Teaching and training is about helping someone reach their full potential, whether this is for personal or professional reasons. The further education and skills sector includes learners from age 14 upwards who will be in many different environments such as schools, colleges, the workplace, prisons, private and voluntary organisations. You have the opportunity to help make a difference to someone's life and career. It can be extremely rewarding to know that you have helped them perform a new skill, acquire new knowledge, gain a qualification or a promotion at work.

What to teach

Once you have made the decision that you would like to teach, you need to have a specialist subject in mind. Perhaps you have a profession, hobby, interest or trade that you feel you are good at. Depending upon what you are going to teach and where you will teach, you may not need to be qualified in your specialist subject, but be able to demonstrate appropriate skills and knowledge at a particular level. For example, some subjects require you to have a level above that which you will teach, i.e., holding a level 3 qualification to teach it at level 2. Others might not require you to hold a subject qualification at all, but just have the necessary skills and knowledge. There are Sector Skills Councils and Standard Setting Bodies who make these decisions for most subjects.

Where to teach

Teaching and training can take place anywhere that someone needs to learn something. It doesn't just have to be in a school, college or a university. For example, you might like to give up your current career and teach full time in a sixth form college, teach part time in a prison, train people on the job where you currently work, work via an agency at different organisations or volunteer your services for free at a charity.

How to teach

If your subject is theoretical, you could use lectures, presentations and discussions. If your subject is practical, you could use demonstrations, physical activities and role plays. What you do need to consider is how your learning will take place. If you can use a variety of approaches and activities, this will give your learners more chances to be involved, ask questions and to learn.

Besides teaching, you will need to plan your sessions, prepare your materials and resources, assess your learners' progress and achievement, give feedback to them and evaluate what you have done.

Skills needed to teach

You need to have skills that will help you convey your subject such as passion, confidence and enthusiasm. You also need to have patience, and be able to inspire and motivate your learners regarding your specialist subject. This might take some practice depending upon the age range of your learners. You will have administrative work to carry out therefore having the ability to be organised will help, as will being dedicated to your role and acting in a professional manner.

Professional standards for teachers and trainers

The Education and Training Foundation have a set of standards for teachers and trainers in education and training in England. You might like to take a look at them to see what you can aspire to.

Teaching qualifications

In 2013, the Government removed the requirement for teachers in the sector to be qualified. It's now the responsibly of the individual employer to make the decision. However, most people in a teaching or training role will want to do it properly, and organisations will want to give a quality service to their learners by having qualified staff.

You could take the Level 3 Award in Education and Training, a short introductory course which is offered nationwide. The Award is ideal if you are not yet in a teaching role, have just started teaching, or just want to know what's involved. It will give you the basics of how to plan, deliver and assess. You can then take a further teaching qualification if required. The Level 4 Certificate and the Level 5 Diploma in Education and Training (or Cert Ed/PGCE) require you to have teaching practice hours (30 and 100 respectively).

There might be grants, loans and bursaries available to help with your costs, particularly in certain skill shortage areas such as construction, maths and science.

Text books and resources

Click these links for reading lists by a variety of authors for the Award, the Certificate and the Diploma. There are direct links to Amazon where you can view samples of most of the books and read reviews.

Resources for teachers and learners of the qualifications can be found here.

Applying for a teaching position

You will need to research organisations that might require teachers or trainers in your specialist subject. You could find out what colleges and training organisations there are in your location and politely contact them to ask if they have any positions available. If they do, ask for an application form. If they don't, ask if you can send them your curriculum vitae for them to keep on file. Don't be put off by rejection, you need to persevere and stay positive.

If you are, attending a course at the moment, you could talk to the tutor and ask them if they know of any teaching opportunities. You could even ask if you could sit in on a session which is being delivered in your subject area. This will help you see what is involved for your particular subject. You could make some useful contacts this way and perhaps offer to do some voluntary teaching. This would give you some great experience which would help when applying for jobs.

When applying for a job, resist the temptation of taking whatever might be offered to you. Sadly, there are some organisations that are more focused upon reaching targets and obtaining money than the teaching and learning experience. This might not lead to a happy working environment and you could feel pressured to do things you know are wrong. Always ask what the quality procedures are in the organisation. If there is a good system for supporting staff and ensuring a quality service, it shows the organisation is committed to learning and not just focused on money.

Websites advertising teaching and training jobs

You might find it useful to look at the following site, and sign up for their updates when jobs in your specialist subject and location are advertised: www.fecareers.co.uk

Ann Gravells is an author and education consultant. She can be contacted via her website: www.anngravells.co.uk
You can follow her on Twitter @AnnGravells

You may also be interested in these articles:

Sponsored Video

Register, Login or Login with your Social Media account:


Upcoming FE Events

Advertiser Skyscrapers

Latest Education News

Further Education News

The FE News Channel gives you the latest education news and updates on emerging education strategies and the #FutureofEducation and the #FutureofWork.

