Initial Teacher Training Opportunities in International Schools

COBIS is encouraging high-quality British International Schools to support the development and supply of teachers by engaging with Initial Teacher Training (ITT) routes in an international context. As part of the recent COBIS Teacher Supply Research, responding schools indicated that ITT programmes for local staff and flexible conversion routes to QTS/PGCE would play a key role in boosting teacher supply and retention. COBIS proposed three recommendations as part of that research to support Teacher Supply, both domestically and internationally, one of which was to increase international training opportunities including recruitment overseas into ITT.

In response, COBIS is now signposting high-quality Initial Teacher Training (ITT) opportunities to international schools, with preferential rates for COBIS Members.

When registering, please indicate that your school is a COBIS Member to access preferential rates.

Tes Institute’s Straight to Teaching, Assessment Only QTS and iPGCE in association with COBIS

We are pleased to announce that COBIS and Tes Institute have joined forces to help promote and deliver solutions to support schools with the supply and retention of teachers, with the launch of a new affiliate teacher training scheme for international schools.

Tes Institute’s Straight to Teaching, Assessment Only QTS and iPGCE in association with COBIS

COBIS members will now be able to access Tes Institute’s personalised and flexible QTS preparation programme Straight to Teaching, as well as an Assessment Only route to QTS and iPGCE at a discounted affiliate rate; a saving of up to £375 on the cost of Straight to Teaching or £175 for iPGCE. To access the discounted rate, use code COBIS5 when booking.

Tes Institute is the fully-accredited teacher training and development arm of Tes, and has supported around 4,000 teachers on routes to QTS in the UK and globally, combining in-person, online and school-based learning for partner schools.

For further information and current course fees for Tes Institute’s Straight to Teaching and Assessment Only routes to QTS, and iPGCE – in association with COBIS – please click here.

University of Buckingham's Preliminary PGCE, International PGCE, Assessment Only QTS and MA in Education in association with COBIS

The School of Education at the University of Buckingham has become one of the leading and largest providers of training for teachers and school leaders. The school offers the full continuum of training for staff and is delighted to be able to offer COBIS members discounted rates for the Preliminary PGCE, International PGCE, Assessment Only Route to QTS and MA in Education.


To receive the discounted rate, simply select COBIS from the drop down box on the relevant online application form at

University of Sunderland's PGCE Education IDL, PGCE Early Years Teaching IDL and Assessment Only QTS in association with COBIS

Initial Teacher Education at the University of Sunderland 

Discounted rates available for COBIS Schools using the links below.

The ‘life changing’ University of Sunderland has 20,000 students based in campuses in Sunderland, London and Hong Kong and at its global partnerships with learning institutions in 15 countries. We are proud of our long-established commitment to widening participation, our world-leading research, public and private sector collaborations and our track-record for providing quality student experiences resulting in graduates who are the tomorrow-makers of our societies and economies. We are research active, with ten areas of 'world leading’ research - real-world research. Our graduates are sought-after, with 94.2% of our UK undergraduates and 95.8% of our UK postgraduates in employment or in further education within 6 months of graduating. 

PGCE Education IDL  

Apply Here to access COBIS discount

We have over 100 years’ experience of training teachers and are one of the largest providers of Initial teacher training in the UK in addition to 700 students worldwide.  The PGCE Independent Distance Learning (IDL) Education programme is a world leading and internationally recognised teaching qualification which has been running since 2001. It has consistently attracted large cohorts in mainland China and Hong Kong, the United Arab Emirates, Europe, Asia and Africa.  The programme blends applied teaching theory and practice in three taught modules and a teaching practice module. The PGCE has been developed to enable it to be delivered to primary, secondary and post-16 teachers and to any subject specialism. It is a 36-week full-time course, completed in one academic year. The programme blends applied teaching theory and practice in three taught modules and one extended assessed teaching practice. The assessed teaching practice is a unique feature of our provision and one which makes it extremely popular with trainee teachers and employers. The PGCE has been developed to enable it to be delivered to primary, secondary and post-16 teachers and to any subject specialism.  On the PGCE IDL, two of the modules are research-based and at Masters level, which prepares for further postgraduate study which can be undertaken with us in IDL mode. Many graduates are undertaking this as a further career-enhancing opportunity.

Please contact the programme leader, Ian Elliott, for further details on - To apply with the COBIS discount, please click here.

