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By 2010, anyone in receipt of government funding for teaching will require a PTLLS certificate. PTLLS stands for "Preparing to Teach in the Lifelong Learning Sector". Essentially anyone who delivers learning to one or more individuals will be covered by this regulation, whether the teaching is delivered in a classroom or at business premises. It will cover full time teachers delivering lessons in a college and at the same time will cover trainers and assessors providing courses and underpinning knowledge for work and vocational qualifications. The intention with PTLLS is to have a "one size fits all" qualification which will give all qualified teachers a substantive qualification that allows them to pass the necessary threshold to teach.
The hope is that the all new PTLLS 6302 qualification will provide candidates with an opportunity to gain accreditation from a one-unit qualification that bestows upon them the necessary training to allow them to enter the teaching or training profession, gaining as they go a level 3 or 4 qualification and taking the first step towards the QTLS (Qualified Teacher Learning and Skills) qualification.
Understanding the necessity for a PTLLS qualification depends first of all on understanding the meaning of the phrase "lifelong learning". While there are certain levels of compulsory learning in the United Kingdom, and a child must stay in school or full-time education of some sort for the duration of their childhood, there is then another sector of education beyond this that is described as "post-compulsory" or "lifelong" learning. The skill set required for teaching the compulsory education sector is naturally very different from that which is required to teach non- or post-compulsory education.
Your own intentions in choosing teaching as a career are therefore fundamental to which qualification you should seek to achieve. If your hope is to teach school-age children in an everyday school setting, the PTLLS qualification is not immediately relevant for your purposes. It is more targeted towards people who wish to deliver vocational and/or specialised learning for the purposes of improving a learner's employability. Teacher training is an option taken on by many candidates directly after they themselves have gained a further education qualification such as a Bachelors' or Masters' degree in their sphere of speciality.
A PTLLS qualification is generally achieved at the end of 30 classroom and 30 non-classroom learning hours, and will if followed correctly teach the candidate to develop an awareness of their own professional role, the value systems underpinning that role and the legal requirements for carrying it out. As much as knowledge of the subject you are teaching, the profession requires you to have an appreciation of the principles of learning, teaching and assessment of the success of the learner. The PTLLS qualification will centre around delivering this appreciation and knowledge to a satisfactory level, enabling the candidate to have the required tools and skill set for delivering on every required front. Whether this leads then into a further teaching qualification or a job in the education sector is up to the candidate.
In line with the requirements for teachers in the Lifelong Learning sector, new qualifications were launched in September 2007. The minimum qualification now required if one wishes to teach in the post-compulsory education sector is a PTLLS (Preparing to Teach in the Lifelong Learning Sector) - which may or may not lead to a full QTLS qualification. The exact content of the course depends on where and from whom it is gained, but there are certain principles which are indispensable parts of the course wherever it is learned. The suitable candidates for a PTLLS course are anyone who would like to work in the lifelong learning sector and is new to teaching adults, and those who have been teaching for a short time and have no subject-specific training.
In order to efficiently deliver learning to adult or post-compulsory learners there are a number of aspects which a candidate must satisfy. Adult learning in general is substantially different from childhood learning - not least in the fact that adult learners in any class will generally have chosen to be there and will be learning the subject for their own reasons. Children, on the other hand, will be in a class because it is compulsory for them to be there and will require teaching in a different way. It is necessary for someone looking for a PTLLS qualification to appreciate these differences and to identify the learners with whom they will be dealing, so as to appreciate how best they can angle the teaching.
Another major part of teaching - at any level - is planning lessons. Knowing how to get the maximum delivery of learning in the allotted teaching time is something that plays a huge part in how good a teacher can be. Planning lessons does not come naturally, and it is important to take account of how a classroom period - be it an hour, a half-day, a full day or just a fraction of an hour - can be broken down to give the optimum time in each aspect of the class. Staying on that plan and keeping to the delivery of it, allowing enough time for transitions between different parts, is something that a teacher needs to know if they are to maintain fluent control of the class.
The PTLLS 6302 qualification formerly 7303 is designed to teach and demonstrate competency in the above elements and also in some other key areas such as teaching in a specialist area. Teaching being as varied a profession as it is, it is important to have this part of the job tied down in the qualifications process. It is also important to cover the issue of delivering inclusive lessons which keep a full class motivated. In any classroom you may have a spread of different abilities which stretches from the very able students who pick things up instantly, to those who struggle with the subject matter and may require a particular way of pitching the classes. In ensuring that the potential teacher has an appreciation of all these elements, there is a 30-minute micro-teaching session for each of the candidates during one of the final classes, to measure the effectiveness of their approach.
Gaining a PTLLS qualification is now not only a standard art of the process for anyone looking to teach at post-compulsory level, but a stipulated requirement, and any newly-qualifying teacher will be required to have this qualification should they wish to teach in the sector. Depending on the ability of the candidate and the quality of the job they are looking to get, there are Level 3 and Level 4 qualifications available. Our candidates have option to upgrade to Level 4 at an extra cost of £200.
