Lecturer (adult education): job description

Adult education lecturers teach academic and vocational subjects to adults of all ages and academic abilities.
Salaries for part-time lecturing work range from £17-£30 per hour

What does an adult education lecturer do? Typical employers | Qualifications and training | Key skills

Typical responsibilities of the job include:

  • developing programmes of learning activities;
  • planning, preparing and researching lessons;
  • preparing teaching materials;
  • contact/teaching time with students on an individual or group basis;
  • checking and assessing students' work and giving feedback;
  • encouraging personal development via tutorial/pastoral work;
  • invigilating examinations;
  • attending staff meetings;
  • liaison with other professionals/employers.

The job commonly requires working evenings and weekends. Many people enter the profession via part-time/temporary contracts, supplementing their salary via writing, private tuition and exam marking or by taking up several part-time posts.

Typical employers of adult education lecturers

  • state-maintained and private sixth-form, adult and further education colleges
  • community or local authority adult education centres
  • the Armed Forces
  • the Prison Service.

Vacancies are advertised in local authority jobs lists, Appointments for Teachers, The Times Educational Supplement, The Times Higher Education Supplement and national, regional and local newspapers. A few specialist recruitment agencies such as Education Lecturing Services (Nottingham) also handle vacancies.

Qualifications and training required

There are no set academic requirements for entry into the profession, although at the very least candidates must possess a City and Guilds 7306/7307 qualification. Consequently, a degree in any subject is acceptable for entry (although one that is relevant to the subject taught may be preferred).

Gaining Qualified Teacher Status (QTS) via a Postgraduate Certificate In Education (PGCE) is beneficial and may be essential for full-time posts. Information about the PGCE can be obtained from the Teacher Training Agency or the Graduate Teacher Training Registry - GTTR (see ‘Secondary School Teacher' for more information). Employers may favour candidates who have several years pertinent work experience. Some employers provide the opportunity to gain a teaching qualification via part-time study once in post.

Key skills for adult education lecturers

  • Ability to work well with students of all ages and backgrounds.
  • Organisational skills.
  • The ability to work as a team with colleagues.
  • Extensive knowledge of your own subject area.
  • Effective verbal communication skills.
  • Written skills to produce coursework materials.
  • Creative skills to plan and deliver interesting lessons and lectures at the right level for your students.