PGCE Early Years Teaching IDL

Apply Here to access the COBIS discount

The Postgraduate Certificate in Early Years Teaching programme is ideal for people living outside of the UK who already work with children aged 0-5.  This course is aimed at professionals/practitioners who will engage in an intensive one year blended learning programme to acquire knowledge, understanding and skills with regard to working with children and families in the International Early Years’ context. Our course is unique and distinctive in that it offers a highly flexible mode of learning with course delivery and assessment entirely via distance using our university VLE (virtual learning environment), without ever having to come to the UK.  This programme has four modules of applied theory (40 credits at undergraduate level and 60 credits at Masters level) which are spread out over the academic year. The four modules of applied theory allow for the examination of the context of young children’s learning and development. Exploration of how to assess development and learning, how to construct a curriculum and how to lead Early Years provision are integral to the programme.  Additionally, and concurrently, two assessed teaching practices in an Early Years setting of your choice will be undertaken – either at your own workplace or with an employer who is willing to provide you with a placement and mentor.

Please contact the programme leader, Alison Griffiths, for further details on - To apply with the COBIS discount, please click here.

The Assessment Only Route to QTS

The Assessment Only Route to QTS (AOR) is for experienced teachers, who have been teaching whole classes for a minimum of two years. Having delivered this route in the UK for several years, the University is conducting increasing numbers of assessments overseas in British International Schools, as obtaining QTS is seen as desirable.  Applicants will have taught in at least two schools, normally for at least two years and across one of the following age ranges: 3-11 (primary), 7-14 (middle) or 11-19 (secondary).  The AOR allows candidates to demonstrate that they already meet all of the Teachers' Standards for QTS.

The assessment period is a maximum of 12 weeks which commences after registration with Department for Education, the Teaching Regulation Agency (TRA). If a candidate meets the eligibility criteria for AOR the University will ask for a detailed presentation of preliminary evidence at interview – then for the final recommendation for QTS we will re-assess evidence and assess teaching – normally at the school where the candidate is currently working.

Typical applications to this route include people who have taught for more than two years in the independent sector or overseas. The AOR may be possible to undertake while teaching overseas, normally in a British International School.

Upon award of QTS, the next step is to undertake a year as a newly qualified teacher (NQT). This includes a personalised programme of professional support and further assessment against the core professional standards for teachers normally organised by your employing school or local authority.  There is no formal teaching on Assessment Only Route to QTS.

Please contact the programme leader, Dianne Fleetham, for further details on

Manchester Metropolitan University's International Assessment Only QTS in association with COBIS

Manchester Metropolitan University, Faculty of Education

About the Faculty

The Faculty of Education has been educating teachers, practitioners and professionals for over 100 years.

Each year, nearly 3,000 students study full-time with us on over 60 courses including Primary and Secondary Teacher Education, Early Years and Childhood Studies, Education Studies and Foundation Studies. A further 1,100 study part-time at Master’s or PhD level, making us the largest provider of postgraduate taught courses outside London.

We work in close partnership with over 1,500 schools and colleges, including schools overseas, to provide our students with diverse placement and learning opportunities.

We are also home to leading researchers.

The International Assessment Only Route to QTS

We can assess experienced teachers with a degree who are working outside the UK and who wish to gain Qualified Teacher Status (QTS). The International Assessment Only Route allows you to demonstrate that you already meet all of the UK Government’s Teachers’ Standards for QTS and can be completed in various settings. Progress throughout the ‘assessed phase’ is monitored and assessed virtually by a Manchester Met tutor. The final assessment takes place in person, overseas in your school setting. To find out more about the Route, if you are eligible and how to apply,  please go to the ‘International Assessment Only Route’ section of our webpage at:  

Educational Success Partners (ESP)'s Assessment Only Route to QTS in association with COBIS

COBIS member schools are able to access ESP's Assessment Only (AO) Route to QTS. The team at ESP offer training and consultancy support and have over 10 years’ experience of supporting British international schools.


The ESP Assessment Only (AO) Route enables experienced teachers who hold a degree to demonstrate that they already meet all of the DfE Teachers' Standards, resulting in the award of Qualified Teacher Status (QTS) without the need for any further training in the UK.  It can then be followed by fast-track NQT Induction if you are a BSO accredited school.


In order to qualify, teachers are expected to have experience of teaching across the age range for which they are applying to be assessed. Primary candidates will be expected to teach the full range of National Curriculum subjects and all candidates should have taught a range of abilities. Supporting schools should be BSO accredited or able to demonstrate that the school delivers the UK National Curriculum and is a member of an association such as COBIS, FOBISIA, or BSME.


Please email for the latest application windows, more information or to access the programme.