Advanced Practitioner in Schools and Colleges

NCFE CACHE Level 4 Certificate for the Advanced Practitioner in Schools and Colleges

The smartest way to progress your career as a teaching assistant. Get fully qualified online.

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Are you ready to take your career as a TA to the next level? Wondering how to become an Advanced Practitioner? This level 4 teaching assistant course will give you the opportunity to boost your salary, recognition, and responsibilities. Also ideal for those seeking management or mentoring roles, this course will build upon your existing experience and allow you to work unsupervised in a classroom setting within an Ofsted-regulated environment

Designed for TAs already practising at a level 3 standard, it’s specially structured so that you can continue to earn as you learn – simply incorporate your online studying into your working day, and put your newfound skills and knowledge to good use along the way!

You’ll discover how to support children and young people with their mental health and well-being, uncover the roles and responsibilities of a Special Educational Needs Co-ordinator (SENCo), and further improve your working relationship with family members and other education professionals. You’ll complete a detailed research project which will help you to reflect on how to implement positive change in an academic setting and explore leadership and management skills. As you continue to work as a TA, you’ll complete workplace observations that will be signed off by your Oxbridge tutor.

Why study this level 4 advanced practitioner certificate?

  • After completion, you can boost your salary and responsibilities
  • It’s internationally recognised and accredited
  • You can study while you continue to work as a TA
  • You can advance into management or leadership positions
  • You’ll receive unlimited tutor support as you study

What you'll learn

Unit 1 - Enabling Individuals to Learn

In this unit, you’ll understand the roles and responsibilities of an advanced practitioner. You’ll gain awareness of the statutory educational frameworks in the UK and how to safeguard people of all age ranges, for example, against drug use or bullying. You’ll also look at how people learn, put the relevant theory into practice, and evidence how to apply new learning to the day-to-day role, reporting on changes to practice in one’s own setting through development of a learner portfolio. In addition, you’ll be expected to consider how the environment and learning activities influence an individual’s development. Finally, you’ll explore various leadership, mentoring and management skills and styles.

Unit 2 - Understand How to Support Children and Young People to Improve Their Mental Health and Well-Being

In this unit, you’ll uncover the core components of mental health and well-being, such as happiness, confidence and engagement. You’ll analyse factors that influence individuals from infancy to early adulthood, such as language and academic ability. You’ll also gain insight into current legislation within the UK and how individual perceptions can be shaped by media, cultural or public surroundings. Finally, you’ll explore coping strategies and resilience building to better support and improve individuals’ mental health and well-being.

Unit 3 - Working with Others to Support Individuals with Additional Needs and Disability in a School or College

In this unit, you’ll cover current frameworks for inclusive practice, evaluating policies and procedures in relation to statutory frameworks and national guidance. You’ll examine factors that impact those learning with special education needs or disabilities, as well as the level of assistance required to support them. You’ll also discover the role and responsibilities of the Special Education Needs Coordinator (SENCo), analysing strategies used by practitioners to help those with additional needs. Finally, you’ll consider aspects that affect families caring for individuals, evaluate partnership working with other professionals, and reflect on a range of policies and procedures to better support individuals with additional or special educational needs or disabilities in one’s own setting.

Unit 4 - Working with Families and Other Professionals in a School or College Setting

In this unit, you’ll understand the requirements for partnership working in schools and colleges, such as different strategies to incorporate and barriers to overcome when working with families. You’ll discover the diverse needs of families and how to address them. Finally, you’ll learn how to lead, coach and mentor staff within one’s own setting, using methods and strategies for overcoming challenges in relation to partnership working.

Unit 5 - Implementing Change in School or College Setting

In this unit, you’ll plan a research project from scratch. This will include selecting you research topic and using established methods and techniques to design your project. You’ll perform a literature review of academic research papers exploring ideas for change in one’s own setting. You’ll also use research methods to review an established research paper, summarise its main findings, and provide recommendations for change. In addition, you’ll implement and evaluate any changes in one’s own setting. Finally, you’ll consider the nature of your findings and identify various ways and suitable methods in which to explain and share those findings with others.

Extra info

Awarding Body

CACHE logo

CACHE stands for the Council for Awards in Care, Health and Education, and are the leading specialist Awarding Organisation for the Care and Education Sector.

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Course Outcome

At the end of this course, successful learners will receive the following qualification: NCFE CACHE Level 4 Certificate for the Advanced Practitioner in Schools and Colleges. This means that it is independently accredited at a level of learning equivalent to Level 4 on the National Qualifications Framework (NQF) for England, Wales and Northern Ireland.

NCFE CACHE has been developing courses in the childcare, education and healthcare sectors since 1945 and is one of the most reputable awarding bodies for qualifications in the UK and overseas. Practitioners working in these areas are much more employable having gained NCFE CACHE certification and many employers specifically ask for their qualifications when taking on members of staff.

How is this course assessed or examined?

This Level 4 certificate is designed to provide you with everything you need to develop professionally as an Advanced Practitioner and to expand the career opportunities available to you.

