Frequently Asked Questions

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What is the Interview Process?

First and foremost, we are looking for teaching potential in our applicants.

We do assess applications based on qualifications and child-centred work experience but, most importantly, we are looking for evidence of a candidate’s work ethic, interest in education and passion for working with children.

We conduct interviews online or at assessment mornings.
A typical interview will include a mini-teach to a group of children, a group speaking and listening assessment, an individual ‘getting to know you’ interview with course leaders and a basic maths and English assessment.

We want to provide an interview environment in which you can shine, to help you to decide that we are the right fit and provide a welcoming experience for you to feel confident in expressing yourself and take the most away from the day. We always give feedback on our decision and request feedback from candidate’s to continually improve the experience that we offer.

What Qualifications Do I Need?

To apply, you must hold a UK Bachelors degree or recognised equivalent qualification.

GCSE grades A-C (grade 4 or above) in English language, mathematics and science (or equivalent).
An Enhanced DBS (Disclosure and Barring Service) check will be carried out on all successful applicants before starting the course.

School experience is not essential to apply for one of our courses; however, at interview we are looking for evidence of your potential to teach, through your knowledge, skills and passion, as well as the delivery of your mini-teach.

If you would like to prepare thoroughly, we would encourage you to call our course contacts to arrange getting classroom experience in one of our alliance schools, or take a look at the Get into Teaching website for more information.

What Personal Qualities Do We Look For?

We have the highest standards for our initial teacher training courses and expect our trainees to demonstrate their commitment to the course from their interview, through to graduation.

We seek applications from candidates who:

  • Are passionate about educating children to increase their life chances and opportunities
  • Are good listeners who enjoy working collaboratively
  • Understand how to learn from their mistakes
  • Are ambitious and resilient in their drive to succeed
  • Take pride in their unique vocation
  • Demonstrate a strong work ethic and professionalism
How do School Placements Work?

You will be a valued member of the staff team in all of your three school placements, and be encouraged to integrate fully into school life.

When not on assessed placement, your time will be spent in a mixture of school experience days (1/2 week) at your local ‘home school’ and training days (1/2 week).
Each term, you will have an assessed placement period, where you remain in your home school, but work all 5 days a week class, for a period of 1-2 months, depending on the term.
Over the year, you will take on an increasing percentage of the teaching time. Beginning from teaching small groups and then your first lesson, this will build to teaching the majority of the class timetable by the end of the academic year.

Your school Mentor will be there to support you every step of the way, through weekly meetings about your progress and informal check-ins, they will work with your hub’s Lead Mentor to ensure that you are learning at your own pace and gradually building your confidence.

You will be placed in your first school from September to December, where you will initially work for 1/2 of the week (the other 1/2 will be for training) and then move into the full placement period, where you spend every day in school, for six weeks from the end of October.

Over the year, you’ll spend time in a minimum of two different schools, gaining experience in KS1 and KS2 (across ages 5-11), building positive relationships with staff and pupils.

You will be in the same school for both your classroom experience days and your placement periods and will move to a different school after Christmas, in a new Key Stage.

This new school and year group will be chosen for you based on what will best suit your development journey and will reflect what we have learned about you – your passions, skills and development needs, from the autumn placement. We will always match your placements to you so that you can maximise your learning experience.

What are the Fees?

The course fees for 2022 to 2023 are as follows:

Student type Fees to pay
UK students £9,250
International Students £13,500

Most students choose to take out a student loan. If you are taking a student loan the Student Loan Company will pay your fees directly to the university. Information on Financial Support is available through Get Into Teaching.

If you decide not to take a student loan, you can pay your tuition fees online, directly to the University of Cumbria. You can pay in full or spread out the cost through a maximum of three instalments. To discuss instalments, email

Tuition fee invoices are sent electronically to student’s university and personal email accounts.

Training with Disabilities and Other Needs

We are an inclusive course and work with all potential trainees to give you the access you need at interview and throughout the course, in order to reach your potential.

All trainees undergo an occupational health assessment upon accepting their place, which will help us to guide the support offered throughout your time with us.

Through our accrediting body, the University of Cumbria, our trainees have the right to access their Student and Staff Support Services.

The Service is responsible for libraries, information advice and guidance, careers guidance and employability, learning enhancement, academic skills development, student psychological well-being, disability services and student development.

The Service can also advise students regarding finance worries and hardship funds and can provide advice on student facing policies such as complaints procedures and the Student Progress Review process.

Trainees can access university support and facilities easily and quickly via

“The School Direct route with Teach North West - Bolton hub gave me first-hand experience in the classroom from day one. From the start, I was able to work alongside experienced teachers that offered exceptional support and advice. I was amazed with how helpful everyone was throughout the year, nothing was too much for anyone. The support was second to none. Teach Bolton fully equipped me with the knowledge and skills I needed in order to progress with my career. I felt confident walking into my first classroom, ready to teach my own class.”

Trainee 2020 - now employed in one of our alliance schools.

“‘The tutors were all extremely helpful and provided fantastic out-of-classroom training too… I felt so prepared and excited to teach, a feeling I hadn’t had from my previous course.”

Trainee 2019 - now employed in our partner trust, Forward as One.

“I really enjoyed my schools direct experience and have found it extremely beneficial to how I teach today. I believe the best way of learning is through a hands on experience and that is what you get with this training. It is a fantastic opportunity to work with talented teachers and see how a classroom works from start to finish. I felt really supported throughout the training and was totally prepared to have my own class in September. I love my job as a Year 2 teacher and I wouldn't have completed my teacher training in any other way.”

Trainee 2018, now employed within a Vantage school.

“With Teach Bolton, I benefited from training in outstanding schools in Bolton. The support from the staff and the close knit relationships with peers from the course means you never feel alone.”

Trainee 2016 - now employed in our partner trust, Vantage Academies.