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The Application Process

We would love you to choose Durham as the place to begin your journey into the teaching profession.

We offer a number of routes into teaching and it is really important that you understand the differences between them and choose the best option for you.

At Durham, a core PGCE and School Direct PGCE have the same structure, including academic support, university input, enrichment opportunities, number of days in school, QTS recommendation and PGCE qualification (90 credits). However, this is not the case with all providers. 

Applying for our teacher training programmes

If you would like to apply to any of our teacher training programmes, you need to apply via DFE Apply

We are an ethical provider and that we only take the number of trainees that we are confident can be placed in our partnership schools. Once we have reached this number the portal will close. This means you need to apply as early as possible in the cycle to prevent you missing out.

What happens next?

Your application will be assessed against our entry criteria and if you are eligible, you will be invited to interview.

Your interview performance, as well as your application form and your referee statements provides you with the opportunity to demonstrate to us that you not only possess the potential to become an excellent trainee teacher, but also that you will benefit from the Durham University Teacher Education Programmes in particular.

Overseas candidates

The Department of Education have introduced an overseas qualification service, available through the Get into Teaching Line.

The service includes:

  • An initial verbal check to advise candidates on what their qualifications are equivalent to (guidance only).
  • A written NARIC statement of comparability, paid for on behalf of the candidate (if required) and only available once a candidate has applied to ITT.
  • The verbal check is a candidate-based advice service; the aim is to provide guidance on a candidate‚Äôs eligibility prior to applying. 
  • Final decisions on candidate eligibility still lie with providers prior to commencement of ITT

Candidates should call the Get into Teaching Line on 0800 389 2500.

 Interview Process

Your interview performance, as well as your application form and your referee statements provides you with the opportunity to demonstrate to us that you not only possess the potential to become an excellent trainee teacher, but also that you will benefit from the Durham University Teacher Education Programmes in particular.


Invitation to Interview

You will receive an Invitation to interview via DFE Apply with a morning or afternoon session. You will then receive an email containing further information about the specifics of the interview process. At present, interviews are being conducted via Teams or Zoom. You do not need to have Zoom/Teams installed on your machine prior to this however, it is advisable to click on the link 5 minutes before the start of your interview time to allow for it to load.


You will be asked to send a copy of your photo ID to prior to the day of your interview. This allows the interviewer to verify your identity. If this is not received, unfortunately your interview will not be able to go ahead. If you anticipate any difficulties with providing this ID please get in touch on the email address above as soon as possible.

You will also need to provide copies of your Degree certificate if you already have a degree, your GCSE certificates for Maths, English Language and if you are a Primary applicant, your GCSE Science certificate (combined Science or Biology, Chemistry or Physics).

You will be asked to provide a contact telephone number for the interviewers. This will only be used in the event of technical difficulties.


Welcome Presentation

Please ensure you have watched the relevant presentation prior to your interview (found at the bottom of this section)


Individual Interview

The interview will usually be conducted by two members of the Durham University Partnership.

The interview will explore the interviewee's experiences and provide them the best opportunity to demonstrate their knowledge, understanding and desire to become an Early Career Teacher.


Candidate Presentation

Interviewees are requested to prepare, in advance, a short talk-:

  • What subject (aspect of your subject for secondary) are you looking forward to teaching and why?  

Candidates will be required to demonstrate their ability to communicate effectively and present with enthusiasm and conviction to engage the audience. A strict time limit of 5 minutes for the presentation will be imposed by the interviewers and the interview itself shall be 45 minutes. Note: Interviewees are allowed to use flash cards or bring notes to use as memory aids.


Frequently Asked Questions:

Q: Can I use notes for the presentation?

A: Yes, interviewees may use notes or flash cards to help them during their presentation.

Q: What should I wear on the day?

A: We would encourage you to dress smartly but comfortably, something which would be suitable for working in a classroom/school.

Q: What should I do if I have any special requirements?

A: If you have any special requirements that need to be taken into consideration on the day of your interview, please contact as soon as you receive the invitation to attend.

Post Interview

You will receive notification of a decision shortly after your attendance at a selection day if you are successful at this stage...

If you are successful at interview we will update DFE Apply offering you a conditional place on the programme.  If you choose to accept the offer of a place then we will write to you confirming the offer and outlining any conditions to be met.

If you are unsuccessful at this stage, you will be provided with brief feedback from the interview which may help you moving forward. Being unsuccessful in your first interview will not affect any future applications with us.