Someone who is looking to gain a PTLLS qualification will be required to demonstrate a range of competencies which stretch from the fairly straightforward such as "Basic theory of education" and "Job roles and responsibilities" to more specific and involved modules such as keeping a reflective teaching journal and giving a "Micro teaching session". All of these elements will be assessed by an internal verifier who will judge to which level the candidate has satisfied each of them. In order to get on the course in the first place it will also be necessary to demonstrate a sufficient level of literacy and be qualified in the subject you wish to teach. It is unnecessary to have taught before. The idea of the assessment process is to decide whether or not you have the competency to teach.
In order for the assessment of the subject to be comprehensive, it is necessary to cover a wide range of assessment areas. Before commencing the course in earnest, candidates will need to go through an interview process and a numeracy and literacy assessment.
Much of the course is given to continuous assessment processes, allowing the candidate to monitor their progress and identify areas which will require improvement. In each section of the course, the candidate will need to carry out assignment work which they carry out outside the classroom. This entails three separate assignments. To show one's capability in each element of the course, there are various aspects in each module of the course that must be satisfied before they can be ticked off and signed off.
The Assessment process of a PTLLS candidate is as follows: One assignment measuring the candidate's ability to keep an ongoing review of the learning goals of their group of students, its effectiveness and an evaluation of the process used (this assignment is compiled over time); an assignment to develop a lesson plan detailing how the lesson is relevant to and meets the needs of its learners; and finally as part of one of the last classes of the course, a 30-minute mini-lesson which puts into practice the theories and findings of the candidate regarding how a class should be carried out and how the planning can be transferred into practice. This demonstrates an ability to keep to the tenets of learning in both ongoing and ad hoc situations.
The work of a teacher providing lifelong learning is in itself a learning process. Quite apart from being involved in education and therefore being in an environment geared towards learning, the process of becoming a teacher and that of adding strings to one's bow as a qualified teacher is something which necessitates an openness to learning. There are numerous teaching qualifications available even for those teachers who are already qualified. Adding further qualifications is by no means compulsory but, as in any profession, it will undoubtedly increase not only the range but the standard of positions for which you may apply.
As with many professions it is possible to learn on the job if you are a qualified teacher. Indeed it is considered preferable that you do, as it allows you to upskill and increase your professionalism as a teacher. One qualification that is recommended for PTLLS-qualified teachers is the Diploma in Teaching in the Lifelong Learning Sector. As the PTLLS name suggests, it is a qualification for those at the start of their planned career in teaching within that sector. The Diploma is a way of taking this further. To qualify as a DTLLS teacher it is, unlike with the PTLLS, necessary to have teaching experience, and indeed the assessment process necessitates the teacher to be observed at work 8 times for at least a total of 8 hours.
The DTLLS stresses the importance of theories and principles for planning and enabling learning in its first part, while in its second it concerns itself more with the matters of the teacher's own development in a personal and professional sense, and the design of a broad curriculum. Alternatively, a candidate may wish to either add to their PTLLS or pick, as an alternative to it, the Certificate for Teaching in the Lifelong Learning Sector. Although this certificate covers some of the same ground as the PTLLS, it adds to it as well and is broader in its scope. PTLLS in fact constitutes one of the modules in the CTLLS course, along with the subjects of Planning and Enabling Learning as covered in the DTLLS course, and the Principles and Practice of Assessment.
Any of these courses can be followed up by the highest teaching qualification, the ultimate aim of any teacher in training, the QTLS. QTLS stands for "Qualified Teacher Learning and Skills". A qualification gained over the course of two years, the QTLS is gained after a course focussed on theories of teaching and learning, involving observation and mentoring processes. The QTLS course is held over two years, with the first focusing heavily on methodology and the second being geared more towards becoming a more autonomous teacher and honing one's own style. Both elements are highly important for someone wishing to teach for a living.
On gaining a QTLS qualification, the successful candidate will be fully qualified to take up a full time teaching role within the Lifelong Learning Sector - whether as a teacher, a tutor or a trainer.
The teaching profession is one that has attracted people for quite some time, and one that is very widely respected. Anyone with an amount of knowledge to pass on and the desire to pass it on will look to a potential career in the teaching sector. Anyone who wishes to teach post-compulsory learners has the added advantage of knowing that their students are people who are firmly interested in the subject and wish to learn more about it - they are, after all, there through choice rather than obligation. A career in the lifelong learning sector can, therefore, be one of the most rewarding that you could choose from. The available courses for a potential teacher are many in number and various in quality. It is therefore important to know that you are getting the best advice and feedback - picking the right training service is vital.
There are many PTLLS courses currently available all over Britain, and these are administrated in places such as London, Leeds, Birmingham, Milton Keynes and Glasgow by the TTA for individuals who are looking to gain the necessary credentials to pursue a teaching qualification. Just as Get Licensed provide training to people looking to work in an all-important industry such as security, they will aim to give individuals their chance to work in a sector which is even more important in many ways. They should be a first port of call for you if you are looking to gain the required knowledge and methodology to provide others with the necessary tools to do a job in the future.
Whichever is the most convenient course location for you, it is worth making contact to find out when you can next get on a course and then begin or continue your training as a teacher. Teaching is without doubt one of the more difficult jobs you can do, but is equally as rewarding as it is difficult, and provides an individual with opportunities that no other job can offer. If you are going to learn how to teach, then you could surely not do any better than do it through an organisation that appreciates more than any other the importance of good teaching. They, like you, realize that without good teachers the learning experience is compromised. Consequently, they provide the opportunities for prospective teachers to learn about how to teach effectively.
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