General Program Information
Applying to the Program
Private School Teachers
Preliminary Credential Requirements
General Program Information
What kind of credential will I have when I complete the program?
CalStateTEACH prepares candidates for a Preliminary Multiple Subject Credential. This credential qualifies you to teach in self-contained general education classrooms in California.
What if I want to teach in another state?
For information on reciprocity with other states, go to the Commission on Teacher Credentialing website http://www.ctc.ca.gov and use the search option.
What if I want to get a secondary credential?If you hold a valid Multiple Subject credential, you can add a Single Subject credential by passing the appropriate California Subject Examinations for Teachers (CSET) and taking one methods class in the teaching of that subject matter. For instance, if you want to add an English Single Subject Credential, you would need to pass the English CSET and take a methods course in Teaching English. You may check with your regional center for options on where to take this required course.
Can I teach middle school with a Multiple Subject Credential?
Yes, if you are teaching two subjects or more, you can teach in a middle school classroom. If you are teaching one subject area you need to have 32 semester hours in that subject area and obtain a Subject Matter Authorization. For more detailed information go to http://www.ctc.ca.gov/credentials/manuals.html and click on the link titled Supplementary Authorization Guideline Book. Contact your Regional Center for information on applying for a Subject Matter Authorization.
Do I need to have a teaching job to be in CalStateTEACH?
You do not need a teaching job to participate in the program. The CalStateTEACH curriculum is integrated with in-class activities, so clinical experience is an essential component of the program. If you are not already teaching or plan to teach as an Intern, you can enroll in the Student Teaching Option.
Can I live anywhere and participate in CalStateTEACH?
You may live anywhere in the state of California. If you live outside California or in a country other than the United States it might also be possible for you to participate in the program. Contact your regional center for more information.
How many academic credits do I earn?
If I have already taken some courses toward my credential, can I transfer them to CalStateTEACH?
The CalStateTEACH has a spiraling integrated curriculum. Each term you will register for academic work and a clinical experience. Upon successful completion of the program, you will have earned at least 45 semester units of credit from the California State University. Twelve of these units are for intern or student teaching, observation, and application in the classroom. Thirty-three units are devoted to the regular multiple subject credential coursework, including working with English learners, special populations and technology curricula.
Because of the unique integrated structure of CalStateTEACH, to become fully prepared as a Multiple Subject teacher, you will need to complete the program in its entirety. Although it will not be possible to transfer units from other programs, your knowledge from prior coursework will make it much easier to meet some CalStateTEACH requirements.
How can I be sure that CalStateTEACH is a good credential program?
High standards for teacher preparation are a top priority for the California State University. This program meets the same accreditation standards and review as all other programs in California. It is accredited by WASC (Western Association of Schools and Colleges) and approved by the CCTC (California Commission on Teacher Credentialing). CalStateTEACH was developed by over thirty of the top teacher-education and subject matter faculty in the CSU. In addition, the program has been guided by consultation with and review by many other CSU professors and K-12 colleagues. The program has also received high marks from graduates and principals who hire CalStateTEACH teacher candidates. It is an Apple Distinguished Program.
Will the program help me become a better teacher?
Yes! Because teachers enter the classroom with a good foundation in subject matter and content, the focus of this program is on helping you teach the content you already know. You will learn successful strategies for teaching and engaging students in reading, mathematics, social studies, science, and other subjects taught in elementary schools. You will learn how to manage students in the classroom; how to build partnerships with parents; how to accommodate wide-ranging ability levels within the same classroom; how to assist students whose primary language is not English; and how to face the other challenges that emerge in the elementary school classroom. Many program assignments integrate teaching theory with hands-on experience in the classroom. In addition, you will be observed and evaluated by your assigned faculty during personal visits to the school in each term.
How much does CalStateTEACH cost?
Please see our Costs page for information on CalStateTEACH university and materials fees.
I need to enroll in the split Term 1 and take the CSET course. Does it cost more for the split term?
Yes, candidates in the 30-week split term one will pay for the additional instruction provided over the longer time period. Please see our Costs page for information on CalStateTEACH university and materials fees.
I just moved to California. Do I have to pay nonresident tuition?
