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Career Change From Teaching
Career Change

Career Change From Teaching

Outsiders may think teachers get an easy ride thanks to their short working days and long vacations. But those in the role know it’s one of the most grueling professions around, with (sometimes) difficult children and endless time spent planning lessons and marking work. Ready for a change? Few jobs are more important than that of a teacher — you’re literally nurturing the future of your country. Unfortunately, they don’t always get the recognition they deserve, facing a lack of resources, often low salaries, and poor treatment from students’ parents. Whether it’s one of the reasons above or something else that makes you want to take a career change from teaching, listen to yourself. We’re here to help you get ready for a new and fulfilling life, whatever that may look like. To do that, we’ll outline our top roles for ex-teachers and how to start planning for your career change.

Nelson Marteleira
September 10, 2022

Still Weighing up That Career Change from Teaching?

Two books and two blue and yellow chalk sticks on a desk. Black board with ABC letters on background
Ready for a career change?

Any teacher who says they’ve never considered moving into another job for a second is probably lying — most have experienced low points that have led them to reassess their choices. But how can you differentiate these breakdowns from a genuine desire to leave teaching forever (or at least for an extended period)? 

Here are some signs to look for.

  • Perpetual burnout. It’s normal to feel burned out now and then, especially in the run-up to school vacations. But if that’s your daily reality, you may be ready for a new career.
  • A loss of passion. Did you get into teaching out of a desire to help people but now you’re losing faith and becoming a cynic? Rekindle that passion with something new.
  • Lack of motivation. If you’re feeling unmotivated to do your job properly (perhaps due to the factors above), you might find yourself cutting corners or lacking professionalism. In that case, it may be better for everyone if you move on.
  • Negative emotions. Perhaps even worse than burnout is feeling strong negative emotions like anger or sadness about your work. You wouldn’t tell a friend to keep struggling on if they hate their job, so don’t make yourself do it either.

Do any of the signs above sound familiar, or maybe every single one of them? There’s a whole new world of opportunities out there, starting with citizen development. 

Woman with forehead lying down on laptop showing signs of lack of energy
Breakdown or a genuine desire to stop teaching?

Best Career Change Option: Become a Citizen Developer

Teaching in some form is one of the oldest jobs there is, while tech is one of the newest industries — so moving from one to the other might sound like a drastic change, especially if you’re not teaching information technology or a related subject. 

Yet whether you’ve considered it or not, you’ve probably heard about the generous salary up for grabs in the tech world. According to the Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM), the average tech salary in the US in 2021 was above six figures. And thanks to new career paths like citizen development, that might not be as out-of-reach as many people assume.

What do citizen developers do?

Tech savvy woman working on a website at her laptop. Notebook, mobile and glasses at her left
What do citizen developers do?

So, what exactly does this promising career encompass, you’re probably wondering? Essentially, citizen developers create programs that once required coding knowledge, but they do it using much simpler software. This allows them to make anything from mobile apps to marketing automations to databases using tools that will seem much more familiar than a programming language.

These programs often involve dragging and dropping different elements, in a similar way to how you use a website builder or a basic graphic design tool. However, once you know how to use the applications, they allow you to make far more complex creations.

Average citizen developer salary


Can teachers easily become citizen developers?

Laptop, notebooks and coffee on desk. Tech savvy building software entitle design anything
A little tech literacy might be helpful

The word “easy” is subjective. Making the shift from teaching to citizen development isn’t something you can do overnight. But is it harder than educating and engaging a class of children or young people? Maybe not.

All teachers have plenty of resilience, which goes a long way when learning a new skill, so this may give you an edge over others. Plus, when teaching, you’re likely to already be using various software programs. While this might be a far cry from being able to code, a little tech literacy can go a long way to helping you understand the basic logic behind programs.

Kickstarting your citizen developer career: Top tips

If you like the idea of being a citizen developer, you might be keen to get the ball rolling as soon as possible. The good news is that you won’t need to go back to school to obtain a degree to get a job — in fact, you can teach many of the core skills to yourself through Google searches and YouTube.

