Apply for ATS

Find out how to apply for Advanced Teacher Status (ATS) and complete your e-portfolio. 

You can register your interest at any time for a place on the next ATS cohort which starts in October 2019. (Cohort 5). To register your interest and download or receive a detailed brochure on ATS in the post, please complete a registration of interest form.

Please note: Completing a registration of interest form is not the same as applying for ATS - the registration of interest form will allow us to send you a brochure explaining more about the ATS process; however, you will still need to follow the application process outlined below.

The registration window is now open (from 1 April). You can apply for a place on cohort 5 between April and August.

If you are interested in applying for ATS, these are the steps you will need to follow:

  1. Join as a member of SET - if you are not one already.
  2. Check you meet the eligibility criteria
  3. Download and complete an ATS Application Form
  4. Complete one or two Supporting Testimonies forms.
  5. Provide a CV outlining evidence of subject knowledge, qualifications and previous employment.
  6. Submit all of the above to

Applications are reviewed in the order they are received, so it is advisable to apply early. 

Read the ATS terms and conditions

What to expect after you apply 

Once the application window has closed, applications will be reviewed during September. Notification of the outcome will be sent to applicants by the end of September. The e-portfolio will be issued on 1 October and an introductory webinar will take place towards by the end of October. The process lasts 12 months, so completion will be September 2020. 

Fees for ATS

The cost of undertaking ATS is £750. Payment can be made in direct debit instalments with an initial payment of just £150 required on acceptance of a place followed by six payments of £100.

ATS portfolio requirements 

Significant professional development activity will be core to the process, which is underpinned by the 20 Professional Standards - a framework developed by the Education and Training Foundation (ETF) for teachers and trainers to critically appraise their own practice and improve their teaching through Continuing Professional Development (CPD).

Sections of the online portfolio will include the following:

  • Introduction: Your role and responsibilities, motivation for undertaking ATS and evidence you meet the entry criteria. 
  • Professional development plan: A self-assessment to identify professional standard focus, rationale and anticipated impact of the professional development.
  • Improvement project or case study: Documenting professional development activity undertaken during the process relevant to the mandatory Professional Standards, and other specialist standards relevant to your area of focus.
  • Case studies, reports and research: The positive impact of the process on others in your organisation, and your organisation's quality improvement strategy, supported by evidence of your mastery in teaching or training.
  • Final action plan: Demonstrating how you will continue to develop your practice on achievement of ATS. 

ATS deadlines for each stage

Please refer to the below timetable for further information.


Stage 1

Stage 2

Stage 3

Stage 4


Application registration

Workbooks issued

Deadline for submitted completed workbook

Workbooks reviewed

Results released

Deadline for resubmission (if applicable)


1 April 2019 – 31 August 2019


1 October 2019


5pm, 30 September 2020


October 2020




5pm, 31 March 2020

Review of ATS portfolios

The ETF will be responsible for the accreditation and management of the status through SET. Applications will be reviewed by highly experienced SET reviewers and moderated by the SET Lead Moderators. It is likely that a face-to-face viva interview will form part of the review process.

Participants' portfolios will be reviewed against three broad criteria:

  • authenticity
  • sufficiency
  • reliability.

Feedback will be provided by SET reviewers. If unsuccessful, participants may have an opportunity to re-apply based on the feedback provided by the participant's reviewer.

Support for participants during the process

Participants will be supported throughout the process by a mentor. Ideally, the mentor should be a more experienced colleague working in their organisation or professional network. Alternatively, you can request a mentor from SET. It remains your responsibility to nominate a mentor before starting your portfolio. 

The role of the mentor will include:

  • supporting you in scoping your professional development plan
  • providing support with action planning
  • providing support during the process through professional discussion
  • writing a supporting statement once you have completed their portfolio. 

Mentors are encouraged to undertake SET’s online mentoring programme.

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