Considering embarking on a career in teaching – whether you are fresh out of university or looking for a career change – is a big decision and there are many routes and pathways to choose from.

To give you some guidance and help you to make the right choices for you, we have compiled a list of our most frequently asked questions.

Why teach?

Quite simply, there is nothing like it. Every day is different when you work with the next generation; it keeps you young.

It’s a hard job and there is lots to do away from the classroom but once you are in there – moulding a young person’s life and making a positive difference – there is nothing better. We personally couldn’t imagine doing anything else.

Why the Diverse Association for Professional Learning?

We are a small team with bags of experience and have a trainee-centred approach to teacher training.

We know all of our schools and academies very well and have established strong relationships over the years. We give trainees the opportunity to choose their main school, and give them plenty of notice as to where their six-week placement school will be.

What qualifications do I get from a School Direct course?

PGCE, QTS and masters credits.

Do I have less days in University on the school-led PGCE?

Depending on the university partner, the number of university days are very similar. On the School Direct course you have one university day per week for the majority of the year. On the university-led course you have these days in blocks at the start and the middle of the course.

Do I have more days in school on the school-led PGCE?

The School Direct course runs for a full academic year, and you spend four or five days in school each week, so you do gather much more school experience on this route.

What kind of support do I get when training through the Association?

You have an in-school mentor for an designated hour per week, as well as an in-school ITT lead.

You will also have a university mentor who will visit you during the course and, if you are in a  secondary environment, you will also have a subject lead.

On top of this, you will be allocated a wellbeing buddy as well as teaching and learning support staff members from Diverse Association for Professional Learning, who have the capacity to come and see you in school on the same or next day if you need them.

Do you get a salary on a School Direct course?

While there is no salary on the School Direct course, there are student loans available that can cover the course fee and some living costs, and some subjects receive a bursary. It is worth doing a bit of research as you can also apply for reduced council tax as a student and receive maintenance grants for child care if you are eligible.

Can I apply without all the entry requirements?

Yes, you can apply without your degree as long as you are in your final year.

You can also apply without the correct GCSEs, as long as you pass an equivalency test before your start date. Please email for information on GCSE equivalencies.

Can I apply without school experience?

Yes you can, but other candidates may have gained school experience prior to application, giving them an advantage.

Whilst you will gain plenty of school experience on the course, and you can do days in your chosen school before you start, it may be worth looking into our school experience days to see what experience we can offer you before you apply.

Are many trainees career-changers?

Our trainees vary in age, experience and are from a range of backgrounds. Many of them join us for a change in career, and bring with them a wealth of transferable skills and experience.

It does not matter where your starting point may be, we have the mentoring support to give you what you require to be successful as a teacher.

We work in partnership with T2T who support career changes into teaching, and we recommend this programme to all our career-changers, as it gives an additional layer of support if you feel you need it.

How can I find out more?

If you would like to talk to us about School Direct or any of our services, please email us. We answer all emails and there is no question too big or too small. We look forward to hearing from you and helping you to plan your future career in teaching.