Selection process

Applications  open  on October 13th, for September 2021. 

Recruitment procedures at MSC

Entry Requirements

Applicants must possess qualifications as follows:

  • A grade C, GCSE in English Language and Mathematics (or overseas equivalent);
  • A first degree from a United Kingdom higher education institution (or overseas equivalent), this must be at least a 2:2* classification and at least 50% of its content should be directly related to your chosen teaching subject. *(PE is such a popular subject the MSC is looking for applicants with a 2:1 or above and minimum of one National Coaching Qualification)

Please note that if qualifications in English or mathematics are anything other than GCSE, candidates should contact the MSC to obtain advice.  Many level 2 qualifications cannot be considered as equivalent as they do not cover the breadth of syllabus required.

For School Direct places additional requirements may be specified by the school. These may differ from subject to subject and between different schools. Please enquire with MSC for advice.

NCTL Skills Test

Candidates thinking of applying for a teacher training course will no longer need to sit the skills tests in numeracy and literacy. Only courses commencing before April 2020 require skills tests completion.

Providers will be responsible for checking candidates' fundamental skills in Maths and English. This will be checked at interview. 


Where candidates are presenting overseas qualifications, it is the applicant’s responsibility to apply to NARIC for a letter of comparability for the relevant GCSE and degree level qualifications, and to enclose a copy of this letter with their application form (NARIC contact details:

Interview Procedures and Adjustments due to COVID 19 

  •  Candidates' applications will be received via UCAS or the DfE system. 
  • MSC will review applications and will either invite candidates to interview via email or publish a rejection notice with guidance on the decision. 
  • There will only be one interview, not our usual two and this will be held via Zoom, candidates will need access to a computer, a webcam and a microphone or built in speaker. 
  • A subject knowledge audit will be sent out for candidates to complete in advance and return prior to interview. As will a numeracy and literacy diagnostic for completion. 
  • The Zoom interview will be conducted by a MSC colleague and up to three school representatives from one school, which we have matched to the candidate. 
  • Schools are selected based on location, subject, type of school (sixth form etc.)
  • A decision will then be emailed to you and published on UCAS. 

We do not expect applicants to have school experience (but it is desirable). We also don't encourage candidates to contact schools regarding visits at this time. 

Guidance on References

The MSC look for two satisfactory references, candidates will be asked to supply contacts and details for two referees at the point of application on the UCAS TT website.

 The following information has been taken from the UCAS website, October 2013.

 If you're still at university or got your degree within the past five years, one reference must be from someone at your university who can comment on your academic ability and potential.

The other reference can be from someone who knows you from work or who can comment on your character and your potential as a teacher**

If you're applying for a School Direct (salaried) route one reference must be from an employer for whom you worked who knows you well.

If you left university more than five years ago, you can choose two referees who know you from work or can comment on how suitable you are for teaching. You can still use an academic referee if you think that's the right thing for you.

If you're providing a reference from a school where you have been employed or have done classroom observation, it should generally come from the head teacher.

**candidates must not use family members, friends, partners or ex-partners as referees.

Please note your application can't be processed unless both references have been received, so make sure you supply them so your application won't be held up.







Standard Stage 1 interview - on hold due to current global situation 

There will be representatives from the partnership who will be conducting the interviews as well as MSC personnel. The interview morning will include

As a trainee teacher, teachers will be expected to deliver aspects of the Personal, Social and Health Education/Citizenship programme with pupils. Part of the selection process during interview 1 will involve applicants leading a 12 minute activity on a pre-chosen topic. 

Standard Stage 2 interview - on hold  

Successful applicants will be invited to an initial interview at the MSC Training Centre after which shortlisting will take place. Following this, an offer of a second interview is sent to successful candidates. The second stage of the interview takes place in a partnership school and is subject specific; candidates will normally be expected to work with a group of pupils. It aims to match the candidate with an appropriate department for training. In this way a "best fit" for the school, department and trainee can be established which results in the best possible outcomes for all parties.

On successful completion of the interview process the school may offer a place on one of our programmes.

This will be conditional on receipt of the following

  • Successful completion of National College for Teaching and Leadership (NCTL) literacy and numeracy tests;
  • Satisfactory references from at least two creditable referees;
  • A DBS (previously CRB) check which clears the applicant to work with young people;
  • A completed health check form which confirms the Fitness to Teach of the applicant;
  • Proof that the applicant is entitled to work in the UK (salaried routes only);
  • Attendance of mandatory MSC induction (normally first week of July);

Applicants who are not offered a place will be contacted by the interviewing school. 

The MSC makes every effort to pair successful applicants with a partnership school. However, on very rare occasions it is not possible to match candidates and schools. This may be because of locations, route or extenuating circumstances (such as staffing changes in school). A place with the MSC is not confirmed until an offer had been made via UCAS TT.

Ofsted Report