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Qualifications for teaching English (literacy and ESOL) and mathematics (numeracy) in the FE sector in England

Following the LSIS review in 2012-2013, a comprehensive suite of guidance documents has been developed to support the introduction of the new  teaching qualifications.

Guidance for employers, practitioners and providers of initial teacher education

A range of materials have been developed to introduce the new qualifications to the sector:

Technical guidance for awarding organisations and higher education institutions

The following technical guidance has been developed for new specialist teaching qualifications to support awarding organisations and higher education providers developing qualifications to be regulated by Ofqual or validated by their own institutions:

The new qualifications will be introduced during 2013. Awarding organisations and higher education providers will notify their centres to confirm when they will begin to offer the new qualifications.

Copies of the technical guidance for predecessor qualifications is available upon request by emailing

Entry requirements for literacy, numeracy and ESOL teacher training programmes

In addition to the usual entry requirements for initial teaching courses, trainee teachers for literacy, numeracy and ESOL must evidence that they have personal skills in English or mathematics at level 3. The skills they need to evidence were updated in February 2010. For more information, read the Criteria for entry to mathematics (numeracy) and English (literacy and ESOL) teacher training in the lifelong learning sector.

New qualifications that cover these entry criteria have been developed in 2011. For more information, refer to the qualification guidance for Level 3 Award in English for Literacy and Language Teaching (QCF) ; Level 3 Award in Mathematics for Numeracy Teaching (QCF).

Applications of the Professional Standards for teachers of English (literacy and ESOL) and teachers of Mathematics (numeracy)

The qualifications are underpinned by applications of the professional standards. These documents detail the knowledge skills and understanding expected of all teachers of those subjects. Awarding organisations and their centres use these documents to inform the content of their programmes:

The literacy, numeracy and ESOL teaching workforce

LLUK surveyed the workforce in 2009. The report, Teachers of adult literacy, numeracy and ESOL: progress towards a qualified workforce, includes information about its size, characteristics and qualifications held, as well issues around supply of training.