The Government has expressed a clear commitment to offering incentives to attract more of the very best graduates into teaching.

Training bursaries

Bursaries are available for trainees on eligible postgraduate courses in England who are not employed as unqualified teachers on the School Direct salaried route. Bursary amounts will vary depending on teacher training subject and degree class or highest relevant academic qualification.

Teaching is a prime career choice for high-quality graduates, and we are looking for excellent graduates wanting to train to teach secondary subjects. To encourage the best people to enter the profession, larger financial incentives are offered to trainees with 2:1 and first class degrees.

The bursary scheme recognises exceptional achievement outside of degree results and allows flexibility in some cases. In exceptional circumstances trainees may receive a higher bursary than their degree class would otherwise allow. This allows the scheme to take account of, for example, trainees with a 2:2 and a PhD or proven exceptional subject knowledge gained from another career. More information is available in the bursary document about the consideration of exceptional achievements, which will be available to download from this page soon.

The table below summarises the standard financial incentives available in 2014/15:

Financial incentives for those who train in 2014/15

Training bursary 2014/151 ITT subject/phase
Physics, maths Computing Chemistry Languages4 Other priority secondary5 and primary Primary maths specialists6
Scholarship2 £25,000 £25,000 £25,000 - - -
Trainee with first £20,000 £20,000 £20,000 £20,000 £9,000 £11,000
2:1 £20,000 £20,000 £15,000 £15,000 £4,000 £11,000
2:2 £15,000 £15,000 £12,000 £12,000 £0 £6,000
Other3 £9,000 £0 £0 £0 £0 £0

1 School Direct trainees whose training is based in a school where more than 35% of pupils are eligible for free school meals will receive a 25% increase on the above bursaries/scholarships.

2 Trainee teachers in maths, physics, chemistry and computing with a 2:1 or first are able to apply for scholarships with the relevant subject association group. Applicants for the scholarships will be subject to a competitive process. Trainees who hold the scholarship will not also be eligible for the standard Department for Education (DfE) bursary. Trainees who are not awarded a scholarship will continue to be eligible for the standard bursaries in 2014/15.

3 Trainee teachers in maths and physics with a relevant degree and at least a B at A level in maths or physics (or equivalent) will be eligible for a bursary of £9,000. Trainees will not be entitled to this bursary if they are also entitled to a higher bursary based on degree class.

4 Bursaries are available to train to teach modern foreign languages, community languages and ancient languages including Latin and Ancient Greek.

Other priority secondary subjects are English, history, biology, geography, music, and design and technology.

Available to trainees with a B or better at maths A-level on primary maths specialist courses only. Those who do not have a B or higher at maths A-level, or those who train on general primary courses, will receive the normal primary bursary for their degree class.

If you're a candidate from the European Economic Area (EEA) you need to have a university degree or the English equivalent, and be a confident and competent English speaker. For more information about qualification comparisons and to help determine postgraduate bursary eligibility, you should consult your chosen training provider or equivalency table (PDF, 1MB). This is based on a grade comparison exercise carried out by UK NARIC of the majority of international awards that are considered comparable to British Bachelor (honours) degree standard.

Bursary payments are processed automatically for eligible candidates by their chosen teacher training provider. You will receive more information on the arrangements and how this is distributed prior to the start of your course.

For bursary awards up to £13,750:

  • Trainees will receive the bursary in equal monthly instalments for the duration of their course.
  • Trainees are advised to confirm the actual monthly amounts that will be paid with their ITT provider.

For bursary awards of £15,000 or over:

  • Trainees will continue to receive equal monthly instalments for the duration of their course, but this will be enhanced by larger payments in February and July, or in the final month of the trainee's course.
  • The trainee would need to be on the course at 1 January to receive the first enhanced payment in February, and would need to have completed the course to receive the second payment at the end of their programme.

The potential range of options now available to trainees for ITT makes it important that you are fully informed of the financial support you may be able to access to complete your training. When considering your training options, you may wish to ask your training provider about what bursaries, grants and support are available to you for the choice you are making. Information and advice can also be sought from the Student Loans Company or by contacting the Teaching Line on 0800 389 2500.

School Direct bursary top-up

School Direct trainees may be eligible for an additional payment worth 25 per cent of their standard bursary. To qualify for this payment, trainees will need to be based in a school where more than 35 per cent of pupils are eligible for free school meals.

The School Direct bursary top-up is only available in combination with a standard bursary and will be paid on top of the standard bursary amount the trainee is eligible for. Schools are not required to offer free school meals to participate in School Direct.

Pay and progression

Newly qualified teachers (NQTs) in England and Wales can expect a starting salary of at least £21,804 a year (or £27,270 for those working in inner London).

Teaching offers great career prospects and development opportunities. Find out more about teaching salary ranges