Terms and Conditions of SET Membership

In signing up for SET membership, you agree to the conditions of membership outlined below. SET reserves the right to amend these terms and conditions at any time. Members will be given 14 days’ notice by email of any changes.


Last updated: September 2023

1.0 Introduction 

1.1 The Society for Education and Training (SET) is the professional body for teachers, trainers, tutors and other FE professionals in roles related to post 14 teaching, training, and learning (referred to as ‘teachers and trainers’ throughout these terms and conditions). SET is part of the Education and Training Foundation (ETF) which is a registered charity (charity number 1153859).  

1.2. These terms and conditions govern your membership of SET. By joining, re- joining or renewing your SET membership, you are agreeing to abide by these terms and conditions. These terms and conditions should be read in conjunction with SET Payment Terms and Conditions.   

1.3 Members who are undertaking or who have undertaken Professional Formation will also be bound by the terms and conditions for Qualified Teacher Learning and Skills (QTLS) and Advanced Teacher Status (ATS).  

1.4 SET will review the terms and conditions of membership annually but reserves the right to make amendments at any time. Members will be given a minimum  14 days’ notice of when the revised policy or changes will come into effect.  


2.0 Membership  

2.1 All members, irrespective of grade,  must satisfy SET’s prescribed eligibility criteria, as published on the SET website, and approved by the SET Management Board.    

2.2 There are five grades of membership – Student, Affiliate, Associate, Member and Fellow, who are referred to throughout the terms and conditions of membership as "members", and are members of SET, the professional body for teachers and trainers in the post 14 education sector, and not members as defined by the Companies Act. 

2.3 Teachers and trainers can apply for membership at any time and will be admitted into the appropriate grade of membership on meeting the published eligibility criteria and following payment of the relevant annual membership fees. The membership grades are Fellow, Member and Associate plus:  

    • Affiliate member: individuals who are not professional teachers or trainers but who have an active interest in teaching and training may join SET as an Affiliate member.  
    • Student members: individuals who are working towards the award of a teaching or training qualification, with a recognised Initial Teacher Education (ITE) provider, may join SET as a student member.   

2.4 SET has also published guidance on suitability for membership, which enables SET, in addition to the eligibility criteria for admission, to determine whether an individual is suitable for membership.  

2.5 Active members may upgrade their membership, at any time, on satisfying the prescribed criteria for the higher grade of membership.  

2.6 Membership entitles, where applicable, the use of post-nominal letters as recognition of the membership grade attained. Post nominals can only be used by individuals with an active membership.  

2.7 An application for membership, including re-joining and upgrades, shall be determined by the SET management team, whose decision shall be final.  

2.8 A percentage of all new SET members will be called for audit every six weeks and will be required to show evidence of their highest teaching qualification in order to confirm the correct membership grade. 

2.9 Failure to meet the membership eligibility criteria and/or comply with the audit requirements may result in either a change of membership grade (i.e. to Affiliate), or withdrawal from SET membership in line with these Terms and Conditions of SET Membership. 


3.0 Professional conduct 

3.1 The SET Code of Ethics and Conduct (referred to as the Code throughout this document) sets out the professional behaviours and conduct expected of SET members, including mandatory requirements.  

3.2 All members must comply and shall support the principles of the Code in force at time.  By joining SET/renewing your membership, you are agreeing to comply with the Code. This is a very important statement of what it means to be part of SET, and the levels of professionalism that are required and expected of all of our members. 

3.3 Alleged failure to abide by the provisions of the Code may lead to investigation and action under the Investigation and Disciplinary Policy and Procedures.  


4.0 Continuing Professional Development (CPD) 

SET strongly recommends that members in all professional grades of membership i.e. Associate, Member and Fellow commit to undertaken regular CPD, to continue to develop their professional skills and competencies and to further enhance their teaching and training practice. By joining, re-joining or renewing membership, members are therefore agreeing to commit to their own CPD. SET’s approach to CPD is not points or hours based. The focus is on outcomes and results. For further details please refer to SET’s full CPD policy statement.             


5.0 Your membership record 

5.1 It is important that members provide accurate information at all times, especially during the initial application process, or when renewing or re-joining SET. SET may decline or delay registration or renewal if it needs to clarify any information provided. Any deliberate attempt to supply misleading information may potentially be regarded as a breach of the Code of Ethics and Conduct, which may result in an investigation into the suitability of membership or continued membership.

5.2.  Members should take all practical steps to keep their membership information  up to date specifically contact details, teaching, and training qualifications, details of subjects taught, and employment details. This enables SET to keep members informed and to provide the best service possible, for example, regarding developments relating to teaching or training in relevant subject or vocational areas. You can add or amend your details at any time through your MySET dashboard. 


6.0 Member services 

6.1 Benefits and services provided by SET are available to members whose membership fee is up to date.  

6.2 Some benefits will only be available to specific grades of the membership e.g. QTLS application is only available to individuals who meet the eligibility criteria for Member.    

