In Colleges of Education teachers are trained for elementary schools in six semester courses. Prerequisites are leaving certificate from an upper school and successful completion of an aptitude test which demonstrates musical and physical aptitude for the profession of elementary school teacher.
The training is targeted at the students' future careers as elementary school teachers. Thus teaching and methodology occupy a central position in the training courses. The realm of physical education is included in this course of study and has tightly woven practical, theoretical and methodological components. Every elementary school teacher is qualified by his or her training to teach physical education.
The course offers the possibility of specialisation and consolidation so that these teachers can in any event be appointed as specialist teachers of physical education.
Students aiming to enter the profession of high school teaching have, within the framework of a six semester training course at the College of Education, to choose one subject from German, Modern Languages and Mathematics; a second subject from the other compulsory high school subjects and a special subject from human science.
Training for the physical education profession ambraces practical work, lectures and seminars and work on practical physical education methods for secondary school level 1 (years 5 to 8) and polytechnic schools (year 9). For those elementary and high school teachers already in service, courses of study are established at Educational Institutes which prepare students for professional examinations for high schools, special schools and polytechnics. These training courses are devised as block seminars which extend over a period of approximately two years.
In the Professional Training Colleges and Institutes which are responsible for the training of teachers for vocational training schools, teachers in domestic science and vocational schools have the possibility of an extension examination in physical education for vocational schools.
General and vocational upper schools
In the Institutes of Sports Science at the Universities of Graz, Linz, Innsbruck, Salzburg and Vienna the discipline of „Physical Education“ (diploma examination and professional qualification for higher schools) is offered. Students have to undergo an aptitude test before enrolment. The course amounts to at least 8 semesters. After four further semesters it is possible to proceed to doctorate studies.
This discipline can only be chosen in conjunction with a second teaching subject. The current curriculum of the Sports Science Institute of the University of Vienna for the training of teachers for middle and high schools embraces for example two study segments. In the first segment of the total 68 semester week hours to be completed 28 (41%) involve theory and 40 (59%) practical whilst in the second segment the total of 47 semester hours are apportioned 23 (49%) to theory, 12 (25.5%) to practical lesson preparation and 12 (25.5%) to teaching practice and subject teaching theory.
Kindergarten and Social Welfare
The training of kindergarten, nursery and care staff covers five years, can be started from year 9 at the Training Institute for Kindergarten Education (or, as appropriate Care Education) and concludes with the end-of-course and diploma examination. The qualification for this course of training is via an extensive aptitude test through which must be furnished proof of physical aptitude and ability to cope with stress.
Physical education as a teaching subject has the objective additional to the teaching and training exercises of physical education at the upper secondary level of communicating that knowledge and those skills which are required by the professional in the kindergarten, nursery or social welfare context. This means that in practical areas the teaching substance is presented didactically and methodologically in transparent form. From the third year of training the course contents are more strongly targeted towards professional requirements and developed in accordance with subject fundamentals as well as tried and tested in kindergarten, home and nursery practice.
Sports professions, Sports Club Posts
Training for sports federations and umbrella organisations recognised by the Austrian federal sports authority takes place at the National Institutes for Physical Education (the „Sports Academies“) for coaches, instructors, trainers and sports teachers in schools, the gendarmerie, the police force, justice and customs department and for independent sports teachers.
An aptitude test is required for all training courses. The appropriate qualification is awarded on the basis of an end-of-course examination.
For students from the Institute of Sports Science there exists the possibility of receiving exemptions for some course elements of of obtaining direct entry to examination courses (for snow sports this also applies to elite level competitors).
The aim of sports teacher training is to train highly qualified sports teachers. The curriculum provides for specialisation in at least on sports discipline in addition to a general foundation training in sport: in addition to recognised sports disciplines, sport for the disabled, fitness and school physical education may be chosen. The whole training lasts four semesters and is only available at the federal institute for physical education in Vienna.
The courses for teacher and instructor training last one or two semesters and are conducted in cooperation with the appropriate sport federation or umbrella organisation.
The course for trainers lasts three semesters and aims to provide teacher training. It takes place in close cooperation with the appropriate sport federation. Courses for certified trainers last three semesters and build upon completed trainer courses.
The training for tennis teachers lasts three semesters and includes a requirement for practical certification. Training for riding teachers lasts four semesters and practical certification is alos required. The qualifications are agreed with the international sports federation. Following success at the end-of-course examination the award of the professional qualifications of „State-certified Tennis Teacher“ of „State-certified Riding Teacher“ is authorised.
Courses for the training of snowsport teachers (ski or snowboard teachers and ski of snowboard leaders) last two semesters and candidates must show proof of six months practical teaching of leading experience.
The training takes place in the federal institute for physical education in Innsbruck.
Following success at the end-of-course examination the award of the professional qualifications of „State-certified Ski Teacher“ or „State-certified Snowboard Teacher“ ist authorised.