Careers Service

Application process

Teacher Training Application Process

Find information to help with the application process for teacher training, including information about the different application routes, skills tests and UCAS teacher training personal statements.

Researching courses

Make sure you research the courses and training providers you're interested in so that you choose the right one for you. The following websites can help with this research:

Some PGCE courses are available at professional or postgraduate level.

If you are unsure which option to choose, call in and speak to a careers adviser.

Application routes

The application process and closing dates vary depending on the training route you choose. See teaching in schools in our Occupations site to find out more about the different routes into teaching and visit the individual websites for more information on the application process.

Applying through UCAS

For PGCE, School Direct, SCITT and Postgraduate Teaching Apprenticeships, applications should be made through UCAS. 

Applications are made online through UCAS Teacher Training. Applications usually open in October. Each training provider must advertise their vacancy for a minimum of 10 days.

You will see vacancies being advertised throughout the year, and for some courses and providers, right up until training is about to start. Your initial application will be made through Apply 1.

Training providers have 40 days from receipt of your application to invite you to interview and offer you a place, or decline your application. If you are unsuccessful through Apply 1, you can make further applications through Apply 2.

UCAS Teacher Training personal statement

It's really important that your personal statement is relevant and effective

You can only submit one personal statement, even if you need to reapply through Apply 2. Think carefully about how much focus you want to place on your reasons behind choosing a particular training route, in case you need to chose a different route in Apply 2.

UCAS recommends that you write your personal statement in Word then cut and paste the text into the online application form, rather than work directly online. The personal statement section will allow you to enter 47 lines of text (about 4000 characters). Blank lines and other invisible formatting are included in this line/character count.

To make sure you keep within the line limit and permitted number of characters we recommend that you use Verdana, font size 11 and copy your text onto Notepad, or other simple text editing software, before pasting it into the application form.

Resources to help complete your application form and personal statement 

Writing a personal statement for teacher training  (PDF: 157KB) will help you get started. 

The following external websites provide advice on the application process:

Further help 

The Premier Plus service offers candidates free application support and advice from an experienced teacher. The service is available for all subjects (except PE). Register for an adviser through the Get into Teaching website.

The Careers Service runs workshops to help you prepare your personal statement. Details of these workshops are listed in Career Workshops when available. 

You can also get feedback on your personal statement via our drop-in service – please bring a printed copy with you.

Skills tests

For all teacher training courses you will need to pass numeracy and literacy skills tests. You can have unlimited resits of the tests and the first three numeracy and literacy attempts are free of charge. Training providers have different requirements about when you should sit the tests. Some require you to have passed the tests before you are interviewed and others by the time you start your training.

The Department of Education website contains information on preparing for the numeracy and literacy tests and practice questions. Details of how to apply for the tests is available on the Get into teaching website.

Reference books available in the Careers Service include:

  • Passing the Literacy Skills Test by Jim Johnson and Bruce Bond 
  • Passing the Professional Skills Tests for Trainee Teachers and Getting into ITT by Bruce Bond, Jim Johnson, Mark Patmore and Nina Weiss
  • Pass the QTS Numeracy Skills Test with Ease by Vali Nasser
  • Passing the Numeracy Skills Test by Mark Patmore

Interviews

Interviews normally take place between the start of the year and the summer but if you have applied early in the cycle you may be interviewed as early as November. The interview process varies from institution to institution, but you are likely to be given a description of what to expect in the letter of invitation. The process is similar whether you are applying for primary or secondary.

For further information see our Teacher Training Interviews page.