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An IT Trainer is someone who specialises in teaching IT skills to clients. This could cover courses teaching the use of basic desktop programmes (such as Word and Powerpoint), right up to tutoring more technical aspects – programming, for instance.
Usual places of work include colleges, IT training companies and in large companies’ training departments. It is possible to be teaching either face to face or within a Virtual Learning Environment (VLE).
How to become an IT Trainer
There are many routes into this career, with the most common being to work in IT and pick up the skills on the job, or to qualify as a training officer, and specialise in IT skills within this.
Regardless of the path you take, you’ll usually need a recognised IT qualification at Level 3 or above. There are numerous courses that can be taken. Those relating to desktop programmes include:
- OCR Certificate/Diploma for IT Users – Level 1 (New CLAiT), Level 2 (CLAiT Plus), and Level 3 (CLAiT Advanced)
- City & Guilds E-Quals IT Users awards (7262) – Level 1 (Certificate), Level 2 (Diploma) and Level 3 (Advanced Diploma)
- Edexcel (BTEC) National Certificate and Diploma for IT Practitioners
The Institute of IT Training (IITT) also offer IT trainer courses, and accept other qualifications as evidence of training.
For qualifications relating to desktop applications, companies including Microsoft and Cisco offer courses, while technical training is offered by the Computer Technology Industry Association (CompTIA), whose Certified Technical Trainer (CTT+) covers areas such as PC maintenance, networking and security.
Skills and knowledge required
The emphasis for an IT Trainer is to be up to speed on the latest software and systems that you’re working with, as well as an excellent communicator.
- Excellent knowledge of common IT programmes and systems
- Good communication skills
- Good planning and organisational skills
- Patience, leadership and problem solving skills
- The ability to work with individuals and groups
- The ability to assess your client’s level of knowledge and tailor your training accordingly
The starting salary for an IT Trainer is usually £18,000, which can go up to between £19,000 and £26,000 for those with more experience. If an IT Trainer takes on management responsibilities, they can expect the salary to go up to around the £30,000 mark.
Hours will vary depending on the client or company you work for. A full-time role will traditionally consist of around 40 hours a week between Monday and Friday, although more unconventional weekend or evening hours may be required by an employer or client instead.
www.iitt.org.uk (The Institute of IT Training)
www.microsoft.com/uk (Microsoft UK)
www.cisco.com/cisco/web/UK (Cisco Systems)
www.comptia.org (Computer Technology Industry Association)
www.e-skills.com (e-skills UK)
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