Preparing for Teacher Training

There are several things that you can do to best prepare yourself for training to become a teacher.

Start your teaching journey by seeking tailored advice at our Choose to Teach events

'Choose to Teach' offers a brilliant opportunity for you to meet university staff and schools and get one-to-one advice about your journey to becoming a teacher!

Decide what to teach and get experience

It may seem obvious, but it is important that you decide which age group you want to teach before you apply. If you are undecided between age groups (see below) then doing some voluntary work or going on a taster course will help you. Areas could include:

  • Contacting a local school/college to ask if you can shadow or observe a teacher
  • Taster Courses
  • Voluntary work with young people
  • Learning mentors, voluntary groups. scouts/Sunday school/sports coaching
  • Youth work in vacations
  • Private tuition

View our Preparing for Initial Teacher Training Application and Interviews advice document.

Get your references together

In most cases we ask for two references in a teacher training application. Ensure that at least one of your references is someone in the education field, for example a head teacher or head of department in a school/college. The second reference should be from an employer. Find out more about referneces and referees.

Make your application stand out from the crowd

Our teacher training courses are generally very popular and competition for places is high. Therefore you need to make your application stand out from the crowd.

Look carefully at any entry criteria given for the course you wish to apply for. 

Your application form is your opportunity to prove to us that you are ideal teacher material. Attributes that could help you stand out are:

  • Reflection on any previous experience undertaken
  • Enthusiasm and passion for your subject as well as sound subject knowledge
  • Experience of and commitment to working with young people
  • Professional attributes including leadership roles and responsibilities
  • Some personal rationale for wanting to teach
  • Good standard of written English 


For any enquiries about School Direct please e-mail