QTLS eligibility

Are you eligible to undertake the period of professional formation leading to Qualified Teacher Learning Skills (QTLS?) status?  

Failure to follow the below eligibility criteria carefully and in full may lead to your not being awarded QTLS status at the end of the process.

To be eligible to undertake the period of professional formation leading to QTLS, we would expect prospective participants to hold the following qualifications and information, prior to registration. 

  1. A recognised teaching qualification at Level 5 or above.

  1. Level 2 maths and English qualifications.

  1. Level 3 maths and/or English for those who teach any discrete delivery of those subjects, regardless of the level or context being taught. 

  1. Evidence of current practice, for example, timetable, which demonstrates a minimum of two hours per week regular teaching practice in a full teaching rolethroughout the duration of the professional formation process, with post-14 learner groups, for example, Year 10, Year 11 and above/adults. 

  1. Identified a suitable supporter.

  1. Membership of SET.

See our list of approved teaching qualifications equivalent to the Diploma in Education and Training (DET). 

Before you register for professional formation leading to QTLS status, please read our eligibility rules. It is the obligation and responsibility of the member to ensure that they are eligible, therefore failure to follow the eligibility criteria in full may lead to your not being awarded QTLS status at the end of the process.

1. A recognised teaching qualification at Level 5 or above

To apply for QTLS, you need a teacher education (ITE) qualification at Level 5 or above, for example a Diploma in Education and Training (DET) or Diploma in Teaching in the Lifelong Learning Sector (DTLLS).

The opportunity to undertake professional formation is principally aimed at teachers or trainers with a DET or PGCE (FE) who are teaching learners in years 10, 11 or above/adults in further education and training settings.

However, practitioners with the equivalent qualifications working in a range of other settings are also eligible to apply. You will need a quallification that includes a practical teaching component requiring the logging of 100 hours of teaching and eight observations of your teaching practice. 

Potential applicants who hold qualifications other than a DET, a PGCE, or a qualification listed on the link above, should check the equivalence of their teaching qualification prior to registering by contacting professional.formation@etfoundation.co.uk.

Teachers working in schools

If you hold a Further Education ITE qualification and are currently working in either a primary or secondary school, you are eligible to apply for professional formation leading to QTLS. However, you will be required to demonstrate in your application that you are continuing to teach learners aged 14+ years (Year 10, Year 11 and above/adults), thereby developing skills and knowledge relevant to the further education and skills sector.  For example, you could provide the required evidence if your role involves sufficient teaching with staff, parents or carers engaged in family learning programmes, i.e. for a minimum of two hours per week regular teaching practice in a full teaching role throughout the duration of the professional formation process.

Teachers with a PGCE and QTS

If you have trained as a teacher to work in schools and have a PGCE with QTS and you are currently working in the FE and skills sector, you are also eligible to apply. 

If you have trained as a teacher to work in secondary schools and are currently teaching learners aged 14+ (Year 10, Year 11 and above/adults) and you would like to gain QTLS to work in the FE sector, you can also apply. 

If you have trained as a teacher to work in primary schools, whilst you are eligible to apply, you will be required to demonstrate in your application how you are continuing to teach learners aged 14+ years, thereby developing skills and knowledge relevant to the further education and skills sector.

Teachers with overseas qualifications

If you have an initial teacher education qualification from a country other than England, Wales or Northern Ireland and you are currently employed as a teacher in England, you may be eligible to apply. To check that your overseas qualification can be accepted, please email the professional formation team (professional.formation@etfoundation.co.uk) with a scanned copy of your qualification and UK NARIC statement. The NARIC statement of comparability must confirm that your qualification entitles you to teach in the country where it was gained. 

To check that your overseas qualification can be accepted, please email the professional formation team (professional.formation@etfoundation.co.uk) with a scanned copy of your qualification and UK NARIC statement. The NARIC statement must confirm that your teaching qualification is equivalent to Level 5 and entitles you to teach in your  the country where the certificate was awarded. Please ensure that you have checked your eligibility with SET before you register for professional formation. Please note, we do not accept the PGCEi(i) to register for professional formation leading to QTLS,unless you can demonstrate that it has a credit value of 120 and includes a practical teaching component requiring the logging of 100 hours of teaching and eight observations of your teaching practice. 

