The General Teaching Council for Scotland

GTCS to publish new Entry Memorandum

Following a national consultation, the General Teaching Council for Scotland (GTCS) will publish a revised Memorandum on Entry Requirements for Initial Teacher Education programmes in Scotland.

11 June 2019

The Memorandum sets out the minimum qualifications and expectations required for students’ entry into initial teacher education (ITE) in Scotland.

The revised Memorandum will be used by admissions teams within universities when assessing applications to ITE programmes beginning in the academic year 2020. It will be published on 3 September 2019 when the UCAS admissions process opens.

GTCS Chief Executive and Registrar, Ken Muir, said:

“Our information gathering exercise which informed the review of the Entry Memorandum involved a working group, a literature review, a comparative study of the entry requirements of other teaching councils and a national consultation. It was found that Scotland has high and rigorous entry requirements and that there is a desire to maintain this.

"While there was no appetite for a lowering of entry requirements or for entry requirements to be significantly raised, it was important that GTCS carried out this review to ensure that the Memorandum remains relevant and fit for purpose.”

The key change to the Memorandum is that it now reflects the wider array of qualifications that students can have when applying to enter an ITE programme. The changes offer further flexibility in recruitment while ensuring that the high standards expected for entry to the teaching profession are maintained.

Applicants for ITE programmes in both primary and secondary education will continue to require, amongst other qualifications, skills, experiences and attributes:

  • a National Qualification in English at SCQF Level 6 (for example Higher Grade) or an accepted equivalent and
  • a National Qualification in Mathematics at SCQF Level 5 (for example National 5) or an accepted equivalent

For entry to four-year undergraduate degree programmes in primary education, applicants must now have four rather than three National Qualifications at SCQF Level 6 (one of which must be English).

Specific requirements for some secondary subjects have been updated to reflect changes in the qualifications offered in different subject areas and the skills expected of teachers.

The new Memorandum will come into force from 3 September 2019, at which time it will be made publicly available on the GTCS website at gtcs.org.uk

Notes to Editors

For more information please contact Evelyn Wilkins on 0131 314 6077 or evelyn.wilkins@gtcs.org.uk