Share this page

Select an icon:

Job Photographs

  • Two women are standing next to a table in an art classroom.  They are both looking at an example of art which is on the table.

    Teaching an artistic technique to a student.

  • A woman is sitting at a desk in an art classroom.  She is looking at various examples of student artwork.

    Marking work.

  • A female student sits at a computer in a classroom.  Next to her, a woman is standing.  They are both looking at the image on the computer screen.

    Helping a student to use design software.

  • A woman is standing in front of three, well-lit, glass shelves.  She is arranging examples of student artwork on the shelves.

    Setting up a display of student work.

  • Two women are standing next to a table in a classroom.  They are both looking at pieces of paper on which pictures have been painted.

    Providing feedback to a student.

  • A woman is sitting at a desk, using a computer.

    Planning and preparing work, using a computer.

  • A woman is placing student paintings onto a wall display, inside an art classroom.

    Pinning up an exhibition of work.

  • A woman is sitting at a long desk, in an art classroom.  She is reading paper documents in front of her.

    Organising an educational trip out to an art gallery.

Art and Design Teacher


Art and design teachers teach a wide range of art, design and craft skills.

Also known as

  • Teacher, Art and Design

Video: - James: Art and Design Teacher

Work Activities

Secondary school art and design teachers help students to develop skills in a wide range of areas, including

  • drawing
  • painting
  • sculpture
  • graphics
  • textile design
  • photography.

They encourage students to use their skills and imagination to get across ideas, feelings and meanings. They teach students about the uses and understanding of art, craft and design in history and society, including in different cultures around the world.

They also plan and lead visits to places of interest such as art galleries and museums, fashion shows and photography exhibitions.

Other activities include

  • Preparing and planning lessons.
  • Creating or adapting lesson resources.
  • Marking work and giving feedback.
  • Going to staff meetings and parents' evenings.
  • Setting and enforcing standards of behaviour.
  • Identifying underachieving pupils and providing extra support if needed.

Personal Qualities and Skills

As an art and design teacher, you'll need:

  • The ability to motivate, inspire and encourage students.
  • Communication skills.
  • The ability to maintain discipline and deal with challenging behaviour.
  • Organisational and planning skills.
  • ICT skills, including in computer-aided design (CAD).

Pay and Opportunities


Teachers in the state education sector are paid on a scale according to their qualifications, experience and responsibilities.The highest salaries are available in inner London schools.

The pay rates (per year) below are approximate.

  • Unqualified teachers [who have not yet received Qualified Teacher Status] earn in the range of £16,000 - £25,000.
  • Qualified teachers earn in the range of £21,500 - £31,500.
  • 'Advanced skills teachers' earn in the range of £37,500 - £57,000.
  • 'Excellent teachers' earn in the range of £39,500 - £52,000.

In the private sector, salaries are generally higher, though they are sometimes linked to state sector pay scales.

Hours of work

Teachers normally work from 8:30 am or 9 am to 3:30 pm or 4 pm, Monday to Friday. However, most teachers work extra hours - marking work, preparing lessons and going to meetings. They often have to work in the evenings and at weekends to prepare lessons and mark work.

Where could I work?

Employers are state and private schools.

There are opportunities to teach in other countries.

Some teachers supplement their income by teaching privately, marking national exams or writing textbooks.

Where are vacancies advertised?

Vacancies are advertised by local authorities and in the local and national press, including The Guardian and The Times Educational Supplement (TES).There are also job boards, such as eTeach.

Entry Routes and Training

Entry routes

Most people become secondary school art and design teachers through a postgraduate PGCE in secondary art/art and design. This leads to Qualified Teacher Status (QTS). Courses are usually one-year full-time.

You need to apply for a PGCE place through UCAS Teacher Training.

There is also the employment-based School Direct scheme: you'll train while working in a school. The expectation is that you'd go on to work in the school or group of schools where you trained, although there's no guarantee of employment at the end of your training.

You can also train in a school after your degree through school-centred initial teacher training (SCITT). These programmes are delivered by groups of neighbouring schools and colleges and often aim to meet local teaching needs.

Teach First is a charity that recruits and supports graduates to teach in challenging schools in a number of UK regions. The programme takes two years to complete.

To achieve QTS, student teachers need to pass tests in English and maths.


Once employed, newly qualified teachers (NQTs) must complete a three-term induction period, usually within a single school year.

Work Experiance

Some entrants will have a relevant degree in Art and Design.


There are opportunities for teachers to move into teacher training, advisory work, educational research or schools inspection.

Teachers can become heads of department, heads of year, or co-ordinators of special educational needs or careers guidance.

Rehabilitation of Offenders

This career is an exception to the Rehabilitation of Offenders Act 1974. This means that you must supply information to an employer about any spent or unspent convictions, cautions, reprimands or warnings, if they ask you to. This is different from other careers, where you only have to reveal information on unspent convictions if you are asked to.


All candidates for teacher training need GCSEs (or recognised equivalent qualifications) at grade C/4 or above in English Language and Mathematics.

If you want to teach at Key Stage 3 (ages 11-14), you must also have a GCSE (or recognised equivalent qualification) at grade C/4 or above in a science subject.

For entry to a PGCE, you'll need a degree in a relevant subject such as art and design, fine art, fashion design, photography or textile technology. Art history can also be acceptable, as long as you can provide evidence of your practical ability in art or a related area.

For entry to a degree in art and design, the usual requirements are:

  • 2/3 A levels, including a relevant subject such as Art and Design or Design and Technology
  • GCSEs at grades C/4 and above in your A level subjects.

Alternatives to A levels include:

  • BTEC level 3 qualifications
  • The International Baccalaureate Diploma.

However, course requirements vary, so please check college/university websites very carefully.

Some universities accept the Welsh Baccalaureate as equivalent to 1 A-level.

Adult Opportunities


If you don't have the qualifications you need to enter a degree course, you might be able to start one after completing a college or university Access course, such as Access to Art and Design. You don't usually need any qualifications to start an Access course, although you should check this with the course provider.

Distance learning

Some PGCE courses are available on a flexible learning basis. For example, you might be able to train by distance learning in combination with classroom-based teaching practice and campus study.

Employment-based training

Instead of going to university to do a PGCE, graduates can follow an employment-based route. This is where you train in a school. Employment-based routes include School Direct, school-centred initial teacher training (SCITT) and the scheme offered by Teach First. For more information, please see 'Entry Routes and Training'.


Trainees through the School Direct Training Programme (salaried) receive a salary. For other School Direct Training Programmes, you might receive a bursary of up to £20,000. For more information, please see the Department for Education website.

Further Information

Chartered Society of Designers (CSD)



UCAS Teacher Training


Teach First


Department of Education Northern Ireland

Northern Ireland Enquiries



General Teaching Council for Scotland (GTC Scotland)

Scottish enquiries




UK government services and information


Teach in Scotland

Scottish enquiries




Hiive is the online professional network for creative people.


Croeso i Gyrfa Cymru

Dewiswch iaith


Welcome to Careers Wales

Please select your language