According to California Education Code, Section 68017, "A 'resident' is a student who has residence, pursuant to...Section 68060...in the state for more than one year immediately preceding the residence determination date." Exceptions to the general residence requirements are contained in California Education Code sections 68070-68084 and California Code of Regulations, Title 5, Subchapter 5, Article 4, sections 41906-41906.5, and include, but are not limited to, members of the military and their dependents, certain credentialed employees of school districts and most students who have attended three years of high school in California and graduated or attained the equivalent. Whether an exception applies to a particular student cannot be determined before the submission of an application for admission and, as necessary, additional supporting documentation. Because neither campus nor Chancellor's Office staff may give advice on the application of these laws, applicants are strongly urged to review the material for themselves and consult with a legal advisor.
Is financial aid available?
Candidates in the CalStateTEACH program are eligible for federal loans and may be eligible for federal Pell Grants or State University Grants. If you are interested in applying for grants or loans, complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). See the Costs section for more information.
Are there any loan assumption programs available?
There are many opportunities available for teachers and those earning a teaching credential to have their loans assumed or forgiven. See the APLE program or these other Loan Cancellation Resources for more information.
I applied for federal financial aid this year for another college. Do I need to apply again?
You will need to add the new federal school code for the CalStateTEACH regional campus to your FAFSA. Go to the FAFSA website to add the new number.
This year I filed a FAFSA, but I want to start your program next year. Do I need a new FAFSA?
You will need to complete a Renewal FAFSA for the next year.
Applying to the Program
Can I get a "hard copy" application to file for the CalStateTEACH program?
No, applications for the program are accepted only online. This website links to the online application.
Do I have to wait until I have all of my documentation before I submit my online application?
No, you may submit your online application prior to sending in your documentation. However, your application will not be reviewed until your documentation is received by the appropriate Regional Center.
Is there a fee to apply to CalStateTEACH?
Yes, there is a non-refundable $55 application fee.
Is it possible to waive the application fee?
The application fee may be waived for a limited number of applicants from low-income families for whom payment would be an undue financial hardship. If you believe that you qualify, complete the Application Fee Waiver Request on the online application. The fee waiver is based on a formula determined by the CSU Chancellor's office.
Do I have to pay the application fee at the same time that I submit the online application?
You may pay the fee by credit card online or send a check later. Your application will not be processed until the fee is paid.
If I am not eligible for the program, can I get my application fee back?
No, the application fee is not refundable.
If I am accepted and then decide to enter the program later, can my application be transferred to the new term?
You will not need to submit new documents, but you must pay the $55 application fee for any term in which you wish to be admitted, whether or not you have been admitted to a previous term.
Do I have to use my social security number on the online application?
It is not required, but your application cannot be processed until it arrives. If you are not comfortable sending it over the Internet, call your regional center during business hours and provide this information. You will not be able to obtain a CalStateTEACH email address without the number.
My grades do not meet the stated program entrance requirements. Am I eligible for admission?
The program may admit candidates (up to 15%) who do not meet the minimum GPA or other requirements, but otherwise show exceptional promise. You may be eligible for this special admission status if there are compensating factors in your professional background. Passage of the CSET is a strong indicator of success, so this will help your application significantly. If you do have a GPA below the minimum, you must submit a Petition for Exceptional Admission along with your documentation.
What are my options for meeting the Basic Skills Requirement?
You have three options for demonstrating Basic Skills: (1) Pass the CBEST, (2) Pass the CSET plus Writing Skills examination, or (3) Pass the CSU Early Assessment Program or the CSU Placement Examinations. For more detailed information, to http://www.ctc.ca.gov/credentials/leaflets.html and click on the leaflet titled "Basic Skills Requirement".
My CBEST results will not be available until a month before the program begins. Can I still apply?
If you are using CBEST for your basic skills requirement you must show proof of having passed CBEST to apply.
I can be admitted as long as I file my application before the late deadline, right?
The application AND all of your supporting documents must arrive before the deadline.
Can I apply before I finish my bachelor's degree? Can I start the program if I will complete my bachelor's degree right after the program begins?
You can apply for admission before you complete your degree. However, you must submit an official transcript indicating you have qualified senior standing. Once you complete the degree, you'll need to submit another official transcript. You will enter in the Student Teaching Option, as you will not be able to take a paid teaching position in a public school until you have completed your degree.
Do I have to be a Liberal Studies Major?
No, you must have completed a baccalaureate or higher degree, except in professional education, from a regionally accredited college or university. Any other major is acceptable.
All of my college work is shown on the transcript for the university from which I graduated. Do I need to submit the other transcripts?
Yes. In order to complete the admission process you must still submit official transcripts from all colleges and universities you have attended.
I graduated from a university in another country. Can I still be admitted to the program?
