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Teaching. But not as you know it.

Teaching in further education is unique. If you’ve got industry experience and a passion for sharing your skills you could be a great further education teacher.

 

Looking for another reason to consider it? Here’s three.

Get the best of both worlds.

Part-time or flexible contracts are available, so you can continue to work in the industry you love whilst sharing your skills in further education.

Learn to teach, while you teach.

You don’t always need a prior teaching qualification or an academic degree to get started. Plus you can complete teacher training on the job, so you can start earning right away.

Train up the next generation of workers.

Passing on your knowledge and experience to future talent can be hugely rewarding and give you the opportunity to shape the future of your industry’s workforce.

What is further education?

Further education (FE) is education for people aged 16 or over who are not studying for a degree. It includes a huge range of subjects, like: 

  • work-related courses and apprenticeships in subjects like construction, business and healthcare  
  • classroom-based subjects, like English, maths and science  
  • basic skills like reading, writing and computers  

FE teaching happens in colleges, workplaces and even places like prisons. But wherever you teach, your skills and experience could make a real difference to people’s lives.

An FE teacher using a resuscitation dummy to teach a healthcare class

What can I teach?

Select a sector below to get an idea of what you could teach.

Accounting, Business & Law

Your skills could help shape the next generation of accountants, entrepreneurs or lawyers. Combined with your own unique, real-world experience, you’ll give your learners the core skills and knowledge they need to enter their chosen profession.

From teaching the fundamentals of law or business to helping your learners develop their skills in project management, research or data analytics, your industry experience can be applied to a wide range of different topics.

You’ll even help your learners to gain a good understanding of the business environment, professionalisms or industry regulations.

Courses include:
  • Accounting & Finance
  • Business Studies
  • Management & Administration
  • Law & Legal Services

Construction

Teaching construction courses within further education is far from a traditional classroom experience.

You could teach in workshops or on-site locations, helping your learners to develop the hands-on, practical skills you’ve gained within your trade – whether that’s in bricklaying, plumbing, carpentry or other areas of construction.

You could even teach courses in specialist topics such as bathroom installation or shop fitting, as well as more general skills such as on-site health and safety.

Courses include:
  • Carpentry
  • Electrical Installation
  • Plastering
  • Plumbing

Digital & IT

Whether you’re a software developer, web designer or IT technician, you could teach a wide range of digital courses.

From teaching specialist skills like coding, software design or network cabling, to helping learners analyse problems, plan digital projects or work collaboratively in a digital environment, your skills are valuable within further education.

You could also help learners gain a broader understanding of the digital world, such as how technologies impact business, emerging digital trends, or the ethical implications of tech advances.

Courses in basic IT skills are also available, helping people in your local community to gain the essential digital skills they need for work and everyday life.

Courses include:
  • Basic IT User Skills
  • Coding
  • Computer Science
  • Data Analysis
  • Software Development

Engineering & Manufacturing

Teaching engineering or manufacturing within further education is hugely varied.

You could teach a wide range of occupation-specific, practical courses like mechanical or electrical engineering, fabrication or welding technologies or vehicle maintenance.

There are even more specialised courses like watch repair, dairy manufacturing, or aeronautical engineering.

In addition to core skills, you could also help your learners to develop a broad understanding of your relevant sector, including what it’s like to work in engineering or manufacturing, how materials and conditions can influence designs or processes, essential mathematics, or business and commercial awareness.

Courses include:
  • Mechanical or Electrical Engineering
  • Fabrication and Textiles
  • Food Manufacturing
  • Motor Vehicle Maintenance
  • Welding

Health & Social Care

From teaching human anatomy in the classroom to developing your learners’ bedside manner in a simulated workplace, there are lots of opportunities to bring your experience of working in health and social care into further education.

Your skills and knowledge will help prepare learners for work in a range of different health specialisms, including working in adult social care, in a midwifery team or as ambulance support.

You could also share your expertise on how to handle personal information or support health and wellbeing, or give real-world insight about what it’s like to work in the sector.

Courses include:
  • Child or Adult Social Care
  • Counselling and Mental Health
  • Dental Nursing
  • Emergency Care
  • Sports Therapy

Other

Whether it’s the likes of agriculture, hospitality or childcare, there are hundreds of other work-based courses available in a wide range of different sectors.

If you’ve got industry experience and a passion for sharing your skills, there’s likely a course out there for you to teach.

You can also teach academic subjects in further education like English and maths, as well as subjects like languages, art or science.

To view the full list of subject areas you can teach in FE, visit gov.uk

Courses include:
  • Agriculture
  • Catering and Hospitality
  • Childcare and Education
  • Creative and Design
  • Maths and English

Want to explore what opportunities are out there?

Find a job in FE

Join one of the many part-time teachers in further education.

Teaching on a part-time contract is quite common in further education.

Whatever your schedule there’ll be an option that works for you, whether that’s full-time, part-time alongside your current job, or a few hours a week.

Source: 2020 Education and Training Professionals Survey & 2018 College Staff Survey.

An illustration showing the working patterns of FE teachers. 30 percent work part time, 46 percent work full time, and 24 percent work flexible hours.

Hear about teaching in further education first-hand.

What's it like to teach in FE?

The Basics.

Further education teachers can work in:

  • colleges, including general colleges, sixth form colleges, land-based colleges and national specialist colleges
  • independent training providers (ITPs) in the private or charity sectors
  • adult community learning, organised by local authorities and their partners
  • workplaces
  • prisons

FE does not include:

  • universities
  • secondary schools, including school sixth forms

Depending on where you teach, you could teach young people or adults with all kinds of backgrounds and experience.

Teaching in further education is different from teaching in primary or secondary schools. FE teaching happens in places like colleges, workplaces and even prisons.

If you want to teach in schools, you will need qualified teacher status (QTS) first. There are different ways to get this depending on your circumstances. Find out more at Get Into Teaching (opens in a new tab).

Unlike schools, FE providers often let you start teaching while you work towards a qualification. This makes it a great choice if you prefer to train on the job.

A qualified further education teacher in a college can typically earn between £27,786 and £41,905.

But because further education providers are independent, salaries and benefits can vary depending on the provider, course and local area.

Other benefits can include:

  • pension schemes
  • childcare vouchers
  • cycle to work schemes
  • support with travel costs

FE teachers in colleges typically get 37 days paid leave a year, plus all bank holidays, but the exact amount of leave offered varies by provider.

Yes, absolutely. You can teach in further education alongside your current job.

Flexible contracts are readily available with opportunities to teach part-time, in the evening or even at the weekend

Find out more about what it’s like to teach in further education and how industry professionals like you have taken advantage of the flexibility it brings.

Some further education providers may give you the opportunity to do funded training while you work for them.  

This means you could get paid while completing your FE teacher training. Your employer will decide which qualification you work towards.  

This may be the best approach if: 

  • you want to start teaching FE soon 
  • there is a suitable job available at a local college or training provider  
  • you do not want to pay for teacher training yourself  

If you want to train as a further education teacher before you apply for a job, then you may be able to get financial support while you train.  

This may be the best approach if: 

  • you do not want to be committed to any one provider after you qualify 
  • you want to get a taste for FE before you commit to teaching 

You may be able to apply for a student loan to help pay for your course fees and living expenses. Depending on your subject, you could also get a tax-free bursary. Find out more about training on the job, including student loans and bursaries, on GOV.UK (link opens in a new tab). 

 

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Contact our advisers

If you have any questions, don’t hesitate to get in touch with our dedicated support team.

They’re on hand with any information you need on teaching in further education, as well as one-to-one advice on how to get there. Lines are open Monday to Friday, 9:00am to 5:30pm.