6.3 Some SET benefits and services may be made available to individuals who are not members for a fee or a higher charge if there is a member charge for the benefit or service (e.g. The annual SET Conference).   

6.4 SET is fully committed to providing its members with a range of quality services, benefits and CPD provision. It shall:  

    1. Establish and make available a range of relevant benefits, services, CPD activities and Professional Formation programmes, to support members’ professional development including access to Qualified Teacher Learning & Skills and Advanced Teacher Status (eligibility criteria applies), plus the Professional Standards for teachers, trainers and leaders and CPD content developed by the Education and Training Foundation. 

    2. Provide members with access to discounts and preferential member rates as applicable. 

    3. Offer members the opportunity to apply for a concessionary or reduced rate membership fee, subject to meeting the prescribed criteria.  

6.5 SET reserves the right to alter, amend, change, modify or withdraw the benefits and services that comprise the membership offer. It is the member's responsibility to keep up to date with any such changes. However, every attempt will be made to communicate changes in good time to the membership. 


7.0 Membership term and fees 

7.1.  The SET membership year runs between 1 April and 31 March.  

7.2 For new members or members re-joining, membership commences from the date of joining until the end of the current membership year i.e. 31 March.  

7.3 Membership of SET in each grade and access to member benefits and services including the right to use post nominals (as applicable) is conditional upon the payment of the relevant annual membership fee. 

7.4 Students undertaking an initial teaching qualification level 3 to level 5 or a PGCE from a recognised ITE provider will qualify for free Student membership of SET, whilst they are studying. The free student membership offer applies to current students and cannot be used to claim refunds for previous years’ study.   

7.5  Membership fees vary depending on the grade of membership. Details of the current membership fees can be found on our website 

7.6 Membership fees are reviewed annually and may be subject to change. All changes will be considered by the SET Management Board, when it meets in January each year and will come into force at the commencement of the next membership year (1st April). Changes to the membership fees will be communicated to members as part of the annual renewal campaign and will also be published on the SET website.   

7.7 All current members will be issued with a renewal notice approximately four to six weeks before their membership is due to renew with the exception of: 

7.7.1 Members whose membership is linked to a Corporate Partner. In such cases the membership will be auto renewed whilst your organisation remains a Corporate Partner.   

7.7.2 Students will be contacted 30 days prior to their qualification completion date, with an invitation to upgrade to the next, relevant grade of membership. Students who choose not to upgrade will have their free student membership lapsed, 30 days after completion of their qualification.     

7.8 We will also auto-renew members who pay by Direct Debit; notice of the renewal will still be given, no later than 14 days prior to the renewal being due.     

7.9 To renew membership, members must pay or make arrangements to pay (i.e. set up a Direct Debit) before the renewal date each year i.e. 1 April. 

7.10 New members are required to pay fees for the membership period, at the point of application or within 14 days of their initial application being approved.  

7.11 In the case of renewals, payment is due by the last Thursday of April each year. Renewal fees not received by this deadline will result in the membership being lapsed and all services will be suspended, including the right to use designatory letters and/or to appear on the Professional Status register. 

7.12 SET reserves the right, at its sole discretion, to charge additional administrative fees to renew membership which is renewed after the renewal date i.e. 1st April. 

7.13  SET does not accept liability if payment is refused or declined by the credit/debit card supplier, for unsuccessful or cancelled direct debits, or non-payment of employer invoices.   

7.14  You will receive a confirmation of your renewal payment by email and if you pay online, you will also receive an on-screen confirmation after payment has been made.  

7.15 Membership renewal for those using forms of payment other than Direct Debit is not automatic but is subject to receipt of payment as described above. 

7.16   A reduced membership rate is available to members who are working but on a low income and to members who are retired. Criteria applies, please visit the SET website for more information.   

7.17 Members who are unemployed, on long-term sick leave, parental leave or some form of sabbatical may be eligible to apply for a concessionary rate. Members need to apply for the concessionary rate in writing by contacting membership@etfoundation.co.uk  

7.18 If members are experiencing difficulties in paying their membership fees or if they become aware of a reason why their payment will be late, they should contact the Helpline by email membership@etfoundation.co.uk or by phone 0800 093 9111 as soon as possible to discuss their situation. SET is committed to supporting members and will assist wherever possible. 


8.0 Resignation, cancellation, termination of membership 

8.1 A member shall cease to be a member: 

- If their annual renewal fee is not paid within the stipulated timeframe or in the case of students their free student membership is not upgraded on successful completion of their ITE course. 

- By giving notice to SET. Members can resign from membership by calling 0800 093 9111 or emailing membership@etfoundation.co.uk. If no monies are owed the resignation will be processed immediately; if monies are owed, the member will be contacted for payment.  

- If, an investigation into an alleged breach of the Code of Ethics and Conduct results in the removal or suspension from membership, in accordance with the Investigation and Disciplinary Policy and Procedures.  

