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CV Tips for SEN Teaching Assistants

Deborah A., Teacher
5 Sep 2023
5 min read
CV Tips for SEN Teaching Assistants

Are you fuelled by an unwavering passion to create a profound and lasting impact on the lives of children with special educational needs (SEN)? If so, embarking on a career as a SEN Teaching Assistant is an incredibly rewarding and fulfilling path to pursue.

However, given the ever-increasing demand for dedicated professionals in this field, it is of paramount importance to craft a SEN Teaching Assistant CV that not only stands out but captivates the attention of potential employers.

In this post, we will delve into seven invaluable tips that will empower you to create an impressive CV, showcasing your exceptional skills, extensive experience, and unyielding dedication to supporting children with SEN.

1. Tailor your CV to SEN

When applying for SEN Teaching Assistant roles, it is essential to tailor your CV to align with the requirements of the SEN field. You can start by highlighting your relevant experience and skills that demonstrate your ability to effectively support children with SEN. Another way is to emphasise any previous work or volunteering experiences where you have made a difference in the lives of children facing learning challenges.

A good way is to share examples of how you have successfully implemented individualised approaches to help children with specific conditions. For example, you could include, "I implemented individualised education plans for students with autism spectrum disorder, utilising visual supports and structured routines to promote learning and independence."

By showcasing your understanding of SEN and your ability to provide targeted support, you will significantly enhance your chances of standing out from other applicants.

2. Showcase Your Exceptional Communication Skills

Working as an SEN teaching assistant necessitates exceptional communication skills. And it is common for employers to seek candidates who can effectively communicate with children, their families, and other professionals. Highlight your ability to adapt your communication style to meet the diverse needs of children with SEN.

Share specific instances where you have successfully used alternative communication methods, such as British Sign Language or visual aids, to facilitate understanding and engagement. For example, you could include, "utilised Makaton to facilitate communication with non-verbal students, effectively conveying their needs and promoting meaningful interactions."

By demonstrating your strong communication abilities, you will highlight your capacity to build meaningful connections with the children you support.

3. Demonstrate Flexibility And Adaptability

SEN teaching assistants often work in dynamic environments that require flexibility and adaptability. Highlight your ability to adapt to changing circumstances and handle unexpected challenges with grace and composure. Share instances where you have adjusted your teaching strategies to accommodate individual needs and overcome obstacles.

Employers value candidates who can think on their feet, remain resilient, and provide personalised support to children with SEN. On top of that, illustrate your willingness to embrace change as a testament to your dedication to the field.

4. Highlight Your Knowledge Of Effective Educational Strategies

To excel as an SEN teaching assistant, it is crucial to stay up-to-date with the latest educational strategies relevant to special educational needs. Include in your CV any training courses or certifications you have completed that demonstrate your commitment to professional growth and development in the field.

For example, you could include:"I completed training in Applied Behaviour Analysis (ABA) to implement behaviour intervention plans and support students with behavioural challenges."

Highlight your understanding of Individual Education Plans and your ability to implement personalised learning strategies tailored to the unique needs of each child. By showcasing your knowledge of evidence-based practices and your ability to create an inclusive learning environment, you will position yourself as a highly valuable asset to any SEN school.

5. Illustrate Your Teamwork And Collaboration Skills

Collaboration lies at the heart of working in an SEN environment. Employers seek candidates who can effectively collaborate with teachers, therapists, and other professionals to provide comprehensive support for children with SEN. To stand out from the crowd, highlight instances where you have worked as part of a team to develop and implement effective support plans.

Emphasise your ability to build positive relationships with colleagues and your commitment to working in partnership with parents and guardians to ensure a holistic approach to each child's development. By showcasing your strong teamwork and collaboration skills, you will demonstrate your ability to contribute effectively to an SEN team.

6. Incorporate Relevant Keywords

Many employers utilise applicant tracking systems (ATS) to streamline the initial screening process. To increase the likelihood of your CV making it past the automated filters, incorporate relevant keywords and phrases that resonate with the SEN field. These may include specific SEN terms, teaching methodologies, or educational software.

However, it is important to strike a balance and avoid overloading your CV with buzzwords. Aim for a natural flow in your writing, ensuring that your content remains authentic and engaging.

7. Pay Attention To Detail and Presentation

In addition to the content, the visual presentation of your CV plays a vital role in making a positive impression. Opt for a clean and professional format that is easy to read and navigate. Use headings, bullet points, and subheadings to organise information and improve readability.

Ensure that your contact details are clearly visible at the top of your CV, enabling potential employers to reach out to you easily. Proofread your CV meticulously to eliminate any spelling or grammatical errors, as such mistakes can detract from your professionalism and attention to detail.

We also strongly recommend covering your last 5 years of work in full, including months of employment. This will help you stand out from the crowd with attention to detail, as well as make the vetting process go more smoothly.

A well-presented and error-free CV reflects your commitment to excellence and significantly enhances your chances of making a lasting impression.


Crafting an impressive CV is a crucial step in securing a rewarding career as an SEN teaching assistant. By tailoring your CV to the SEN field, showcasing your communication skills, demonstrating adaptability, highlighting your knowledge of educational strategies, illustrating your collaboration skills, incorporating relevant keywords, and paying attention to the presentation, you can create a standout CV that captures the attention of potential employers.

Remember to personalise your CV with specific examples from your own experiences and achievements, ensuring that it reflects your passion for supporting children with special educational needs. With a well-crafted CV and your dedication to making a positive impact, you are well on your way to unlocking your path to success as an SEN teaching assistant.

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