However, if you’d prefer to have a smoother experience and fast-track your career, you might want to consider taking a course with a ready-made curriculum and support from experts.

The No-Code Foundations Program walks you through the basis of no-code development, such as how to create automations, websites, apps, and more. You’ll finish the program with not only development skills but also a portfolio, network, and knowledge on how to find a job in the area.

Nocode Foundations Program topics banner
Nocode Foundations Program

The Top 5 Jobs That Offer a Career Change from Teaching

Even if you don’t think no-code development is the right route for you to go down, it doesn’t mean that you’ll be stuck in teaching for the rest of your life. There are plenty of good alternatives — and no, they’re not all in the tech industry.

1. Project manager

Earning potential: $75,000-$85,000

Moving from teaching to the private sector might be unconventional, but many before you have done it successfully. Often, they find the skills they learn as a teacher lends themselves to the corporate world too. For instance, teaching a class leads to great public speaking, and getting  the best out of students makes it easier to work with difficult personalities in the workplace.

Project management can be a lucrative and in-demand career that encompasses all these aspects. You’ll oversee projects and coordinate everyone involved to ensure deliverables are met and stakeholders are happy.

2. Corporate trainer

Earning potential: $55,00-$65,000

Love teaching but wish you had a more attentive and mature audience? There’s a huge demand for coaching and training in the corporate world. Offering training to other educational professionals is the obvious route, but you could provide training on other topics of interest too, such as psychology or multiculturalism. 

3.Nonprofit manager

Earning potential: $50,000-$60,000

Teaching isn’t the only way to make a difference in the world. A career in a nonprofit can be incredibly fulfilling — and as you have a background in education, you may be a natural fit for a charity that focuses on this area. The role may involve event management, collaborating with partners, and organizing programs.

Although the nonprofit sector can be a competitive industry to get into, if you can leverage your background and you’re prepared to be patient or even do some volunteering first, you might just make it.

4. Educational Consultant

Earning potential: $60,000-$70,000

If you still want to make a difference to education but you’re tired of doing that by having to work within the system, you might prefer to be one of the people trying to change it.  Educational consultants work with schools to improve their processes — if anyone can do that, it’s someone who has been on the front lines before.

5. Journalist

Earning potential: $50,000-$60,000

Teachers tend to be keen scholars, meaning they know how to communicate and research and enjoy showing their ideas to others. Journalism is a career that lends itself to this nicely.

Rather than working for a single outlet, you could also consider freelance journalism, which is a great way to experience a range of projects and have complete flexibility and have freedom over what you do.

A Guide to Making a Career Change from Teaching

Making a career change doesn’t start and end with identifying your next career. Once you have an end destination in mind, it’s time to reflect on what you have to offer and how you can harness that to your advantage.

Topics about a day in the life of a teacher: grade papers, develop plans, track achievement, instruct
@Emily Roberts

Assess your transferable skills

We’ve briefly touched on some typical transferable skills of teachers already, but let’s take a more detailed look at the most useful and how they can help you.


Nothing screams resilience quite like maintaining your composure when a class of students are laughing at you or keeping focused for hours on end to educate your class when you’re actually ill and tired. If you’re a teacher, you’ve probably been in these types of situations more than once, ensuring you ooze grit and determination.


As a teacher, if you fail to plan your lessons ahead of time, you’ll be left standing in front of your class with nothing to say and damage the education of your class. The discipline and organization you gain from this reality means you’ll soon be the most reliable person in your team at any future role.


Leadership is a skill that’s in short supply, but you can’t be a teacher without it. The job requires you to command the attention of your class and figure out how to get the best out of people that may have vastly different personalities. Don’t underestimate yourself here.


No matter how good you are at planning your lessons, unexpected events are always going to spring up in the classroom, whether that’s a power cut or a fight breaking out. All teachers know how to solve problems creatively, which is a hugely valuable skill.

Think about your values

Skills: Experience, training, competence, learning, knowledge, advanced training, growth, ability
Combine your skills towards your values

It’s not just about what you can do — it’s about what you want to do. Consider your values in life and what gives you a sense of purpose. Combined with your skills, this should help you to build a picture of the kind of future you want.

