English

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Become an English teacher

An English teacher helps young people express themselves and enables their ideas and views to be heard.

It provides them with the skills they need to help develop their critical thinking, and their ability to communicate with others through conversation and the written word.

It’s a subject that allows you to really engage with a class and with individuals. Drawing from literature, theatre, film, and other media, you can ignite a love of words and an understanding of the human condition.

In your classroom, young minds will discover the English language’s power to entertain, provoke, inspire and surprise. All from just 26 letters.

Student Enjoying School
"As an English teacher, you help develop a young person’s core skills of reading, writing, talking and listening by engaging them with fantastic literature and by embracing and dissecting current affairs. There is so much discussion in an English classroom and, when it’s taught well, pupils love it." Barry Wright – Principal Teacher of English at Vale of Leven Academy
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What being an English teacher covers:

  • Organising and setting lessons
  • Monitoring the progress of pupils, through coursework and homework
  • Working with pupils to guide their development and share that progress with parents and caregivers
  • Planning, supervising and leading study trips.

Take that next step into English

It’s a career choice that comes with a good starting salary and great opportunities for progression. To begin your journey, you need to have a degree in English plus a Professional Graduate Diploma in Education (PGDE) or a degree that combines education with English studies.

Four-year university course in education

For the four-year combined degree and other undergraduate degree programmes you must have at least:

  • English and two other National Qualifications at SCQF Level 6 (Higher) and
  • Mathematics and one other subject at SCQF Level 5 (or an accepted alternative, for example, National 5, Credit Standard Grade or Intermediate 2).

Check the entry requirements with the course provider.

Universities you can study in

PGDE university courses

Here are the universities you can study for a PDGE in English at secondary level. Entry requirements vary so it’s best to check with the course provider for the most up-to-date information.

Universities you can study in

Alternate routes into teaching

This route offers a little more flexibility in order to encourage diversity in the profession:

University of Edinburgh – MSc in Transformative Learning and Teaching is a two-year programme. Graduates from this programme achieve a full master’s degree, together with a teaching qualification that allows individuals to work across the primary/secondary transition.

Every teacher has a story.
What will yours be?

Whether you’re getting ready for a new term, planning your next class, or helping pupils prepare for exams, there’s always something going on. There are challenges, just as there are with any job. But you’ll be supported. And you’ll find other teachers are there to help you, and share their experiences.

Read about some proud moments from teachers
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