Providing trustworthy and positive Further Education news and views since 2003, we are a digital news channel with a mixture of written word articles, podcasts and videos. Our specialisation is providing you with a mixture of the latest education news, our stance is always positive, sector building and sharing different perspectives and views from thought leaders, to provide you with a think tank of new ideas and solutions to bring the education sector together and come up with new innovative solutions and ideas.

FE News publish exclusive peer to peer thought leadership articles from our feature writers, as well as user generated content across our network of over 3000 Newsrooms, offering multiple sources of the latest education news across the Education and Employability sectors.

FE News also broadcast live events, podcasts with leading experts and thought leaders, webinars, video interviews and Further Education news bulletins so you receive the latest developments in Skills News and across the Apprenticeship, Further Education and Employability sectors.

Every week FE News has over 200 articles and new pieces of content per week. We are a news channel providing the latest Further Education News, giving insight from multiple sources on the latest education policy developments, latest strategies, through to our thought leaders who provide blue sky thinking strategy, best practice and innovation to help look into the future developments for education and the future of work.

In Jan 2021, FE News had over 173,000 unique visitors according to Google Analytics and over 200 new pieces of news content every week, from thought leadership articles, to the latest education news via written word, podcasts, video to press releases from across the sector, putting us in the top 2,000 websites in the UK.

We thought it would be helpful to explain how we tier our latest education news content and how you can get involved and understand how you can read the latest daily Further Education news and how we structure our FE Week of content:

Main Features

Our main features are exclusive and are thought leadership articles and blue sky thinking with experts writing peer to peer news articles about the future of education and the future of work. The focus is solution led thought leadership, sharing best practice, innovation and emerging strategy. These are often articles about the future of education and the future of work, they often then create future education news articles. We limit our main features to a maximum of 20 per week, as they are often about new concepts and new thought processes. Our main features are also exclusive articles responding to the latest education news, maybe an insight from an expert into a policy announcement or response to an education think tank report or a white paper.

FE Voices

FE Voices was originally set up as a section on FE News to give a voice back to the sector. As we now have over 3,000 newsrooms and contributors, FE Voices are usually thought leadership articles, they don’t necessarily have to be exclusive, but usually are, they are slightly shorter than Main Features. FE Voices can include more mixed media with the Further Education News articles, such as embedded podcasts and videos. Our sector response articles asking for different comments and opinions to education policy announcements or responding to a report of white paper are usually held in the FE Voices section. If we have a live podcast in an evening or a radio show such as SkillsWorldLive radio show, the next morning we place the FE podcast recording in the FE Voices section.

Sector News

In sector news we have a blend of content from Press Releases, education resources, reports, education research, white papers from a range of contributors. We have a lot of positive education news articles from colleges, awarding organisations and Apprenticeship Training Providers, press releases from DfE to Think Tanks giving the overview of a report, through to helpful resources to help you with delivering education strategies to your learners and students.


We have a range of education podcasts on FE News, from hour long full production FE podcasts such as SkillsWorldLive in conjunction with the Federation of Awarding Bodies, to weekly podcasts from experts and thought leaders, providing advice and guidance to leaders. FE News also record podcasts at conferences and events, giving you one on one podcasts with education and skills experts on the latest strategies and developments.

We have over 150 education podcasts on FE News, ranging from EdTech podcasts with experts discussing Education 4.0 and how technology is complimenting and transforming education, to podcasts with experts discussing education research, the future of work, how to develop skills systems for jobs of the future to interviews with the Apprenticeship and Skills Minister.

We record our own exclusive FE News podcasts, work in conjunction with sector partners such as FAB to create weekly podcasts and daily education podcasts, through to working with sector leaders creating exclusive education news podcasts.

Education Video Interviews

FE News have over 700 FE Video interviews and have been recording education video interviews with experts for over 12 years. These are usually vox pop video interviews with experts across education and work, discussing blue sky thinking ideas and views about the future of education and work.


FE News has a free events calendar to check out the latest conferences, webinars and events to keep up to date with the latest education news and strategies.

FE Newsrooms

The FE Newsroom is home to your content if you are a FE News contributor. It also help the audience develop relationship with either you as an individual or your organisation as they can click through and ‘box set’ consume all of your previous thought leadership articles, latest education news press releases, videos and education podcasts.

Do you want to contribute, share your ideas or vision or share a press release?

If you want to write a thought leadership article, share your ideas and vision for the future of education or the future of work, write a press release sharing the latest education news or contribute to a podcast, first of all you need to set up a FE Newsroom login (which is free): once the team have approved your newsroom (all content, newsrooms are all approved by a member of the FE News team- no robots are used in this process!), you can then start adding content (again all articles, videos and podcasts are all approved by the FE News editorial team before they go live on FE News). As all newsrooms and content are approved by the FE News team, there will be a slight delay on the team being able to review and approve content.

 RSS IconRSS Feed Selection Page