes or support available for the Assessment Only Route to QTS.

Do I have to hold a degree in the subject I want to teach?

No – for the Assessment Only Route we only need to assess that your Subject Knowledge is at a sufficient level so that you are meeting the Teachers’ Standards for the subject and age range you are qualifying in.

I have a third class or pass degree, would I still be accepted on the programme?

Yes, for the Assessment Only Route this would not be an issue as long as it fulfils the degree entry criteria.  entry criteria

Do I have to pass my literacy and numeracy skills tests before I start the programme?

No, the skills tests were discontinued in April 2020.  Instead, the Department for Education (DfE) announced a new system of provider-led assurance that will assess the fundamental English and mathematics skills of trainee teachers. This means that you will need to demonstrate sufficient proficiency in literacy and numeracy during your assessment period before being awarded QTS.

I have a DBS check already, can you accept this or do I need to apply again?

We can accept the DBS check that the school in which you are being assessed has accepted to enable you to teach in their setting.