01756 707628 Email us

Respond • Inspire • Transform

Respond • Inspire • Transform

View navigation


Frequently asked Questions

What is a SCITT programme?

On School Centred Initial Teacher Training programmes students spend a minimum of 120 days in school as they work towards their Qualified Teacher Status (QTS).  The programmes are run by schools or groups of schools, many of whom work in close partnership with Universities enabling trainee teachers to gain a PGCE alongside working towards their QTS.  They provide practical hands-on teacher training programmes, taught by experienced, practising teachers and are often tailored towards teaching in the local area.

Is it possible to go into teaching if your degree isn’t in a national Curriculum subject?

You are required to have a good knowledge of your subject, normally to degree level; many teacher training providers expect at least half of your degree to be in your chosen subject, however some will also look at your A level subjects particularly if you wish to teach a shortage subject (for example an Economics degree and A*/A/B grade Maths A level wanting to teach Maths).

For primary teaching, you normally teach across the whole national curriculum; you should show a good understanding of national curriculum subjects, even if you may not have studied some of them beyond GCSE, and even if your degree is not in a national curriculum subject. Increasingly, primary teachers will have subject specialisms such as science or languages.

How do I get school experience and why is it necessary?

Some school experience is a pre-requisite of an application to the Northern Lights SCITT programme.  This will strengthen your application and provide you with an invaluable insight into what teaching is really like and the role and responsibilities of a classroom teacher.

Contact schools who know you or local schools asking who the appropriate contact is.  Be flexible.  Schools are busy places and so might not always offer you exactly what you requested.  Volunteering is a great option if your schedule permits.

Schools may require a DBS check as a matter of policy and you will need this as a trainee teacher.  It would be wise to obtain this as soon as possible as they can take weeks to complete.

Who should I choose as a referee?

If you are still at University or you got your degree in the past 5 years, one reference must be from someone who can comment on your academic ability and potential.  The other reference can be either from work or from someone who is able to comment on your character and potential as a teacher.

How do I request references?

You request them in Apply as part of your application. There is more information on the UCAS website.  You should however approach your referees in advance to avoid delays in processing your application.

How are NLSCITT trainees selected?

Applications are considered by the SCITT Director and the appropriate subject specialist.  

Shortlisted candidates are invited to interview in one our partner schools.  The half day schedule will give you the opportunity to see the school and meet staff.  We will explore your commitment to teaching as a career, your subject knowledge and your interpersonal skills through a range of activities including:

  • a classroom activity
  • a written test
  • a formal interview including a short presentation to the panel 

We give verbal feedback and update Apply.

View accreditations