QTLS - Qualified Teacher Learning and Skills status

QTLS is a Professional Status recognised in the Education sector, which is gained after successfully completing a six-month period of Professional Formation and maintained through membership to the Society for Education and Training.

The Professional Formation programme enables you to show your progression and commitment to excellence within the Further Education and Skills sector. Once you achieve QTLS, you’ll be added to the professional register where future employers can check your status. Achieving QTLS will also allow you to teach in schools on the same terms as QTS.

More than 26,000 professionals have achieved QTLS since its introduction in 2008.


Is it right for me?

Are you a teacher or trainer working in the Further Education and Skills sector and have you completed your initial teacher training? If the answer is yes, then QTLS could be for you.

Check out what’s involved and whether you’re eligible below before applying.


What’s involved?

Unlike a qualification or course, teachers and trainers will undertake a self guided and forward looking period of Professional Formation, before submitting their portfolio to be considered for QTLS.

This requires you to complete an online portfolio demonstrating the skills and knowledge you have gained since your initial teacher training qualification. 

The Professional Formation process takes six months.

The nine sections of the Formation Process:

  1. About you
  2. Qualifications
  3. Roles and responsibilities
  4. Self Assessment
  5. Professional Development Plan
  6. Continuing Professional Development (CPD) Record
  7. Critical reflection on impact
  8. Final action plan
  9. Final supporting statement
Student And Teacher In An Art Class

Am I eligible?

To apply for QTLS status you need to be a SET member and meet the following criteria:

  • hold an eligible teaching qualification at Level 5 or above 
  • hold eligible level 2 maths and level 2 English qualifications 
  • hold a level 3 qualification in all subjects that you teach during professional formation 
  • be teaching or training in a Further Education and Training setting for a minimum of four hours a week, throughout the Professional Formation programme 
  • be regularly teaching groups of five or more post-14 learners throughout the Professional Formation programme 
  • have identified a suitable supporter

Read more about QTLS eligibility

How much does it cost?

QTLS is reasonably priced at £500.

You can pay this in full or pay a deposit of £125 followed by three further monthly direct debit payments of £125.

How do I register?

If you are a member of SET and meet the eligibility criteria you can register for Professional Formation leading to QTLS during the next registration window.

You can check your eligibility for QTLS at any point, using our online tool.

Once you’ve done that, you’ll need to nominate a supporter or mentor and then register for the Professional Formation Process.

When can I register?

We have two registration windows:

1 September - 30 September 2022, with portfolios issued in early October.

1 December 2022 - 06 January 2023, with portfolios issued in early January.

The QTLS processYour six steps to QTLS

The first thing you need to do is make sure you meet the criteria to undertake QTLS. Luckily we have a handy online eligibility checker to help you identify if you are eligible. Once you’ve checked your eligibility and you are confirmed as being eligible you can go ahead and register for QTLS, when the registration window is open.

If you aren’t already a member, you’ll need to join as QTLS is open to members only.

Once the QTLS registration window is open you can register and pay for QTLS. Payment can be made by direct debit, one-off credit card payment or by invoice to your employer.

Ideally your supporter will be someone with whom you have worked closely and who will have observed your teaching and learning practice. They must also hold a teaching qualification.

The last step is to complete and submit your online portfolio with your supporter's guidance, within the time frame.

Still image form QTLS video Watch the overview of QTLS
Audience member at an event speakign with microphone

Further QTLS help Got questions about QTLS?

Can my employer pay for my QTLS?
If your employer has agreed to pay the fees, we can issue an invoice. When registering, select 'invoice my employer'.

Can I apply for QTLS if my membership has lapsed?
No, you must be an active member of SET to be able to undertake QTLS.

Is QTLS a qualification?
No. QTLS is a badge of professionalism you achieve after completing the Professional Formation process.



Guidance on completing your application

Resources and tools to help you to complete your application for QTLS:

QTLS Stories

Learn more about the QTLS process from previous participants.

Read our members' QTLS stories


Still have questions? Browse our QTLS Help section with top tips and answers to frequently asked questions (FAQs).


QTLS and QTS parity

QTLS is recognised, by law, to hold parity with Qualified Teacher Status (QTS).

QTLS and QTS Parity

Online eligibility checker

Use our handy online tool to find out if you are eligible to apply for QTLS.

QTLS Eligibility Checker

QTLS eligibility guidance

Read the full eligibility criteria for applying for QTLS.

QTLS eligibility guidance

Initial teacher educators: QTLS guidance

Resources and guidance for introducing QTLS to trainee teachers.

Read our guidance