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Programme overview

Assessment only programme overview

The Assessment Only (AO) programme provides a pathway for experienced unqualified teachers with a degree to achieve Qualified Teacher Status (QTS). The Assessment Only route allows you to demonstrate that you already meet all of the standards for QTS, without the need for any further training. If you do not meet the entry requirements for the Assessment Only route, please consider one of our primary or secondary teacher training courses instead. The Tommy Flowers SCITT is an accredited and approved Assessment Only provider. We offer Assessment Only accreditation for age ranges: 3-7, 5-11, 7-14 ,11-16 and 14-19. 

Overseas teaching qualification

The UK’s Department for Education (DfE) is creating a fairer process for awarding qualified teacher status (QTS) to teachers from overseas. A new service called “apply for qualified teacher status in England” will assess the qualifications and experience of overseas teachers and eventually be open to qualified teachers from all countries outside the UK.

Currently, applicants with a teaching qualification from many countries and regions can apply to the TRA for QTS. By the end of 2023, it is expected that teachers from every country in the world will be able to apply for QTS through the Teaching Regulation Agency (TRA) using the new service.

Individuals not eligible to use the new service, may be able to:

More information can be found on the government website.

The Process

The Process

The Assessment Only programme is typically a 12-week assessment.


The applicant will complete a pre-application checklist with the Professional Tutor in their employing school in order to verify that they meet the necessary entry requirements. Once all entry criteria have been met, the applicant will request an application form. Upon receipt of the application and the service level agreement form a compliance check will be carried out. A handbook for the Assessment Only programme will be issued.


A Partnership Manager from the Tommy Flowers SCITT will arrange a visit to observe the applicant teach and to conduct an interview to assess their readiness for the 12 week assessment period. The applicant will be required to complete a subject knowledge audit and provide evidence towards meeting the Teachers’ Standards. Where necessary, an action plan will be put in place before the 12 week assessment process can be started.


The applicant will have weekly mentor meetings and observations with their School Mentor and carry out two assessment points. The Partnership Manager will review progress midway through the 12 weeks and visit for a final assessment in the last week, which will include an observation, interview and presentation of a portfolio of evidence.


The cost of the Assessment Only Programme is £2500. There is no funding available for this route. All costs must be met by the applicant and/or the employing school.


For the pre-application checklist and further guidance please contact [email protected].

Entry requirements

Entry requirements

All applicants for the Tommy Flowers SCITT Assessment Only programme must meet the following entry requirements before applying to the Tommy Flowers SCITT.

  • A British Bachelors Honours Degree or equivalent qualification. 
  • GCSEs or equivalent in English (Language or Literature), Mathematics (and for Primary applicants, a Science subject) at Grade C or above (Grade 4 or above from 2017). Please note that Level 1/2 functional skills are not equivalent to GCSE. For a list of accepted qualifications, please click here. We also accept equivalency tests from Equivalency Testing or A Star Equivalency. Please contact us if you are unsure if your qualifications are equivalent or to discuss your options.
  • Pass the Vretta Maths Audit
  • Employment as an unqualified teacher in at least two settings prior to application. Your role as an unqualified teacher will have involved planning, teaching and assessing whole classes in both schools, with a minimum of 20 days in the second school. One setting must be a mainstream state school in the UK.
  • A minimum of two years’ teaching experience as an unqualified teacher across the age ranges within the chosen age phase.
  • Current employment at a school willing to support you through this programme. You will need to have an enhanced DBS in place with the school in which you will be assessed.
  • Applicants must prove, through the interview process, both their suitability to teach and their ability to meet the standards for QTS without the need for any further training.

The UK National Information Centre for the recognition and evaluation of international qualifications and skills (UK ENIC) can provide advice on the equivalence of overseas qualifications. Click here for more information.