How to become a British Sign Language teacher
You can get into this job through:
- a university course
- a college course
- working towards this role
- training with a professional body
You can do a foundation degree or a degree in British Sign Language (BSL) and deaf studies.
Some knowledge of BSL will be helpful when you apply, though this is not always essential.
Universities will want to know about your reasons for applying and will assess your BSL skills before you start.
After finishing your course, you could go on to complete a teaching qualification, like a postgraduate certificate in education (PGCE), which you may need if you want to teach in schools.
You'll usually need:
- at least 1 A level, or equivalent, for a foundation degree
- 2 to 3 A levels, or equivalent, for a degree
You can do a Level 1 and 2 Certificate in British Sign Language (BSL) before moving on to a higher level qualification.
Employers including schools and colleges usually look for a minimum of a Level 3 or 4 Certificate in British Sign Language. Some will ask for a Level 6 Certificate.
You'll also be expected to have a qualification in your own subject area aside from BSL, and usually a teaching award. For example a Level 4 or 5 Diploma in Education and Training to teach in a college.
Entry requirements for these courses vary.
You can start as a sign language teaching assistant or communication support worker and do training on the job to get a British Sign Language (BSL) qualification at level 3 or higher. You can then do further study for a teaching or training qualification to become a BSL teacher.
You can also train in BSL, if you're already working as a teacher in a school or college.
You can complete British Sign Language (BSL) qualifications with a professional body like Signature or the Institute of British Sign Language. These organisations offer qualifications from introductory level up to level 6.
It is recommended that you work towards a Level 6 Certificate in British Sign Language, if you want be a BSL teacher.