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The 4 routes to apply for QTS: the differences and which one is best?

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The Department for Education (DofE) is allowing teachers from abroad to come live and work as a teacher in England from the 1st of February 2023.

How teachers can accomplish this depends on which of the four categories they fall into based on their qualification.

1. The QTS Route

Overseas teachers can apply straight to becoming a recognised teacher in England via the new government portal from their home or resident country. To be eligible, teachers must meet the full requirements, these are different for varying countries – read more here.

This route is predominantly certificate-focused with at least 1 year experience in teaching. Its the only one that does not require any exchange of fees to any training institutions.

READ MORE: The Nigerian teaching certificates that may qualify you for English QTS

2. Assessment-only QTS

The assessment-only QTS is aimed at people who entered teaching through practical experience. Full requirements is here.

Teachers with at least 2 years teaching experience (plus other requirements) need to apply to approved institutions that offer the dedicated course in their resident country. It takes around 6-12 weeks to complete, and has the cheapest fees among the other fee paying routes.

3. Train to Teach in England

This programme offer teachers the option to apply and study for a QTS in England as an international student – see detailed requirement here.

Fees for international students are from £12,000 upwards, depending on the institution.

4. international Qualified Teacher Status (iQTS)

iQTS is same as QTS in that when you successfully pass it, you will be recognised as though you are QTS qualified (subject to an induction period). However no experience is required for iQTS and its fees are a small proportion lower than Train to Teach as you do not have to come to the UK to study for the course.

Which QTS option is best?

There are multiple reasons why one may be a better option than the other.

All four options have requirements in common such as candidates must have a degree, they must also have maths and science GCSE grade 4 equivalent qualification.

The differences are the varying levels of practical classroom experience and fees.

QTS is the cheapest, you only pay a small fee to the Teaching Regulations Agency. Assessment-only is the next cheapest as its heavily practical-based. The other two are expensive options given they are both theory and practical. All except the Train to Teach can be done in country of residence.

The good news is, all of the courses lead to one goal – getting your QTS recognition. Which one you choose should be based on weighing your educational and professional requirement against what the government set out, and looking at your circumstance and preference.

Read more Routes to qualified teacher status (QTS) for teachers and those with teaching experience outside the UK
GetIntoTeaching: Train to be a teacher
GetIntoTeaching: Get international qualified teacher status (iQTS)

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