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Qualifications Required to teach in Universities?

Discussion in 'Career clinic' started by coldmetal, Feb 4, 2017.

  1. coldmetal

    coldmetal Occasional commenter

    I am a Further education lecturer (Graphics & Media) but I think I may be better suited to University teaching as I was in industry for many years - I have DTLLS but not MA - can i teach in unis? anyone know what the rules are?
    As I have been a professional I find it problematic when I have to teach the lower level students and it is so frustrating for me they don't get it and they can't do it and theyr'e often not interested anyway; displaying such immaturity as to mess around throughout the sessions - I want to teach people with some affinity and who really want to learn.
  2. blueskydreaming

    blueskydreaming Lead commenter

    You'll need a phd in your subject to teach at uni.

    'As I have been a professional I find it problematic when I have to teach the lower level students and it is so frustrating for me they don't get it and they can't do it and theyr'e often not interested anyway' - but this is the whole point of teaching; your job is to show them how to do things, to inspire and interest them. to guide and help them. If you don't like doing the thing that is the crux of your job, then you need a different job. I think you know that though don't you, having read your other posts.
  3. DYNAMO67

    DYNAMO67 Lead commenter

    I don't think you * need* a PhD to teach in a university, but realistically most will want it. I don't know your subject area though.

    Like the above I question whether this whole profession is for you. I would look to return to industry
  4. MisterW

    MisterW New commenter

    Many academics at universities are more interested in research than teaching. They do research primarily, and write books and journal articles and teaching students tends to be something they do on the side. I'm not sure about your subject specifically though.

    PhD probably the best route in - it's a big commitment though, 3 years full time or at least 6 years part time if you want a job income at the same time (which I presume you do)
  5. teselectronic

    teselectronic Occasional commenter

    You may find most pupils/students don't have the enthusiasm to learn, if your lessons are interesting and you conduct the lesson at the appropriate level, you may find the outcome quite rewarding from both perspectives!
    Hope this helps.
  6. sabrinakat

    sabrinakat Star commenter

    You'll need a PhD, plus some research/conferences/publications*. I think from all you have posted, you might be happier back in industry, though....

    *not always, of course and it's not always a dealbreaker but university teaching isn't a complete picnic, either!
  7. caterpillartobutterfly

    caterpillartobutterfly Star commenter

    Even at university you will have students who struggle to 'get' what you are teaching. I know I drove one tutor mad with my inability to learn, understand or even care much about some parts of quantum physics. And there were definitely students who worked bloody hard to only scrape a third because they just didn't have a clue.
    If you don't actually like teaching, then teaching in any situation will be unfulfilling and frustrating for you. Moving to university, where you will also need to be involved in some research, isn't going to help very much.
  8. coldmetal

    coldmetal Occasional commenter

    I don't think that is strictly true - Teaching those with some aptitude and as well as that an interest to learn is what I am interested in it's why i did DTLLS not - the teaching profession isn't all on one level, thats why we stream and grade students according to their ability. As I have been in industry and used to that level then thats the level I think I would prefer to teach. It's very different to teaching level 2 students who can't understand the concepts or get to grips with the highly technical software and who don't like it and don't really want to be there and students with psychological and behavioural issues. Also students at school leaving age are highly volatile emotionally as they go through puberty. HE students have plateaud out somewhat by then. if you see what I mean
  9. coldmetal

    coldmetal Occasional commenter

    Industry of Graphic and design is highly ageist, it shouldn't be and it's illegal but it is. As a graphic designer over mid 40's one has to be the boss or the owner of the company or be lucky or find another trade. I enjoy teaching those with some aptitude but i can also differentiate to a degree. Teaching L2 students where half the class is L1 because the college accepted anyone because the numbers were so poor makes it much harder.
  10. coldmetal

    coldmetal Occasional commenter

    I do endeavour to make lessons interesting, however when you have a bunch of graphics students who want to design exciting and colourful things many of the units (often the core ones) are so dry and 70% or more based on written work and research and risk assessments and loads of stuff which you will almost never encounter in the actual profession the whole thing often ends up one box ticking exercise and as such the some students hate it and chat and amuse themselves any way they can
  11. coldmetal

    coldmetal Occasional commenter

    I don't think I can go back to education myself and yes i must pay my mortgage
  12. minnie me

    minnie me Star commenter

    I know of several lecturers in a local university where I am an AT who do not have a PhD. Agree that research is a high priority. Academia is not well rewarded financially but rewarding in many other ways I suspect .
  13. caterpillartobutterfly

    caterpillartobutterfly Star commenter

    Then teaching at university is not for you. You don't get to just be a teacher at university, you need to make your own contribution to research work, eg study and learn.

    Not sure what you are going to do, but your posts give more and more weight to the idea that teaching is probably not for you.
    ilovesooty and blueskydreaming like this.
  14. blueskydreaming

    blueskydreaming Lead commenter

    What was the point in asking the question, if you think you already know the answer?

    I used to work at a uni - they took in students with F grades in the subject they wanted to study; do you think they had some aptitude? They didn't. They also struggled to understand concepts, do the reading, write essays, come to class... They were living away from home for the first time, living with others, managing money for the first time; they were emotional and volatile. Mental and emotional wellbeing are currently high on the agendas at universities across the country.

    Perhaps you'd be better suited to returning to industry, and training people on the job?
  15. frangipani123

    frangipani123 Lead commenter

    I don't think you'll need a PhD but a Masters would be required. There are numerous universities out there so I would say register with the website jobs.ac.uk - they will send you job alerts each day so you can see what qualifications they prefer but may not be essential. You could also contact local uni and ask if you could talk to someone in the relevant department who could advise you.

    I taught international students at a Russell group university and loved it, they had a really good attitude. I think in your subject area you may come across some attitude problems but I wouldn't have thought it would be the same as in an FE college. Students are paying a lot to be at university so generally are more serious. Good luck.
  16. minnie me

    minnie me Star commenter

    Or expect a good result because they are paying even if capacity is lacking

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