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'll 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.

To move away from a career in education, think about what areas of work interest you and carry out research into relevant roles and sectors. Use tools such as Job Match to help you decide what type of career you'd be suited to.

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; if for example, you work for an academy, free school or independent school. You'll also be employed directly by the institution if you work for a college. 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 teacher training and education, charity and voluntary work and other job sectors.

Skills for your CV

Studying education develops specific skills relating to a range of educational topics, including theories of learning, equality and diversity, education policy and practice, and creativity and education.

Your degree will also provide you with a good 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'll also gain the following transferable skills, which are useful to employers in a variety of job sectors:

  • communication skills, for 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, for prioritising your academic workload and delivering essays on time
  • self-management, for planning your own workload and reflecting on and improving personal practice.

To qualify for a place on a teacher training course, you'll need to prepare for and pass professional skills tests. If you want to work in 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).

Find out more information on routes into teaching and search postgraduate courses.

What do education graduates do?

Just under half of education graduates in employment in the UK six months after graduation are working as primary and nursery education teaching professionals. A further 8% are working as teaching assistants.

Further study14.7
Working and studying4.5
Graduate destinations for education
Type of workPercentage
Education professionals58.8
Childcare, health and education work18.7
Legal, social and welfare5.4
Retail, catering and bar work4.7
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.

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