8.2 In addition, members shall have the right to cancel their membership within 14 days of payment being made (new members and renewals). In such cases a full refund will be given minus a 10% administration fee. 

8.3 In the event of a member resigning from membership part way through the year, SET is under no obligation to refund any membership fees already paid.  

8.4 Members who hold Qualified Teacher Learning and Skills (QTLS) status and or Advanced Teacher Status (ATS) who are not in active membership will no longer be able to use the designations QTLS and/or ATS and their details will not be included in the Professional Status Register.  

8.5 Members who are removed from membership following an investigation into an alleged breach of the Code, will have their membership fees refunded on a pro- rata basis (if they have already paid for a full membership year). 


9.0 Personal data and data security 

9.1.  SET is committed to complying with the UK General Data Protection Regulation (UK GDPR) and the Data Protection Act 2018.   

9.2 Personal data will be collected, stored and used as prescribed in our Privacy Policy and Terms of Usage. Questions about how we store and use your data can be directed to  dataprotection@etfoundation.co.uk  

9.3 SET will not give or sell individual member data to any third party, with the exception of third party organisations which are contracted on our behalf to fulfil benefits of membership. An example of this is the mailing house we use for the fulfilment of inTuition, the membership journal. Data will be shared only for the intended purpose and will be subject to a separate data sharing agreement between the Education and Training Foundation (ETF on behalf of SET, the data controller) and the organisation concerned (the data processor).  

9.4 SET may also  provide de-personalised demographic data to analysts, researchers and other third parties.  

9.5 Members who are funded by their employer under the SET Corporate Partner scheme may  also have anonymised information on the use of SET resources shared with their employer at department and institution level.  

9.6 SET recognises the importance of securing its membership data. Its website and other online resources therefore comply with industry standard security levels.  

9.7 Members should take all reasonable steps to ensure that their login details for their online members’ dashboard MYSET are secure, and passwords are protected.  

9.8 Members should take extra precautions when accessing their MySET dashboard in a public space or on a shared computer to protect their personal information. 


10.0 Communications from SET 

10.1.  Members may opt in or out of marketing communications from SET and/or the ETF at any time during membership. You can opt out of email communications by clicking on the unsubscribe link in the email that is sent to you. To opt out of telephone and postal communication or to opt back into any form of communication, please email membership@etfoundation.co.uk.  

10.2 Throughout the membership year we will need to send you communications relating to the management or administration of your membership, which do not contain marketing content such as the annual renewal and policy updates. Members are not able to opt out of service/operational emails. 


11.0 Behaviour towards our staff 

11.1 SET members have a right to be heard, understood, and respected. We work hard to be open and accessible to everyone and treat everyone fairly and impartially. We equally expect members to display courtesy and respect when dealing with our staff. We understand that members may at times feel frustrated or angry and recognise that people may act out of character in times of trouble or distress. Our staff strive to be sensitive and to be helpful in resolving matters. We consider the behaviour described below to be unacceptable: 

    • aggressive or abusive behaviour: behaviour or language (whether verbal or written) that may cause staff to be or to feel offended, afraid, threatened or abused and may include physical violence, threats, personal verbal abuse, derogatory or discriminatory remarks, rudeness, or serious allegations without any evidence. 
    • unreasonable demands on our resources by the nature and scale of the service a member expects, e.g. repeatedly demanding responses within an unreasonable timescale, placing unreasonable conditions on staff, or vexatiously changing the exact nature of the complaint or issue they are raising or raising unrelated concerns. This behaviour diverts an unreasonable proportion of our financial and human resources away from our primary functions in serving the wider membership body. It can also be difficult and stressful for staff to deal with. 
    • excessive levels of contact: When a large number of calls or emails are received from the same person in one day or over a period of time, when a person repeatedly makes long telephone calls to us or sends us repeat emails or copies of information that has been already sent or that are irrelevant to the substance of the complaint or enquiry. We consider that the level of contact has become unreasonable when the amount of time spent talking to an individual or responding to emails or written correspondence impacts on our ability to deal with the matter, or on our ability to carry out other core activities in serving the wider membership body. 

Our staff have the right to make the decision to terminate a call which they consider to be aggressive, abusive, or offensive. Where written communications are aggressive or abusive to staff, we will ask that the sender edit their correspondence to remove any offensive text and resend it, otherwise it will not be responded to. 

Where contact from a member falls into any of the categories above, we may decide to restrict or cease contact with that member. Where this is the case, we will inform the member of this decision and the reasons for it in writing. SET may choose to take action against the member under the Code of Ethics and Conduct, if we believe the member’s action constitutes a potential breach of the Code. 


12.0 Feedback and complaints procedure 

12.1 The SET team strives for excellence in everything we do. If we do not meet your expectations, please share your feedback with us by calling 0800 093 9111 or by email membership@etfoundation.co.uk.  

12.2 Should you wish to make a formal complaint about the service or lack of service you have received please refer to the SET complaints and appeals policy for further guidance.