You will also need to provide some additional evidence as part of your portolio in the self-assessment self-assessmentsection. When completing the professional standards self-assessment tool, in addition to including reflective comments for each of the 20 Professional Standards, you will need to provide specific examples of how you meet each of the standards in your current teaching role. 

Recently qualified teachers

If you are a recently qualified teacher, you must have received your initial teacher education certificate before registering for professional formation. The earliest you can submit your completed portfolio to SET is six months following achievement of your ITE qualification. This is because the professional formation process has been designed to enable teachers to demonstrate how they are continuing to develop their practice in their new role following completion of their ITE programmes. Please note, therefore, that we cannot accept any supporting evidence for professional formation from your initial teacher education programme or prior to the date of registration.

2. Level 2 maths and English qualifications

If you are applying for professional formation leading to QTLS, you are also required to have maths and English qualifications at (or above) Level 2. View a list of approved qualifications currently acceptable for maths and English at Level 2 and 3. 

If your maths and English qualifications were gained overseas, you will need to obtain a letter from UK NARIC that confirms that your qualifications are equivalent to a UK Level 2 (GCSE grades A*–C/9-4). 

Note: If you hold a schools PGCE qualification or other schools-focused initial teacher education qualification, but have not achieved QTS and you are currently working in a primary or secondary school, in order to register for QTLS, you will be required to demonstrate that you have passed the Professional Skills tests in Numeracy and Literacy. 

3. Teachers of maths and English

If you are applying for professional formation leading to QTLS and you teachdeliver discrete lessons of maths or English (numeracy, GCSE, Functional Skills or ESOL) in either the FE and skills sector or in schools, regardless of the level or context in which the subjects are being taught, you will also need to hold maths and English qualifications at a minimum of level 3, such as ‘A’ Level Maths or English or Level 3 Award in Mathematics for Numeracy teaching or Level 3 Award in English for Literacy and Language teaching. Please note that if you include observation reports in your portfolio of maths and/or English teaching, then you will need to provide evidence of holding a Level 3 qualification. View a list of approved qualifications currently acceptable for maths and English at Level 2 and 3. 

If you teach in a SEND setting or department and you deliver a lifeskills curriculum which includes development of maths and English skills embedded within the delivery, we would not expect to see evidence of a level 3 qualification. However, if your timetable and/or portfolio highlights you deliver discrete sessions of maths and English, a Level 3 qualification will be required.  

4. Evidence of current practice

You will also be required to provide evidence in your application drawn from regular current practice with post-14 learners, in other words, a minimum of two hours per week in a full teaching role throughout the professional formation process, from the date of registering for professional formation. No evidence will be acceptable prior to the date of registration, as the professional formation process has been designed as a forward looking CPD opportunity that will take a minimum of four to six months to complete. 

If you are recently qualified, you will need to be able to provide evidence of practice generated post qualification, in order to demonstrate how you are continuing to develop the skills and knowledge gained during your ITE programme. If you are not currently employed in a full or part time teaching role, you may want to consider undertaking some teaching in a voluntary capacity, in order to be able to generate the evidence that will be required in your application. We would expect voluntary teaching to include responsibility for regular teaching practice which involves planning, delivery and assessment with a group/s of learners (five or more learners). 

You will need to be teaching for at least two hours a week during the professional formation period, so that you can demonstrate developments in your teaching skills and subject specialist knowledge. If you are also teaching in a one-to-one setting, it is possible to use evidence from this practice for professional formation; however, you must be able to produce evidence for the final observation in your portfolio of at least one observation from a group teaching context (five or more learners).  

5. A supporter

You will be required to identify a ‘Supporter’ or critical friend when you begin completing your portfolio, who will be able to support you throughout the process of professional formation. He or she will be a qualified teacher, they and will need to be able to support and comment on your developing practice during the process and write a statement when you have completed your portfolio before you can submit your application for review.  

6. Membership of SET

If you are applying for professional formation leading to QTLS, your SET membership should be up to date.

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