How to become a Learning Support Assistant


Do you want to work as a learning support assistant? We’ll help you learn about the skills and qualifications that you need to get the role, how to plan for an interview and how much you’ll earn working as a learning support assistant. 

Step 1: Learn about learning support assistant's role and responsibilities

As a Learning Support Assistants (LSA), you will work with children who find it difficult to learn due to a disability, health issues, family circumstances that has disrupted their education or with those who don’t speak English. You will work with students on a one-to-one basis, however sometimes you will work in groups or support the whole class to help them handle the learning environment.

Depending on the age and the individual needs of the student, your responsibilities could include:

You could work as a LSA in a special school that supports children with special needs or with an individual student or small group of students in a mainstream school.

What are the working hours?

LSAs hours depend if you are working part-time or full-time. You are likely to work school hours, Monday to Friday in term time. You sometimes might go to training or meetings outside schools hours. There are some special schools that are residential, this means you may have to work a mixture of shifts including the weekend.

What kind of salary does a learning support assistant earn?

The average salary for LSA is around £21,785 per year. Entry level positions start around £15,600 per year while the most experienced workers make up to £22,250 per year. Your salary may vary depending on the responsibilities of the role and the region you are in.

Step 2: Improve your chances of getting a learning support assistant job

To become a learning support assistant, you must ensure that you have all of the necessary skills and qualifications for the position and understand what exactly you can do to help yourself get started.
There are not always set qualifications to become a LSA as schools and local authorities have different requirements although having Maths and English at GCSE level is preferred. There are a few things that you can do to improve your chances when you’re looking to enter this career.

Gain some experience that will help you as a learning support assistant

When applying for a learning support assistant role, having experience is helpful in making your application stand out. You usually need experience with children, whether that’s paid work, voluntary activities or experience with children in your personal life.

Think about the transferable skills you will be bringing from previous work and how they will be beneficial in the school environment. 


You do not always need formal qualifications but having GCSE Maths and English (C grade or above) is desirable. If you don’t have either English, Math or both then you should look at taking either a Level 2 Functional Skills English course or Level 2 Functional Skills Maths course. A functional skills qualification is equivalent to having your GCSE qualification at this level, and can help you improve your employability. 

Previous qualifications in similar settings, such as nursery work, childcare or youth work can help you stand out.

You can do a college qualification such as:

Qualifications in childcaresafeguarding, first aid, and, equality and diversity will help you standout when candidates are being shortlisted for interviews.

Step 3: Update your CV

You should make sure that your CV is up to date, including any relevant qualifications and work experience you may have. It is important to use your CV to sell your skills to show you are an ideal candidate. For help and tips with writing your CV check out our Learning Support Assistant CV guide 

Step 4: Search for learning support assistant jobs to apply for

The next step is to search for learning support assistant jobs to apply for, this should be simple and shouldn’t be any different than finding any other job you have applied for before. Make sure you read the  job description and requirements to ensure you are a good fit for the role and have all the necessary qualifications.

Check out our job board to begin your search!


Step 5: Write a personal statement or cover letter

You should write your cover letter using the job description of the vacancy you are applying for to ensure you are displaying that you are an ideal candidate. Work through the job description as you write the cover letter matching up your skills and experience with the ones they’re looking for. For more tips on writing your cover letter,  check out our learning support assistant cover letter help page. 

Step 6: Interview preparation

Job interviews can be nerve-wracking. Being well prepared for the interview will help you appear more calm and confident. In addition to presenting yourself professionally, prepare yourself for the questions commonly given to learning support assistants.

There are some great online resources listing popular learning support assistant interview questions which will help you to know what to expect. Check out our own page of popular questions for learning support assistants. 

Learning Support Assistant Pages