The skills and experience you develop during your education degree prepare you for a range of careers working with children and young people

Job options

Jobs directly related to your degree include:

Jobs where your degree would be useful:

Remember that many employers accept applications from graduates with any degree subject, so don't restrict your thinking to the jobs listed here.

Work experience

If you want to do a PGCE or equivalent postgraduate qualification, you will need to have experience of working with children, preferably in a school environment. This will show that you understand the job role and are committed to a teaching career. Contact schools directly to ask for work experience or to observe classes or shadow teachers. Find out more about volunteering in schools. Volunteering to help out at a local education, sports, community or youth centre is also a good way to gain some experience around educational issues.

If you want to move away from a career in education, think about what areas of work interest you and look out for work placements and voluntary opportunities advertised via your university career service, on company websites and through the specialist press. Use these opportunities to discover whether you suit the work and to build up a network of contacts. Work shadowing is another useful way of finding out about a particular career.

Search for placements and find out more about work experience and internships.

Typical employers

If you're working in a state-maintained school, your employer will often be your local authority. However, you may be employed directly by the school (for example, if you're working for an academy or free school). Graduates working in independent schools or colleges are also employed directly by the institution. Discover how to get a teaching job.

Other employers include:

  • central government departments;
  • community and voluntary organisations;
  • museums;
  • the police and probation services;
  • social services;
  • universities.

There are opportunities with both public and private sector employers in a range of careers such as HR, market and policy research, retail management, publishing, education psychology and careers guidance. Find out more about jobs in education.

Find information on employers in teaching and education, charity and voluntary work and other job sectors.

Skills for your CV

You develop specific skills relating to educational issues, theories of learning, equality and diversity, education policy and practice, creativity and education, and a general understanding of education in social, political and economic contexts. Some courses include work placement modules, providing the opportunity to put theory into practice.

You also gain skills that are useful in a variety of job sectors:

  • communication skills - presenting effective oral and written arguments;
  • IT skills;
  • research and analytical skills;
  • interpersonal skills with the ability to work collaboratively as part of a team;
  • problem-solving skills;
  • organisation and time management skills - prioritising your academic/part-time workloads and delivering essays on time;
  • self-management - planning your own workload and reflecting on and improving personal practice.

If you have teaching aspirations you'll need to prepare for and pass professional skills tests. If your sights are set on secondary education discover the essential skills for a secondary school teacher.

Further study

Achieving Qualified Teacher Status (QTS) through completion of the PGCE (PGDE in Scotland) or equivalent postgraduate qualification is a popular route for education graduates.

Alternatively, you may wish to take a Masters course in education or a related social science in order to develop your understanding of the theory, research and policy of education and to enhance your professional knowledge, skills and practice. Some education graduates go on to study for a PhD in education. Another option is the Masters in TESOL (Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages).

For more information on routes into teaching and to find a course that interests you, see teacher training and education and search postgraduate courses.

What do education graduates do?

Half of the education graduates in employment in the UK six months after graduation are working as primary and nursery education teaching professionals. A further 10% are working as teaching assistants.

Further study11.5
Working and studying3.7
Graduate destinations for education
Type of workPercentage
Education professionals60.6
Childcare, health and education work20.1
Legal, social and welfare4.3
Retail, catering and bar work4.1
Types of work entered in the UK

Find out what other graduates are doing six months after finishing their degrees in What Do Graduates Do?

Graduate destinations data from the Higher Education Statistics Agency.