Guidance

Teacher subject specialism training courses

Find and apply for free teacher subject specialism training in England. Courses are available in secondary mathematics, core maths, physics and modern foreign languages.

Overview

The purpose of teacher subject specialism training is to improve the subject knowledge of non-specialist teachers and returning teachers, and increase the number of hours taught.

Teacher subject specialism training in mathematics and physics was launched in 2015 to 2016 and aims to build the capacity of non-specialists who may be able to move into a mathematics or physics role. In addition, it aims to upskill non-specialists who are currently teaching mathematics or physics and those looking to return to the profession. In 2017 to 2018, we have also added teacher subject specialism training in core maths for teachers in secondary schools and sixth-form colleges.

Teacher subject specialism training in secondary modern foreign languages (MFL) was launched in 2016 to 2017 to build additional capacity to provide the English Baccalaureate (EBacc). In addition to non-specialists and returning teachers, this programme is available to specialist MFL teachers who are not currently teaching MFL but who need refresher training, to enable a move back to an MFL role. This training could also be of benefit to teachers who may be able to teach a second language in addition to their specialist subject.

This training is free of charge for participants.

For secondary mathematics, core maths and physics, eligible participants include:

  • non-specialist teachers who could potentially teach secondary mathematics, core maths or physics in addition to, or as their main subject
  • non-specialist teachers who are currently teaching mathematics, core maths or physics (either full-time or in addition to the specialist subject)
  • teachers who are looking to return to the profession

In addition to non-specialists and returning teachers, teacher subject specialism training in modern foreign languages (MFL) also targets specialist MFL teachers who are not currently teaching MFL but who need refresher training, to enable a move back to an MFL role. This training could also be of benefit to teachers who may be able to teach a second language in addition to their specialist subject. Eligible participants for this include:

  • teachers not currently teaching MFL with post A level MFL qualifications
  • teachers not currently teaching MFL who have good A level qualifications
  • teachers not teaching MFL who are native/ near native speakers
  • non-specialist teachers currently teaching MFL in addition to their specialist subject
  • specialist MFL teachers who are not currently teaching MFL and who need refresher training to enable a move back to an MFL role
  • specialist MFL teachers who have the capacity to teach a new language in addition to their language specialism
  • teachers who are looking to return to the profession
  • overseas trained teachers

Other eligibility criteria

  • Newly qualified teachers (NQTs) are eligible.
  • Primary teachers are only eligible if they will be teaching year 7/8 pupils as part of cross-school key stage 2/3 collaboration (for example in a multi-academy trust (MAT)) or if they have firm plans to convert from primary to a secondary teaching post.
  • Participants who are members of and have been awarded qualified teacher learning and skills status (QTLS) by the Society for Education are eligible for the programme if they have firm plans to teach a teacher subject specialism training subject in a secondary school or sixth-form college.
  • Supply teachers and peripatetic teachers are eligible only if they do not have a contract with a school and are committed to returning to a permanent post in a secondary school or sixth-form college.
  • Teachers without qualified teacher status (QTS) working in academies are eligible for the programme.
  • Participants may undertake a second teacher subject specialism training programme only where they can show that it will lead to an increase in their teaching hours in that subject. This will be by exception and DfE will consider this on a case-by-case basis.
  • Overseas trained teachers should be resident and eligible to work in the UK, and actively seeking a post in secondary school or sixth-form college.

Ineligible participants

Participants who are not eligible include:

  • initial teacher training (ITT) trainees
  • higher level teaching assistants (HLTAs)
  • teaching assistants (TAs) and other support staff
  • teachers from independent schools
  • further education (FE) teachers

If you are interested in this training you can find opportunities using the directory below. You can apply directly to the school group that is offering training in your local area or that best meets your learning needs.

The majority of courses on offer involve training during term time. If you are a serving teacher and would like to take part, you should discuss this with your school before making contact with the schools listed in the directory.

If you are a returning teacher, please register with the Department for Education (DfE). Please visit Get into Teaching for further information and additional support for teachers returning to the profession.

Apply

Please use the teacher subject specialism training directory to identify and apply for courses relevant to you.

Teacher subject specialism training directory

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Teacher subject specialism training directory

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Teachers and schools

A number of subject associations and professional organisations offer professional development opportunities for teachers, such as the Association for Language Learning who support and represent teachers of all languages in all sectors. Further information about opportunities in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) subjects can be found in A guide to STEM continuing professional development (CPD) opportunities for teachers (PDF, 274KB, 15 pages) .

Many higher education institutes (HEIs) offer subject specific professional development for teachers. Please contact your local HEI for more information.

Contact us

Teacher subject specialism training

Published 14 March 2016
Last updated 28 February 2018 + show all updates
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