Bank Teller Education Requirements

Bank tellers require little formal education. Learn about on-the-job training, job duties and requirements to see if this is the right career for you.

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Essential Information

Bank tellers aid customers in making deposits, withdrawals and other transactions. Most bank tellers hold a high school diploma or the equivalent and receive on-the-job training after they're hired. They need to be familiar with basic computer use and might be tested on general math aptitude. A background check is also required. During their on-the-job training, they learn to perform various teller duties and get information on the bank's policies and practices.

Required Education High school diploma or GED certificate
Other Requirements Math proficiency test, background check
Projected Job Growth (2012-2022)* 1%
Median Salary (2013)* $25,390

Source: *U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS).

Educational Requirements

Bank teller positions require a high school diploma or GED. A college degree isn't necessary to find work, but a 2-year associate or 4-year bachelor's degree in math, finance or business might help one get hired or promoted. Education in a second language can also help in finding work with banks looking for applicants fluent in foreign languages.

Prospective tellers are tested on their aptitude with figures. They generally need to be able to work on computer terminals. Since they handle cash and personal information, applicants must pass a thorough background check.

Certificate Programs

Though not required, some schools offer short bank teller education programs resulting in a certificate. Classes in these programs explain bank operations, banking regulations, ethics and teller duties. The curriculum is designed to strengthen the student's math and customer service skills.

On-The-Job Training

During on-the-job training, tellers are introduced to the bank's computer applications, trained on cash-counting and check-processing machines and taught how to interact with customers. They must also learn the bank's security, audit and compliance procedures.

Bank teller training also covers special services, such as redeeming U.S. Savings Bonds, taking coin orders and issuing bank-certified checks or traveler's checks. Tellers learn to make out money orders, take utility and loan payments, issue license plate stickers and provide customer access to safe deposit boxes. They might be trained to assist in sales initiatives geared toward finding customers interested in investments, loans and credit cards.

Career Duties

A teller's daily tasks include setting up a cash drawer, counting cash, taking deposits and making withdrawals. They file deposit slips and other paperwork, sort checks, handle correspondence and balance accounts. They might need to be proficient with spreadsheets and online teller systems.

Most full-time bank tellers spend 35-40 hours a week at terminals, working face-to-face with clients. Since they provide a direct interface between a bank and its customers, they must know how to handle complaints in a courteous and professional manner. Some might work at drive-up windows or as ATM attendants. Those who have seniority, superior performance records and, in some cases, college degrees might advance to positions such as head teller, supervisor, loan officer or branch manager.

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