Teacher - Secondary School - Religious Education

RME teacher religious, moral and philosophical education teacher
Education and training

Career outlook for teacher - secondary school - religious education

UK Salary Ranges





Currently employed in Scotland


Salary information is provided by the "National Careers Service". "Oxford Economics" supplies job forecasts and employment figures. Due to COVID-19 the jobs market is constantly changing. Some of the information may not reflect the current situation.

What's it like?

You would teach young people about different religions, philosophy and values and help them appreciate the global diversity of beliefs.

You would work with young people from 11 to 18 years old, in state and independent schools. You might also work in a college or learning centre.

As a religious education - or religious and moral education – teacher, you’d help your pupils recognise and understand religious diversity and non-religious beliefs and the importance of these in society.  You'd inspire and motivate them to explore different values and attitudes and consider moral and ethical issues to help them reflect on their own approach to making moral decisions.

You’d teach students of different ages and abilities and prepare young people to take the National Qualifications and Highers in this subject.

There is national guidance for Curriculum for Excellence religious and moral education, for religious education in Roman Catholic schools and for National Qualifications which you would use when planning your teaching.

You would:

  • Prepare lessons and teaching materials
  • Assess students’ progress and mark their work
  • Set homework
  • Manage classroom behaviour
  • Discuss students' progress with parents and carers
  • Organise study trips, social activities and sports events.

You’d encourage the students to take pride in their achievements inside and outside school. You’d support them to build good relationships with other students and teachers and play a positive part in the life of the school and the local community.

You’d help them get the knowledge, skills and attributes they’ll need for a successful and positive life when they leave school.

Sometimes you will need to deal with challenging behaviour. It may be difficult to get some teenagers to study so you’d need to be imaginative and enthusiastic to keep them interested.

You’d need to attend meetings and training courses. You’d work closely with colleagues to plan the school’s timetables, and work with other professionals, such as education psychologists and social workers.

Working conditions


Teaching takes place for 39 weeks a year, usually from 9am to 3.30pm or 4pm. You are likely to spend several more hours outside of these times, planning lessons, marking pupils' work and taking part in activities such as outings, parent evenings and training.


Secondary school teachers often have a base classroom. However, from time to time they may have to carry books and equipment from room to room. This is subject to the space available in each school.


You could do supply teaching where you work in different schools for short periods to cover the absences of permanent teachers.

UK employment status





Self employed


Create a qualification route

We've found some examples of the qualifications that could help you get this job.

Discover my route

Search course options

Thinking about your future? There are lots of courses available that could interest you. Use our course search to explore course options.

Find courses

Search job opportunities

If you're looking for your new career our job search can help you. Discover interesting opportunities and decide your next steps.

Find a job

Here are some of the skills needed for this job. Sign in to see how your skills match up.

  • Supporting
  • Verbal communication
  • Written communication
  • Empathising
  • Respecting
  • Social conscience
  • Ethical
  • Coaching
  • Mentoring
  • Motivating others

Skills Explorer

Your skills can help you choose the career that's right for you. You can build your skills through work, study or activities you do in your spare time.

To understand more, have a look at What are my skills?

Our Skills Explorer tool will help you understand what skills you have and match them to jobs that might suit you.

Use the Skills Explorer tool

Getting in

Entry requirements for courses can change. Always contact the college, university or training provider to check exactly what you'll need.


You'll need a degree in religious studies or philosophy (SCQF Level 9/10). 

To become a qualified teacher, you'll need to complete a PGDE - Professional Graduate Diploma in Education - in Religious Education (SCQF Level 11). 

If you don't already have a degree, you can study a combined honours in Professional Education (Secondary) with Religious Education (SCQF Level 10) which combines religious studies or philosophy with teacher training.  

The enter a religious studies or philosophy degree usually requires National 5 qualifications and at least four Highers at B or above. Some courses will require this in one sitting. 

If you are applying for a PGDE, you will need a relevant degree with at least 80 SCQF credit points in subjects such as: 

  • Religious studies
  • Philosophy
  • Theology 
  • Divinity
  • Sociology of religion
  • Anthropology of religion
  • Psychology of religion

Useful subjects

  • Higher English (required by courses)
  • National 5 maths (required by courses)
  • Religious and moral education
  • Philosophy
  • Social studies subjects such as psychology

You will also need

To be approved for membership of the Protecting Vulnerable Groups (PVG) Scheme run by Disclosure Scotland.

Helpful to have

Qualifications and experience that demonstrate the ability to work with children or young people, communication skills and experience in religious, philosophical or community centred activity will be helpful.

You will be expected to support literacy, numeracy and health and wellbeing as well as your own subject.