Category Archives: Support

Support for your application and Skills Tests

GCSEs – ‘Equivalency Tests’ and Level 2 Qualifications

GCSEs:

You’ll need your GCSEs (Grade C  or above/equivalent* – New GCSE Grade 4 or above) in Maths & English [and a Science if you want to teach Primary], but make sure that you have them BEFORE you apply.

If you don’t have them yet, you can consider doing an ‘Equivalency Test’ before you apply for teacher training. A simple internet search will bring up a number of organisations who deliver Equivalency Tests.

 

Equivalency Tests:

Birmingham City University (BCU) have developed an online GCSE equivalence option which is open to trainees applying to any provider. They are offering all three GCSE equivalencies.

An applicant, who is holding an offer at an ITT provider, will pay a one-off admin fee of £25 – irrespective of the number of equivalencies needed.  They will then pay an additional fee of £75 for Maths, £75 for Science and £90 for English.

This will give access to four areas of learning, which are run as online study sessions and which the candidate must engage with before taking the test.  An applicant will have the opportunity for two tests – a first attempt and a resit.

All of the tests will be marked by experienced GCSE Examiners and subject leads to provide assurance in regards consistency.  The charges are designed to cover costs and support development only.

Full details of the service can be found here.

Equivalency Testing co are also now offering  an on-line facility.

Their contact email is: info@equivalencytesting.com

Alternatively, please enter an internet search for ‘Equivalency Testing‘  and select which organisation’s course you wish to apply to.

Once you have passed the test, we would accept this as an equivalence to the GCSE.

 

Level 2 Qualifications:

Please note that Level 2 Qualifications (e.g. GNVQs etc.) are NOT equivalent, as they do not have the ‘breadth or depth’ of a GCSE or a recognised equivalent.

If you do apply and only have Level 2 qualifications, your application will not be progressed further, so please look to take a GCSE resit, alternative qualification or an Equivalence Test before applying for a place on one of our ITT programmes.

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Fundamental English & Mathematics Criteria replacing Skills Tests

First the good news – the DfE announced in July 2019, that applicants for teacher training starting in Sep 2020 will no longer have to pass the two Professional Skills Tests. However,  all trainee teachers will now be required to demonstrate that they meet ‘Fundamental English & mathematics’ criteria.

ITT Providers will continue to ‘test’ applicants for their numeracy & literacy skills to determine that all teachers are able to demonstrate competence  in the following areas:

  • Speaking, listening and communicating are fundamental to a teacher’s role;
  • Teachers should use standard English grammar, clear pronunciation and vocabulary relevant to the situation to convey instructions, questions, information, concepts and ideas with clarity;
  • Teachers should read fluently and with good understanding;
  • Writing by teachers will be seen by colleagues, pupils and parents and, as such, it is important that a teacher’s writing reflects the high standards of accuracy their professional role demands;
  • They should write clearly, accurately, legibly and coherently using correct spelling and punctuation;
  • Teachers should use data and graphs to interpret information, identify patterns and trends and draw appropriate conclusions;
  • They need to interpret pupil data and understand statistics and graphs in the news, academic reports and relevant papers;
  • Teachers should be able to complete mathematical calculations fluently with whole numbers, fractions, decimals and percentages;
  • They should be able to solve mathematical problems using a variety of methods and approaches including: estimating and rounding, sense checking answers, breaking down problems into simpler steps and explaining and justifying answers using appropriate language.

Further official guidance can be found here

We’re really looking forward to deleting this post and never having to mention Skills Tests ever again!!

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Applying for Student Loans

All our tuition-fee paying courses (SCITT & School Direct*) require trainees to apply for fees from the Student Loans Company (SLC) / Student Finance England (SFE)

Please watch this 1 minute film which helps explain student finance and the application process or go to the Student Finance Zone or watch the ‘Getting Paid’ video on YouTube.

To apply for tuition-fees and see what other loans you may be eligible for, please go to the DfE’s Student Finance – Log-in

To register for a tuition-fee loan please go to: www.slc.co.uk and search for the ‘Doncaster ITT Partnership’ then you can select from one of two courses with SLC, either (for 2020-21):

  • ‘QTS ONLY’ (£7,950) or;
  • ‘QTS plus PGCE’  (£9,150) – (See below for details)*.

To apply you need to search for the ‘Doncaster ITT Partnership’ then it should give you the two Course options (above). Do NOT enter any other description (i.e. ‘Primary SCITT’, ‘Maths’ etc.) as these will NOT allow your application to be correctly processed. You do NOT need the UCAS course code to apply for a loan on SLC.

*NB – Please note that the ‘PGCE’ refers to the programme offered by University of Hull who provide this additional qualification to Doncaster ITT Partnership trainees – please do NOT apply for a tuition-fee with the University of Hull.

Good luck arranging your student loans!

*NB – School Direct (Salaried) trainees do not need to apply for tuition-fees

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Are you considering a ‘career change’?

The DfE advisory service is to encourage second year undergraduates and career changers who want to teach a ‘priority subject’, but are not ready to apply this recruitment year.

The DfE has recruited a number of specialist advisers who will provide a dedicated one-to-one support service, which aims to help candidates to chose the right teaching route, providing help and support with their ‘application journey’.

To access this service, please register with the Get into Teaching site

Good luck with your applications!

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*** Online Events ***

Online Events

Would you like to ask a panel of specialists the questions that matter to you in one of the Department for Education (DfE) ‘real-time’ Online Events ? Whether you want general guidance or advice tailored to your circumstances, these online teaching events offer a convenient way to discuss a range of topics related to teacher training.

Recently held events included a series focused on getting into teaching which are still available on the DfE archive, inc. events on:

 

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These archived events were interactive sessions that offered a convenient way to engage directly with a panel of specialist advisers across a range of topics, but you can see the questions which were asked and answered about what mattered to other potential trainee teachers.

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