Qualifications for practitioners

This page covers:

  • Qualifications for practitioners in the FE, skills and training sector

  • Current qualifications

  • Support for the qualifications

  • Qualification content downloads - for teachers of the qualifications


Qualifications for practitioners in the further education (FE), skills and training sector

  • It is up to employers to decide the teaching qualifications that they require their staff to hold (in England). However, some UK nations and international countries do have formal requirements for their teachers to hold a particular teaching qualification at a certain level. If you work outside of England, you might like to find out what the requirements are, perhaps by contacting your professional association or council.

  • There are currently two routes to gain recognition as a professional teacher in the Further Education and Skills sector (at level 5 or above in England). One is to obtain the qualification known as The Diploma in Teaching (replacement for DET, also known as CertEd/PGCE), and the other is through a Learning and Skills Teacher apprenticeship programme (level 5 equivalent). However, it is not currently mandatory to hold a teaching qualification, but you should have experience/qualifications in the subject you wish to teach. The requirements are different for each subject which you will need to check with your awarding organisation.

  • Once you are qualified at level 5 or above, you can apply to work towards QTLS status.

  • If you assess and/or quality assure an accredited qualification, there might be requirements as to what qualifications and/or experience you should have. This is usually stated in the awarding organisation's (AO) qualification specification, which you should be able to access via their website, providing you know who your AO is. If you don't know, the centre you work for will be able to tell you. The requirements are different for each subject.

  • If you are hoping to take one of the qualifications listed below, you will need to register with a centre. Always check online reviews of centres or obtain recommendations from others, don't just go on price. You could ask in my LinkedIn group for centres which people recommend and check out these tips to find a legitimate provider.

  • If you need to upgrade from an older version of a qualification which you have achieved, click here for details of how to do this.

  • If you teach and/or assess the qualifications listed on this page, support materials are available here. If you wish to become a centre to deliver them, click here.

Current qualifications:

The following are the current qualifications for those in the FE, skills and training sector. 

Just click a link below to find out more, and to download 'guidance for completing the units'.

* These units form part of the Training, Assessment and Quality Assurance qualifications known as TAQA.

You can find out the differences between the AET and PTLLS, the CET and CTLLS, and the DET and DTLLS by clicking here. PTLLS, CTLLS and DTLLS were the previous versions of the AET/CET and DET.

The latest guidance (Jan 2023) from the ETF regarding the AET/CET/DET can be found here.


***** News update *****


The Diploma in Teaching replaces the Diploma in Education and Training from 01.09.24. 


text book is available from Ann Gravells and Gavin Lumsden.


Support for the qualifications

If you teach and/or assess the qualifications, support materials are available here.


Qualification content downloads - for teachers of the qualifications

IMPORTANT NOTE: The guidance in the following documents has been updated, but the unit content should remain the same. Please check all details with your awarding organisation if you are using the content to deliver a course. If you are working towards one of the qualifications, you might find the content confusing as it's aimed at the teachers.

You can see the latest guidance from ETF here (January 2023), however, the guidance does not include the qualification content, which is why you can download it here.

Information regarding the content of the Diploma in Teaching can be obtained via your awarding organisation (they all differ).