Teaching Assistant to Teacher

Teaching Assistant to Teacher

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At this time of the year we are always looking at whether we are satisfied with our lives and what we can do during the upcoming year to improve things for ourselves and our families. It is a great opportunity to evaluate job satisfaction, and possibly think about taking that step to begin to work towards changing your career, particularly if you feel held back by personal circumstances or a lack of qualifications.

Female teacher with a female student

Our learners often get in touch to celebrate their success with us and to show their appreciation for us supporting them through the process, and it is because of this we are able to share with you some of their success stories.

Judith’s journey into teaching

In 2013 Judith became a learner with NCC Home Learning and embarked upon a Level 3 Supporting Teaching and Learning Certificate which she was able to complete within 8 months.

NCC learner describes her journey into teaching

“Years ago when I started working as a teaching assistant I was just taken on at my local school on a part-time basis because my children went there. I love working with children, and I think I am good at what I do, I have made a difference in terms of innovation in our school. After working here for 7 years I was invited to go for my Supporting Teaching and Learning Certificate as part of my PDP.

Initially, I wasn’t sure that I could go back to learning, particularly as I had a busy home life with 4 kids to raise as a single mum, but I gave it a go. I managed to pass the course quite easily and after a year I asked the Headteacher if I could take on the Higher Level Teaching Assistant certificate again for PDP, funding was found to support this and I was a HLTA for 6 years. I did both my courses through NCC because our bursar had previous experience dealing with them, and she knew that they were a reputable company. I have to say that with both courses I was taken care of really well and my tutor support was excellent. When I was doing my HLTA, I did have a second tutor because of maternity leave, but the transition did not affect me. After being a HLTA for 5 years, my Headteacher suggested me doing a PGCE. I already had a BA (Hons) Applied Art, and my Headteacher informed me that I could do the PGCE course as an apprenticeship and obtain my QTS upon completion.

After a very tough year and a half in terms of both the demands of the PGCE, but also personal demands because my mum passed away, I did actually achieve a job as a qualified teacher obviously at the same school that have supported me through the process. My mum would be so proud of my achievement.

Thank you to NCC, because without the courses that I did which evidenced my knowledge and ability, I never would have progressed to where I am now. I never imagined when I left school that I would become a teacher, but I love the work I do and the difference I make in my children’s lives. Without online learning to enable me to study around my work, I could never have afforded financially to get to where I am now.”

Teaching assistant courses offered by NCC

NCC offers a range of qualifications designed to support the professional growth of teaching assistants. As pioneers of the Higher Level Teaching Assistant (HLTA) qualification, we have been at the forefront of empowering teaching assistants to advance in their careers.

For individuals entering the field, our Supporting Teaching and Learning in Schools (STALIS) suite includes a foundational knowledge-based qualification, which is the Supporting Teaching and Learning in Schools Award Level 3 RQF. This allows those who may not have immediate access to a school placement to obtain a formal qualification, enhancing their prospects of securing a teaching assistant role. Upon completion, learners can seamlessly progress to the Level 3 STALIS Certificate at a reduced cost, building on the modules they have already completed. Further advancement is facilitated through the Specialist Support for Teaching and Learning in Schools Level 3 Diploma RQF, with the opportunity to leverage completed certificate units to streamline the progression process.

Ready to start? Enroll in one of our Teaching Assistant online courses now.

STALIS suite of qualifications showing units across each one

Experienced teaching assistants seeking to enhance their qualifications and earning potential can aspire to become Higher Level Teaching Assistants. NCC provides a tiered suite of qualifications to support this journey. For instance, a teaching assistant aspiring to become an TQUK Higher Level Teaching Assistant (HLTA) Level 4 Award independently, tailoring their pace to accommodate work commitments. This award serves as evidence of the knowledge required for an HLTA role, potentially opening doors for career progression within the same school or elsewhere. It’s important to note that achieving HLTA status is typically determined by the school, and additional requirements may be required beyond the Award to secure this status.

This year, NCC has expanded its Higher Level Teaching Assistant suite by introducing an Ofqual-regulated TQUK Higher Level Teaching Assistant (HLTA) Level 4 Diploma. This diploma offers a higher level of qualification beyond the Higher Level Teaching Assistant Certificate – HLTA Level 4 RQF, allowing individuals to further extend their professional development. Similar to our approach in Supporting Teaching and Learning in Schools, learners can leverage previously completed units from the Certificate qualification, saving both time and costs on their journey toward achieving the Diploma.

HLTA suite of qualifications showing units for each one

NCC is happy to provide further information or respond to any questions regarding these courses, or any of our courses on our website. Simply email [email protected] to communicate with one of our dedicated sales team, who will be happy to clarify anything that is unclear after reading the course details on our website.


Can you become a teacher without going to university?

Numerous online courses offer pathways to becoming a teacher; nevertheless, it’s important to note that these courses typically demand a certain level of education and might not confer Qualified Teacher Status (QTS), a prerequisite for teaching in state schools in the UK.

Can you become a qualified teacher without a degree?

Achieving the status of a qualified teacher without a traditional degree is possible, albeit an uncommon route. Some independent schools, private institutions, or academies may recruit teachers without degrees, but these positions can be competitive and may limit career progression. For service members leaving the military without an undergraduate degree, the Troops to Teachers program provides an alternative option.

Can you become a primary school teacher without a degree in the UK?

To become a primary school teacher in the UK without a degree, you would need to consider alternative routes to teacher training, such as School Direct or Teach First. These pathways require you to have some education and relevant experience working with children.

Nick Cooper
Nick is NCC's resident blog author and covers a range of subjects, including teaching and health & social care. NCC is an international learning provider with over 20 years’ experience offering learning solutions. To date, NCC has engaged with over 20,000 employers, and delivered quality training to over half a million learners.
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