This course takes place across five mandatory units, with learners achieving a total of 21 credits. As you demonstrate your ability to work at level 4 in a school or college environment, you will be assessed by written assignments, professional discussions and observations that should take place as part of your everyday routine. Your Oxbridge tutor will sign off your observations, as well as mark your assignments.

Your performance in the workplace can be assessed by a workplace assessor who has held a supervisory role for over two years and has a Level 4 or above support teaching qualification or full teaching qualification. Alternatively, you can be assessed by a colleague who has an assessing qualification such as A1 or CAVA, alongside a Level 4 or above support teaching qualification or a full teaching qualification. Oxbridge will verify the suitability of your assessor, and we offer free guidance on how to observe and write in a format suitable for marking by your tutor if needed. An Oxbridge assessor can also be provided for you if needed, for an additional fee. Find out more about what’s required of an assessor.

When you submit your written work, you will be required to include a bibliography using clear citations and references. You will also need to provide documentation of your work, such as an evidence record, and a log of placement hours. Your tutor will explain exactly what is needed.

Entry requirements

Students should be at least 18 years old and need to be working or volunteering in learning support in a school. Students should also have completed (or be completing) a Level 3 Teaching Support qualification such as NCFE CACHE Level 3 Certificate in Supporting Teaching & Learning.

Our Career Guides that include this course

Career Guide - How to Become a Teacher

How to Become a Teacher

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Are you looking for a hugely rewarding career? One that can take you anywhere in the world? If so, teaching...


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Can I sign up for a Student Beans account and get Student Discounts?

Yes! One of the many benefits of being an Oxbridge student is that you get access to great discounts with a Student Beans account! Eligibility criteria apply and acceptance is made at the discretion of Student Beans. Find out how to sign up.

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What skills do you need to be a teaching assistant?

Becoming an effective teaching assistant can be challenging as well as rewarding, so you’ll need the right attributes to take on the demands of the position.

Here are a few of the skills and characteristics required for the role:

  • Positive outlook towards children and young people.
  • Patient, empathetic, and compassionate personality.
  • Strong written and verbal communication skills.
  • A proactive approach to learning new skills, policies, and practices.
  • Innate respect for diversity and equality.
  • Outstanding team-working skills.
  • Creative aptitude.
  • A principled approach to safeguarding, wellbeing, and safety.
  • Professional attitude.
  • Excellent organisational skills.
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What is the role of a teaching assistant?

Working closely with teachers to create a safe, enjoyable learning environment, teaching assistants help empower children by providing them with the skills and abilities to succeed in and out of the classroom. Teaching assistants play a crucial part in a child’s education and well-being, making it an ideal career for anyone who adores the idea of unlocking people’s potential.

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Why enrol on a teaching assistant course with Oxbridge?

Online teaching assistant training courses are a popular way to access the industry because of the flexibility they offer. Our teaching assistant courses are designed to shape your future, your way – whatever skill level you may have.

Importantly, we understand the difference that great teaching assistants can make to the children they work with. So, from early years to a higher level, we want to help you achieve your goals so you can help them achieve theirs.

When you enrol with Oxbridge, you’ll benefit from our award-winning learning platform, course materials put together specifically for our students by industry experts, and teaching from experienced tutors. You can also book one-to-one sessions whenever you need to ensure you get the most out of your time with us.

Browse all our online courses or speak to one of our helpful learning advisers for more advice and guidance! 🙂

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Courses Taught by Experts


Health care

For 10+ years, my passion for helping learners develop and grow has driven my career as a teacher. To help me progress even further, I am currently studying to achieve the IQA award. I love reading and I’m a self-professed Harry Potter fan. Talk to me about all things history, rock music, tattoos and true crime podcasts. 

Laura, tutor


Education and Childcare

My 30-year stride in education started with childminding, to working with pupils with Special Educational Needs and Disabilities. I then tutored in a national reading programme and went on to become a Higher-Level TA. I’m elated to say I graduated with a First-Class BA Honours Degree when I was 50 – living proof that it’s never too late to chase your dreams!



Counselling and Psychology

I always knew that a career focused around helping people achieve their goals was perfect for me. That’s why I became a tutor. I love to see my student’s confidence flourish as they progress through their courses. It’s important to help them fit their learning goals around their personal commitments so they have the best chance of success! 

Kelly, tutor


Early Years

Beginning my career as an early years practitioner inspired me to step into the world of teaching. I have since elevated my skillset through a range of qualifications including L3 in Assessing Vocational Achievement, L3 in Education & Training and L4 in Internal Quality Assurance. I’m a big kid at heart; I love Disney movies and also dabble in photography.  



STEM and History of Art

Marine biology, jellyfish conservationist, hairdresser, fitness instructor… I have an eclectic backstory! Art is my passion and one of my proudest moments was achieving my Masters in Fine Art. I then requalified as an Art teacher to share my knowledge with my students. For most of my career, I’ve supported vulnerable students with additional needs such as SEMH and SEN.

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Are you ready to change your world?

We appreciate being bold is easier said than done. This is why the team at Oxbridge aim to help you feel confident and rest assured in taking your next steps. Our friendly, knowledgeable Learning advisers are always on hand to offer you the best guidance.