If you completed college or university work at an institution in a country other than the United States, you must obtain a complete evaluation of your transcript(s) by an organization approved by the Commission on Teacher Credentialing. For a list of approved organizations, go to http://www.ctc.ca.gov/credentials/leaflets.html and click on the leaflet titled Foreign Transcript Evaluation.
Is there anything I should do before the program begins?
Prerequisite Coursework and CSET Preparation
If you have not yet passed the CSET, you are not considered subject matter qualified. Your best preparation for the program is to prepare and pass the CSET.
You may also want to complete the US Constitution requirement, if you have not yet done so. This can be done by either completing a course (two semester units or three quarter units) in the provisions and principles of the US Constitution, or by passing an examination at a regionally accredited college or university or county office of education.
What is the difference between the Intern Option, the Private School Teacher Option and the Student Teaching Option?
It you are the teacher of record in an appropriate classroom in a public school, you will participate in the Intern Option. If you are a contracted teacher in an accredited private school, you will participate in the private school teacher option. If you do not have a job as a teacher of record, you will participate in the Student Teaching Option.
What if I begin in the Student Teaching Option and then get a job?
You would then switch over to the Intern or Private School Teacher Option. It is possible to switch to options at any time during the program once you have completed modules 1, 2, 3, and 4 in Term 1 and have been supervised in the classroom by an approved CalStateTEACH faculty member for 160 hours.
I teach 3 1/2 hours per day in the same classroom. Can I participate in the Employed Teacher Option?
You are eligible for this option if you teach in a multiple subject setting at least 15 to18 hours per week in the same classroom.
I am a substitute teacher with a 30-day permit. Can I participate in the Employed Teacher Option?
No, short-term substitutes cannot participate in the Employed Teacher Option.
I am teaching as a long-term substitute for one semester. Can I participate in the Employed Teacher Option?
Assuming that you meet all other requirements, you may enter CalStateTEACH if you have been promised at least one semester as a long-term substitute. Remember, to be a long-term substitute in a public school, a teacher would be required to be employed on an emergency long-term permit. A substitute position in which the teacher is employed on a 30-day sub permit would not qualify. Your district will be required to offer a STP (Short Term Staff Permit) or a PIP (Multiple Subject Provisional Internship Permit). These are non-renewable and as used to bridge the time it takes to become part of a credential program and complete the CSET.
I am teaching multiple subjects to a class of special education children. Can I use this for my field experience?
No. CalStateTEACH requires that you teach in a general education classroom.
I teach a class that is half general education students and half mainstreamed special education students. Can I participate in the Employed Teacher Option?
As long as the setting in which you teach requires a multiple subject credential, you will qualify. Your Regional Director and faculty will review your particular situation to make a determination.
I work for a private council that teaches children at home. Can I participate in the Employed Teacher Option?
No. You must teach in a school setting. You may participate in the Student Teaching option and complete your field placement in a public school setting.
I teach kindergarten children in an informal extended day setting for a public school. Can I be considered for the Employed Teacher Option?
You will not qualify unless the position requires a multiple subject credential. Informal education in an after-hours program is not acceptable for the Employed Teacher Option.
I am teaching in a middle school. I teach history/social science in the morning and math/science in the afternoon. Am I eligible for the Employed Teacher Option?
As long as you are teaching all of these subjects in a self-contained classroom, in a position that requires a multiple subject credential, you may be considered. If you are teaching only two of the four core curriculum subjects, you may participate if you will be allowed to teach the other subjects as needed to meet the requirements of the program. We will need a letter from your principal verifying the arrangements.
If I am in the Student Teaching Option, do I need to find my own placement?
No, the program is responsible for finding an appropriate placement. You may request a specific school, but the program makes the final decision.
Can I use subbing for my fieldwork experience in the Student Teaching Option?
Subbing alone does not fulfill the fieldwork component and is not recognized by the CTC in relation to field participation, which must be completed in the same classroom over an extended period of time and supervised by university faculty. CalStateTEACH integrates the theory of teaching with practice in the classroom on a daily basis. In order to complete the assignments, you must have sustained contact over time with the same students. When you are a sub, there is no continuity and no guarantee that you will be in the same classroom for the extended periods of time required to successfully complete activities and assignments related to students' learning and growth.
In some cases, subbing on a limited basis can be completed in addition to fulfilling your fieldwork assignment if you are in the Student Teaching Option. However, the plan must be reviewed by your Regional Director and will be approved on an individual basis.
How many hours am I required to be in the classroom for the Student Teaching Option?
