Getting into Lecturing
Your guide to a career in lecturing and further education
Careers in lecturing and further education
Whether you currently hold a teaching qualification or not, working in further education (FE) can be an appealing prospect. The sector educates more than three million students each year and offers FE lecturers the chance to work in a wide range of learning environments and with a diverse variety of students. Here’s what you need to know if a career in FE has caught your eye.
What is FE?
The FE sector encompasses the diverse range of academic, professional and vocational courses that can be completed post-secondary school.
Working in the sector offers the opportunity to lecture in a wide variety of learning environments including: an FE college, where everything from A Levels to hairdressing is taught; in adult and community education; or in a sixth form college.
Why teach in FE?
FE teachers tend to remain in the sector for much of their career, indicating a high level of job satisfaction.
The majority of students in FE are striving to improve their education and/or their career prospects for the future. The satisfaction of helping students learn, grow and achieve their goals is very rewarding, and as no two days are the same, the work remains varied and interesting. While there are certainly challenges to face, FE lecturers will also find there is support available to overcome them.
The FE sector is an excellent choice of employer when it comes to the range of career development opportunities on offer, as well as the chance to work towards new qualifications while teaching. It is also notoriously flexible – you can usually find roles that are full-time or part-time, so that you can work around other commitments.
What training do you need to teach in FE?
The type of training you need to become an FE lecturer depends on what you want to teach. You’ll need to demonstrate knowledge and expertise with qualifications in your chosen field or subject – be that plumbing or English literature – as well as a teaching qualification. However, some FE teachers are eligible to work towards a teacher training qualification on the job.
Most prospective FE teachers will either choose:
Pre-service training – usually with at least a level 3 qualification, this generally lasts around a year and includes supervised teaching placements at an FE provider.
Or in-service training – arranged by your employer to be completed part-time around your FE teaching job. Over 50% of FE teachers move into the sector in this way.
For further information on becoming an FE teacher, visit the FE Advice website.