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Initial teacher training (ITT): accreditation and support

Find out how to become an accredited provider of initial teacher training (ITT) and what support is available.

This guidance is for:

  • organisations seeking ITT accreditation
  • newly accredited providers of ITT

Eligibility criteria

You can only provide courses that lead to a recommendation for qualified teacher status (QTS) if you are accredited by the Department for Education (DfE).

We will only consider schools for accreditation that have been judged good or outstanding by Ofsted.

Accreditation process

The accreditation process is set out in the Arrangements for ITT accreditation submissions.

Your first step in the accreditation process is to attend a potential new provider briefing session.

Contact our accreditation team if you would like to attend a briefing session. Places are strictly limited to 2 attendees per organisation.

When requesting places:

  • provide details of the organisation seeking accreditation, including your address, and latest section 5 Ofsted grade if you’re a school
  • specify if you’re a teaching school and/or academy trust

We’ll then ask you to submit a business case. We will assess it and offer feedback. Once approved, you need to prepare and submit a full accreditation bid. The business case and full bid should meet the criteria set out in the Arrangements for ITT accreditation submissions document.

ITT criteria

In order to be accredited, you must design training which meets the Secretary of State for Education’s ITT criteria. You need to ensure that all programmes of ITT comply with the criteria. The ITT criteria also includes the withdrawal of accreditation criteria.

You must ensure that all trainees are assessed against the Teachers’ Standards.

Ofsted will inspect you in accordance with the Ofsted initial teacher education framework.

Support for newly accredited providers

For newly accredited providers we will arrange quality assurance visits from a team of ITT experts. They will visit you:

  • following accreditation
  • in your first year of provision
  • in your second year of provision (prior to your first Ofsted inspection)

Our team of ITT experts will:

  • quality assure your ITT provision in line with the statutory ITT criteria
  • advise and guide you by helping with action plans and making recommendations
  • help you monitor and evaluate your progress

These visits are supportive and will help you to reflect on the quality of your provision. They concentrate on improving practice to ensure high-quality outcomes for trainees.

There is also an online community that provides support and aims to improve practice for ITT providers.

Information, resources and notices are available on Knowledge Hub. This is a restricted online community for ITT providers only, to:

  • provide mutual support
  • discuss relevant issues
  • access the latest information and guidance for ITT

To register for the community:

  • register with Knowledge Hub
  • search for ‘ITT provider support community’ to become a member


Email us if you have any questions or if you’d like to receive support.

Initial teacher training (ITT) accreditation

Email[email protected]

This email address is for potential new and accredited ITT providers. If you’re a potential candidate, wishing to gain qualified teacher status (QTS), please visit

Published 15 April 2014
Last updated 3 April 2019 + show all updates

  1. Added information about the support available to newly accredited providers, and an online community called Knowledge Hub.
  2. First published.

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