Each Term has minimum requirements for the amount of time required in a classroom. Term 1 is two days per week, Term 2 is Initial Student Teaching, 5 half days per week, and term 3 is full time for a minimum of 10 weeks.
Where do I get my textbooks?
All materials are provided to program candidates at the beginning of the program through electronic codes.
Do I need to have a computer to participate in CalStateTEACH?
Yes, since the support system for this program is web-based, you must have ready access to either a Macintosh or PC computer that is connected to the Internet. See Technical Requirements for information concerning the specifications for your computer and related equipment.
What if my computer skills are limited?
You will need to have a general understanding of computer use, email, word processing, and the Internet. However you do not need to be a computer wizard. Since even the most sophisticated computer users occasionally experience obstacles or problems, CalStateTEACH maintains a Help System accessible by submitting an online help ticket. The Help system will assist you with any problems you may have with the CalStateTEACH course website or the software required in the program.
What effect does an economic downturn have on the availability of jobs for teachers?
The economy has a significant effect. When times are good, some teachers leave the profession to earn more money elsewhere. Teachers may retire at an earlier age. A weak economy improves retention of credentialed teachers as the fixed income and tenure of the teaching profession becomes more attractive. Older teachers may delay retirement as they seek the security of a higher retirement income. This means fewer jobs for teachers.
Will there really be teaching jobs in the future?
Click here to view this message from Jack O'Connell, State Superintendent of Public Instruction regarding five factors that will create huge teacher shortages in the state of California.
If I am in the intern option, do I need an Intern credential?
If you are the teacher of record in a public school multiple subject classroom, you must apply for an Intern Credential. If you are in a private school, you will not be considered an Intern, and will not apply for an Intern Credential.
Are there special requirements for the CalStateTEACH Intern Credential?
In addition to being a public school teacher and having a passing score on the CSET, you must also meet the U.S. Constitution requirement. If you are a graduate of a CSU campus, you have probably already met this requirement. If you graduated elsewhere, you may have met the requirement if you have evidence of satisfactory completion of two semester units of work on the provisions and principles of the U.S. Constitution. An introductory course in Political Science taken at a California university or community college should meet the requirement. If you have not completed the coursework, passage of the U.S. Constitution Test will be necessary. This exam is available through extended education programs on CSU campuses, community colleges and designated county offices of education. Check with your Regional Center for more information.
Are there any benefits to being a CalStateTEACH Intern?
Yes! Many school districts have separate pay schedules for emergency and credentialed teachers. An intern credential provides many benefits that a regular credentialed teacher is accorded.
Do I need an intern credential if I am working in a private school?
No, intern credentials are only for public school teachers.
Do you accept private school teachers?
Private School Teachers
A private school teacher may participate in CalStateTEACH. You do not apply for the CalStateTEACH Intern Credential at any time during the program.
Are there special requirements for private school teachers?
California generally requires that teacher candidates obtain substantial experience teaching in a public school to qualify for a credential. To be recommended for a credential by a university, all private school teachers are required to complete a substantive experience in a public school.
Visit www.ctc.ca.gov/credentials/leaflets/cl834.html to review the Commission on Teacher Credentialing regulations concerning private school teaching experience requirements and the direct application process. This requirement is normally met by spending a five-week summer session as a student teacher in a public school. You must be enrolled in CalStateTEACH to participate.
Why are private school teachers required to obtain a Certificate of Clearance?
All CalStateTEACH candidates must have a valid emergency permit, or intern credential or a Certificate of Clearance when they start the program. This is a requirement for all California credential programs. Since private school teachers do not need permits or certificates to teach, they must have the Certificate of Clearance. You will receive information about the application process after you are admitted. The process requires that you be fingerprinted by Live Scan process and return all complete forms to your Regional Center. Private school teachers who have a valid emergency 30-day permit to teach as a substitute in a public school are exempted from this requirement. The private school fingerprinting process does not satisfy this requirement.
Can the three-year private school teaching requirement be waived with experience from another region of the country?
Yes, but it must be acquired at a school with regional accreditation. The Western Association of Schools and Colleges (WASC) is one of six regional accrediting associations in the United States. The Western region covers schools in California, Hawaii, Guam, and American Samoa. Other regions are:
If my private school experience meets the requirements, do I have to have three years before starting CalStateTEACH?
