Moray House School of Education and Sport

Returning to teaching course

This is an online course aimed at teachers who have been out of the profession for a while or have graduated abroad and would like to get back into a teaching job in Scotland. Our next course will start in September 2021.

Children with their hands up

Moray House School of Education and Sport, in partnership with our six partner authorities (City of Edinburgh Council, East Lothian, Fife, Midlothian, Scottish Borders and West Lothian) is offering this online Returning to Teaching course for primary and secondary teachers. 

The course is designed for professionals who have a teaching qualification but have had a career break or are new to the Scottish Education system.

You can find further information on the course by visiting our FAQ page

It is a requirement to be eligible for registration with the GTCS (General Teaching Council for Scotland). If you are not already registered, please contact the GTCS at:

or phone 0131 314 6000.


The course will be most relevant for:

  • Those wishing to return to teaching in Scotland after a period away from the profession.
  • Those wishing to teach in Scotland for the first time from both Primary and Secondary sectors.
  • Those who wish to engage with the course to support a Professional Update submission to the GTCS.
  • Teachers in the independent sector to support a potential GTCS registration application.

Course aims

  • Understand and engage with current National Education Policy and the Professional Teaching Standards in Scotland, providing teachers with information on recent changes in national priorities.
  • Work collaboratively to develop an awareness of professional identity and teacher professionalism, discovering yourself as a learner and as a practitioner committed to career long professional learning.
  • Develop a critical awareness of own values, beliefs and practices and how these align with the Professional Standards and current educational policy in Scotland.
  • Consider and engage with key areas of social justice and equality in the classroom and develop thinking and strategies for a socially just classroom.
  • Understand key legal and policy requirements relating to inclusive policies and strategies in school to address barriers to learning.
  • To advise on current curriculum guidelines and their implications for professional practice.
  • To increase confidence in completing applications and preparing for interview.

Course delivery

This 10-week course has previously run in a blended online learning format but is now offered as a fully online course. The course usually includes two in-person sessions normally held at Moray House School of Education and Sport, University of Edinburgh. Due to current circumstances the face-to-face sessions will not take place. The content from the face-to-face sessions has been uploaded onto Moodle,  our online learning platform. We will review this decision according to  the government guidance on social distancing.

Please see below for an indication of the sessions included in the course.

Week 0 (online)

Introduction to Returning to Teaching (RTT) and the landscape of Education in Scotland

Week 1 (online)

Professional Values Professional Standards Learning for Sustainability The National Attainment Challenge

Week 2 (online)

Introduction to the Scottish Curriculum for Excellence: principles, design and purpose

Week 3 (online)

Curriculum for Excellence / Curriculum for Excellence in Practice / Critical literacy in the classroom

Week 4 (online)

Curriculum for Excellence  / The planning process

Catch-up week

Time to catch up on readings or engage in additional readings on the subject of your choice or even take a break.

 Week 5 (online)

 Getting it right for every child (GIRFEC) Child Protection Mentally Healthy School

Week 6 (online)

Equality, Race, Diversity

Week 7 (online)

Inclusive Pedagogies / Additional Support Needs (ASN), policies and practice

Week 8 (online)

Positive behaviour strategies / Restorative Practice

Week 9 (online)

Assessment as and for Learning

Week 10 (online)

Job applications / Professional Learning and Leadership Development

You can find further information about the course by visiting our FAQ page

Booking information

The  course fee is £450.

Booking for our course starting in March is now complete. We will advertise the dates for the course starting in September 2021 as soon as they are confirmed.

If you would like to be notified of the next course's dates and booking deadline please fill in this form and we will get back to you as soon as we have further information.

Register your interest

If you have any inquiries regarding this course please email us at:

Booking Terms

The Professional Learning Office operates a cancellation policy to ensure that delegates are not disadvantaged by the last minute cancellation of courses due to withdrawals making the course unviable. Cancellations must be made by email to Cancellations made less than 4 weeks before the course are liable for the full amount. Non arrivals are liable for the full fee.

We will use your personal data to allow us to process your registration, communicate with you and obtain your feedback about this course. We are processing the information about you for these purposes because by registering for the course you give your consent for us to do so.

In order to facilitate online bookings for our events, we use Epay - a third party service which is not operated by the University of Edinburgh.

Details of Epay’s privacy policy

We will not share information about you with any other third party.

We will hold the personal data you provided us for 12 months after course completion. If you have agreed to be contacted about future events, we will hold your personal data for as long as you subscribe to these updates. Financial data such as a payment record will be held for 7 years. We do not use profiling or automated decision-making processes.

Read our full privacy notice

Return to Teaching videos

Videos from Rosa Murray (the course organiser), John Swinney (MSP and the Cabinet Secretary for Education and Skills) and previous course participants.

Return to Teaching course videos

Quotations from previous participants

The course has given me much more confidence than I previously had. I feel secure in my knowledge of current policies and practices.

Course participants, 2020

The course was well lead, very supportive and manageable despite working full time and having a family. I wholeheartedly recommend anyone considering a return to teaching to complete this course (actually I think it should be compulsory).

Course participant, 2020

I had a wonderful experience during the RTT course-2019. This course has made me more confident about the know-how of Scottish Education system (laws & policies) in a broader and more structured way.

Course participant, 2019

I thoroughly enjoyed the course and feel motivated and enthusiastic about returning to teaching. The clips and presentations were excellent, and extremely helpful.

Course Participant, 2019

Without the RTT course, I wouldn’t have been back in teaching. Such a valuable course, thanks to all who made it happen.

Course Participant, 2018


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