Am I Eligible to Apply?

Can a member of staff without QTS apply for an NPQ and get DfE funding?

Yes, the DfE has confirmed that QTS is not a requirement for NPQs. This is most likely relevant to participants on the NPQEYL and NPQLBC. There will be some academic reading (not an extensive amount) so suitability of candidates without a degree level qualification would be considered on a case by case basis. Applicants without QTS can apply for a TRN (Teacher Reference Number) by following the steps outlined here.

Can I apply for an NPQ if I am not a UK trained teacher?

Yes, and if you are employed by a school in England or work in an Early Years’ setting you may also be eligible for full funding. You will need to apply for a TRN (Teacher Reference Number) by following the steps outlined here. We recommend applying as early as possible for your TRN. There are sometimes delays in receiving them.

I have previously completed an NPQ in the old framework, can I do the same course again?

Yes. The specialist NPQs are completely distinct from the old NPQML and the TDT NPQSL and NPQH have been designed from scratch, so you will have a different experience doing the same course again.

I am currently on the SLT in my school, can I do the NPQH?

The NPQs are designed to help you do your job better, rather than as a prerequisite for a new role. The real question is how soon do you see yourself in a headship role. If you will be taking on a headship before the end of the 18 month course, then the NPQH will be a good fit for you. If you are in your first 5 years of headship and are completing the NPQH or have done so previously you would also be eligible for the EHCO (Early Headship Coaching Offer).

Who is eligible for the EHCO?

The Early Headship Coaching Offer lasts for the duration of an academic year, starting during the New Head Teacher’s first five years in role. The EHCO is a targeted package of support aimed at new headteachers, and based on the content of the new NPQH, which has been reformed to ensure it is underpinned by the latest and best evidence. 

DFE funding is available for Headteachers in the first five years of headship at a state-funded school or state funded 16-19 organisation in England upon starting training. Participants must have completed NPQH before taking up their first headship post or be currently taking the NPQH.

Can I take an NPQ if I am based abroad?

Our NPQ programmes are blended – both online and in person. If you can come to England to attend the compulsory face to face sessions then you can sign up for an NPQ with any of our local delivery partners. Full prices will apply as you will not be eligible for scholarship funding. 

We also deliver NPQ courses with our delivery partner based in Abu Dhabi, the Zen Professional Development / UAE Research Schools Network.

Am I Eligible for Funding?

Who is eligible for full scholarship funding?

Please see the government website here for information and guidance on funding for NPQ courses.

What if my school/early years setting is not eligible for funding?

You will need to speak to the relevant senior lead at your school/setting to find out if your school/trust/setting will support you with the cost of your NPQ. You also have the option of self funding or coming to a part-payment arrangement with your school or trust.

I’m not eligible for funding, how much does an NPQ course cost?

All of our course costs are provided here on our website.

I’m an ITT Lead Mentor and I don’t work in a school. Do I qualify for funding?

Applicants who are ITT Lead Mentors for providers accredited to deliver ITT from 2024 are eligible for scholarship funding for the NPQ for Leading Teacher Development. This includes ITT Lead Mentors working in non-school settings and in school settings that are not on the high disadvantage list. This eligibility does not include people who are ‘planning to become a Lead Mentor’, they must already be in role

My Application

How do I apply for an NPQ from abroad/outside the UK?

To apply for an NPQ course please follow our application process. The process to apply for an NPQ, for all applicants, is to initially register with the DfE by completing the DfE registration form. You will need to apply for a TRN if you do not already have one.

I am currently completing my application, which delivery partner should I select?

We would suggest selecting a delivery partner who is local to you. You can find more information about our delivery partners, their location and the NPQ courses they are offering by following this link.

Why do I need a sponsor and who should I select?

You need a sponsor to provide support throughout the course including ensuring you have time to engage with the training, including release time to attend training events or webinars, including half day face to face sessions. An appropriate person to be your sponsor would often be your head of school or direct line manager depending on where you work. Please see our sponsor page for more information.

Would I be required to attend in person sessions on an NPQ course?

Yes, you will be required to attend several sessions in person during your NPQ course. The number of these sessions will depend on the course you’re applying for. Please see information on each of our courses here on our website.

I’ve submitted my NPQ application, but I haven’t heard anything. What do I do?

Please contact the TDT Customer Support Team at It may be that your application is still with your sponsor or delivery partner for review, or there may be another problem. Please note, the TDT application is separate from the DFE registration. Please ensure that you have completed the full TDT application.

I completed my DfE registration but I have not heard back from TDT. When can I expect a response?

You should receive an instant automated response from us with a link to your TDT application form once you have completed your DfE registration form. If you have not received this please contact the TDT Customer Support Team at

When will my sponsor receive their form to complete?

The sponsor form should go to your sponsor automatically once you complete your application. If your sponsor has not received their form, pIease contact the TDT Customer Support Team at who can help you with this.

Why haven’t I received a decision from my delivery partner yet?

Your delivery partner will review your application and make a decision as soon as possible, but this can be any time up to the application deadline date. If you haven’t heard within 2 working days after this date, or if you have any other questions, then please contact the TDT Customer Support Team at

When will I receive the NPQ Agreement to sign from eSignatures?

The NPQ Agreement should automatically be sent to you from the Teacher Development Trust via eSignatures (from this email address: as soon as your delivery partner has approved your application. If you have not received this agreement either to your main inbox or your spam folder, please contact the TDT Customer Support Team at

My application for an NPQ course has been rejected. What can I do?

If your application for an NPQ course has been rejected you can take several actions:

    • You can take note of the reasons given by your chosen delivery partner for rejecting your application, and contact the TDT Customer Support Team at if you have any further questions

I have a place on an upcoming NPQ course, do I need to do anything further?

Once you have received confirmation that you have been accepted onto your NPQ course and you and your sponsor have both signed your NPQ agreement, you will not need to do anything further at this stage. We will be in touch with you regarding your enrolment and with further course information before the start of your course. However, please contact the TDT Customer Support Team at if you have any questions.

What if I move school during the course?

If you commence an NPQ course and then move school, you will still be able to continue your study. You will just need to update your details with the TDT Customer Support Team. The Customer Support Team will then update your record and ask you and your new sponsor to sign a new NPQ Agreement.

Furthermore, if you are taking the NPQH and become a headteacher in your new school then you would be eligible for the fully funded EHCO element.

How much study time will be expected of me?

Please see our course pages for specific information on the study time requirements for each course.

Can I complete the DfE registration form on behalf of someone else?

Yes, you can complete the DfE registration form on behalf of a colleague, but you must do so using their details (name, email address, TRN) and not your own. If you use any of your own details then the application may not be processed properly and will likely be invalid. Your colleague must then be the one to complete the full application form, you cannot do this for them.

Get ready for Autumn 2024 with our NPQ Q&A webinars