Which jobs or employers would allow you to work toward things that line up with your values, while also using your greatest strengths and talents? You probably won’t find an answer straight away, but if you keep brainstorming and researching, you’ll get there.

Making a Plan to Leave Teaching

Notebook with hand draw post-it with words "make it happen"
Make a plan!

Now you’ve reminded yourself of who you are and what you have to offer, it’s time to start making things happen. That means making a plan about what you need to do to make the switch to your new career.

This may vary depending on the industry you want to go into, but we recommend following the framework below as a general guide.

  1. Be specific about what you want

At this stage, you should have already come up with an idea of the job you want to go into. But if your plans are still vague or you’re considering a few different careers, you need to make your final decision before you can go any further. You stand a better chance at success if you go all-in for one thing instead of making a half-hearted attempt at multiple things. 

  1. Decide on your timeframe and approach 

Are you going to continue your current job and apply for your new career on the side? Will you take a break for a few months while you begin your career change? These are the questions you need to answer, because they will form the basis of the rest of your approach.

Once you have a timeframe in mind, you can think about how you’re going to use that time as effectively as you can to find a job in your desired field. For instance, will you stay in your current school and volunteer in a project related to your desired career change? Or will leaving a full-time job be needed to free you up to start attending college to do a course?

Agenda, hand holding a tablet with busy calendar open, mobile, coffee and glass water bottle on white desk
Your timeframe, your approach
  1. Start upskilling

In almost all cases, your strategy to execute a career change is going to involve improving your skills — after all, that’s a huge part of what lands you a new role. Even if it’s not strictly necessary to have a specific qualification to land the job you want, having completed some kind of training or course is a great way to stand out from other applicants. 

Choose the skill most relevant and look for ways you can improve your abilities.

  1. Use your network

Most people will try to skip this step, because the prospect of contacting people they know and asking them for help sounds too daunting. However, this uncomfortable step could make the difference between you making hundreds of job applications that go nowhere and having a conversation that leads straight to an interview.

Even if you don’t think you have any useful contacts, it’s good to get into the habit of mentioning your desired career change to everyone you speak to. You never know who could know someone, or know someone that knows someone. 

Other considerations are looking for local networking events through sites like MeetUp and harnessing LInkedIn to talk to people doing the jobs you’re keen to move into.

board game pieces in several colors all connecter with black lines
Spread the word about your career change
  1. Apply, apply, apply

Making job applications might not be the most exciting part of making a career change, but you can’t land a new role without doing it. Many people find it helpful to set themselves a target for how many applications they want to make per day or to set a routine to help them stay productive. Otherwise, it’s easy to convince yourself you’re being more proactive than you really are.

Upskill With the No-Code Institute 

As you can see, upskilling is a crucial component to landing the job you want as quickly as possible. There are lots of different ways to upskill, including learning independently — but for the best and quickest results, it’s usually  best to enlist the help of experts to keep you motivated and help you learn faster.

No Code Institute’s Foundations program walks you through the key programs and skills you need to build automations, websites, apps, and more without coding. Best of all, you’ll receive feedback and support from mentors as you learn. And it’s not just about the theory, as the program also gives you support for finding a job, including coaching and a network.

Nocode Institute numbers: 90% success, 3x salary, 90% remote work
Nocode Institute's numbers

Kiss Goodbye to the Classroom

Whether you’ve been a teacher for six months or six years, don’t feel that you’ve wasted your time up to now or that you’re throwing away your training by taking a career change. Humans are multi-faceted, and as you should realize by now, the skills you pick up in one job will almost always lend themselves to another.

The only thing left is to start applying for roles and see how it leads you. And don’t forget, if you think a job as a citizen developer could suit you, be sure to check out No Code Institute and its programs for a first-class education.

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Nocode Institute Foundations Program

Nelson Marteleira

Nelson is the co-founder NoCode Institute. He is an experienced NoCode specialist and developer with a solid portfolio. Nelson helps bring ideas to reality.

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