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Further education lecturer Further education tutor, further education teacher

Further education (FE) lecturers usually teach adult learners, students over 16, and students aged 14 to 16 on work-related learning.

Salary, a pound sign Salary: £24,000 to £80,000 average per year
Hours, a clock face Hours: 35 to 37 per week

1. Entry requirements

Employers set their own entry requirements. You may be able to get a job without a teaching qualification if your skills and experience are in demand. You’ll then be expected to study while in the job.

Most people study before they get a teaching job. Teaching qualifications range from an introductory Level 3 Award in Education and Training to the Level 5 Diploma. If you have a degree, you can be awarded the Postgraduate Certificate in Education (PGCE) alongside the Diploma.

To get onto a course, you'll usually need:

  • at least a level 3 qualification in your subject
  • a degree to teach an academic subject
  • GCSEs (or equivalent) at grades 9 to 4 (A* to C) in English and maths

Some colleges may let you take the equivalent level 2 qualifications in literacy and numeracy while doing the course. You may also take a level 2 qualification in ICT.

After the Level 5 diploma, you can gain the professional status of Qualified Teacher Learning and Skills (QTLS). This is recognised as being equivalent to Qualified Teacher Status(QTS) for teaching in schools as a qualified teacher.

You’ll need a background check by the Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS).

FE Advice and Get into Teaching have more details of training, qualifications and funding.

2. Skills required

You'll need:

  • the ability to engage and motivate students of all ages and abilities
  • the ability to express yourself clearly in speech and writing
  • creativity to design activities and materials
  • organisational and planning skills

3. What you'll do

You may teach in further education, sixth-form or community colleges, adult education centres, prisons or the armed forces. You may also work for training providers.

You could teach:

  • academic subjects, leading to qualifications like GCSEs, A levels and foundation degrees
  • vocational courses for those learning trades or on apprenticeships
  • vocational diplomas in colleges or schools
  • basic skills like literacy, numeracy or English for speakers of other languages (ESOL)
  • leisure and hobby courses, like photography

You may use a variety of teaching methods like seminars, tutorials and demonstrations.

Your day-to-day tasks may include:

  • interviewing potential students and carrying out diagnostic tests
  • planning and preparing lessons and submitting plans to management
  • working with exam boards in setting and marking essays and exams
  • checking students’ progress and acting as a personal tutor
  • working with course teams to develop new courses and teaching materials
  • carrying out admin tasks like keeping records and ordering resources
  • taking part in meetings and events like open days
  • attending training courses and keeping up with professional development
  • supervising practical work within health and safety guidelines

4. Salary

Starter: £24,000

Experienced: £36,000 to £40,000

Highly Experienced: £40,000 to £80,000 (leadership and management)

Part-time hourly rates vary between £15 and £35 an hour.

These figures are a guide.

5. Working hours, patterns and environment

You'll usually work up to 37 hours a week, with teaching time of around 24 hours. You may be expected to work at least one evening a week, and sometimes on Saturday mornings.

You could teach full time, part time (day or evening) or on day-release courses.

You could work in a classroom, workshop or laboratory and may need to wear safety equipment.

You could travel to accompany students on field trips.

6. Career path and progression

With experience, you could become a senior lecturer or head of department, or move into management.

You could also become an assessor or verifier.

Another option is to become an examiner, or write textbooks or online resources.

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Last updated: 13 September 2017