- Middle States Association of Colleges and Schools
- New England Association of Colleges and Schools
- North Central Association of Colleges and Schools
- Northwest Association of Schools and Colleges
- Southern Association of Colleges and Schools
The three years must be acquired before you apply for a credential. Since CalStateTEACH requires a minimum of 12 months, you should already have at least 24 months experience when you begin term one. For more information, go to http://www.ctc.ca.gov/credentials/CREDS/elementary.html and click on the link titled Requirements for Teachers with Private School Experience.
I taught one year in a public school and two years in a private school. Both schools were accredited. Can I qualify?
No. You must have three years in a private school. Public school teaching does not qualify. However, public school teaching that was part of a Multiple Subject Credential program that was supervised by university faculty may qualify to meet the public school requirement.
I heard that a private school teacher with six years of experience can get a credential without completing a teacher credentialing program. Is this true?
Senate Bill 57 (Scott), Education Code 44259.2 (a) makes such a provision to teachers who meet specific qualifications. For more details, go to http://www.ctc.ca.gov/credentials/CREDS/elementary.html and click on the link titled "Requirements for Teachers with Private School Experience". Please be aware that if you choose this option the CCTC requires you to apply directly to the Commission for your credential and not to be recommended by CalStateTEACH.
What does it mean to be "subject matter qualified?"
Persons seeking a California Multiple Subject Credential must demonstrate their knowledge of the subjects commonly taught in an elementary classroom. This demonstration of subject matter knowledge is met by passing the Multiple Subject CSET examination which is divided into three sections: Science and Mathematics; Language Arts and History; Fine Arts, Physical Education and Human Development. See the CSET website for more information.
What are my chances of passing CSET?
The CSET exam passing data indicate that 60% of test takers pass the CSET. However, CalStateTEACH candidates who successfully complete the preparation course for the CSET have an 85%+ pass rate.
What services are available to help me pass CSET?
If you have not yet passed the CSET, you are not considered subject matter qualified. You can enroll in the 30-week split Term One and CSET preparation course. A CalStateTEACH faculty will work with you to assess your strengths and weaknesses, provide test content information, and general test preparation assistance. Your active participation in the CSET preparation course will be instrumental in passing the CSET. The course is offered on a credit/no credit basis during term 1A and if necessary term 1B. This provides you with the time needed to complete your regular CalStateTEACH assignments and study for the CSET.
How can I register for the CSET?
You can register for CSET via the Internet at www.cset.nesinc.com. Information about completing the registration process is available on the website.
What is RICA?
California requires that candidates for the Preliminary Multiple Subject Credential pass the Reading Instruction Competence Assessment (RICA). The purpose of the RICA is to ensure that teachers possess the knowledge and skills important for the provision of effective reading instruction to students. Candidates should know that the reading instruction provided by CalStateTEACH is essential in passing RICA. The test is taken toward the end of term three. Visit www.rica.nesinc.com or www.ctc.ca.gov for more information.
Preliminary Credential Requirements
Are there any other requirements I must meet to get my credential after I complete the program?
Yes, in order to apply for your Preliminary Multiple Subject Credential you will need to provide proof of:
- Passing Score on the RICA
- CPR Certification
- U.S. Constitution requirement
These requirements are in addition to completing the program with GPA of at least 3.0.
Note: Your Preliminary Credential is valid for five years. Before it expires, you will need to complete the requirements for a Clear Credential. For detailed information regarding the State of California requirements concerning Clear Credentials, please download the following coded correspondence from the California Commission on Teaching Credentialing (CCTC): www.ctc.ca.gov/notices/coded/030017/030017.pdf.
If I'm enrolled and start having problems in my studies, to whom do I turn for help?
Your main source of support is your one-on-one connection with your assigned CSU faculty member who will be available at your school site or Regional Center, or by phone, fax, or e-mail. Additionally, you will be connected electronically to the members of your teacher cohort who can serve as a valuable resource and support network. If you need assistance beyond these two resources, you can call or email your Regional Center.
What if I need to drop out of the program for a period of time?
If you are in good standing and need to stop out, you can request a leave of absence from the program. CalStateTEACH students may be granted leaves of absence, up to two consecutive semesters. However, a leave granted by the university does not exempt the credential candidate from new requirements imposed by the State of California. The intent of the policy is to permit a student to suspend his or her academic work and later resume studies with a minimum of procedural difficulty. A student who is approved for a planned leave will be considered a continuing CalStateTEACH student upon re-enrollment. Grounds for approval of a leave must document the serious and compelling reason for the request. Reasons may include the following: illness or disability or similar personal circumstances including pregnancy; activities which enhance a student's professional career objectives; active duty in the armed forces; and other reasons at the discretion of the Regional Director.