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Advice For Those Interested In Teaching

Qualifications

There are a number of ways in which to qualify as a teacher, either through studying full-time, part-time or via distance learning. Not all Universities and Colleges offer part-time or distance learning; contact your local Further and Higher Education establishments for more information on what they offer.

Most teachers must gain a Bachelor of Education Degree, but those who have already gained a degree in a relevant subject can study for a PGDE. Professional Graduate Diploma in Education is a one year course available in Scotland. Equivalent courses in the rest of the UK are named Postgraduate Certificate in Education.

Working as a classroom assistant first can give valuable experience of the day to day life of a teacher. If you have worked in a classroom already, then the route to teaching can be quicker.

Where To Teach

If you decide to teach Primary or Secondary Schools, you will normally teach a specific age-group. Secondary school teachers would usually specialise in a particular subject, along with taking form/registration classes. Teaching positions are also available with special needs children and colleges or universities.

Teaching English as a foreign language (TEFL) can also give you the opportunity to work and live abroad.

Skills Needed

Teaching can be a very rewarding career, but as with most careers, this takes commitment and often requires teachers to work extended hours. Generally, during the normal school day you would be expected to attend meetings, prepare coursework or mark homework.

Within the classroom, you would need excellent communication skills, patience and even an understanding of psychology would be beneficial.

Most importantly, you need to be enthusiastic about learning, and be able to pass that enthusiasm and interest onto your pupils.

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