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San Francisco State University
1600 Holloway Avenue
San Francisco, California 94132

Routes to Single Subject Matter Credentials in the Geosciences

Background
California teaching credential candidates are required by law to verify their subject matter knowledge and competencies and are provided two alternative paths for fulfilling this requirement. One way is to complete a program of subject matter preparation approved by the California Commission on Teacher Credentialing. The second pathway requires post-baccalaureate coursework and provides the teacher with a specialized, limited credential. In either case, students may opt NOT to obtain certification via coursework, but may elect to pass the CSET subject matter examinations.

The subject matter preparation for Geosciences involves the completion of SFSU's BS in Geology degree requirements plus six additional "science breadth" courses (14 additional units) or SFSU's BA in Geology degree plus an additional 23 units. The specialized credential in Geosciences requires advanced coursework in geosciences*, but does not require the "breadth" courses. Students who feel that the course requirements are onerous should consider electing the examination methods [Single Subject Science: Geosciences or Geosciences (Specialized) ]. The requirements for each method are listed below. The College of Education maintains a web site with information on the single subject teaching credential program.

Please note that the requirements for single subject competency have been established by the CCTC, not by the Department of Geosciences. We simply certify that you've met their requirements. Students who feel that the course requirement is onerous might consider taking the exams. Once an exam is passed, it does not have to be retaken, even if another exam is not passed at the same time.

Approved Subject Matter Competency Program Form

The Certification of Subject Matter form is used to document a student's certification or provisional certification of subject matter competency.

Single Subject Credential in Science: Concentration in Geosciences

Certification by Approved Subject Matter Competency Program (Coursework)

Lower Division "Breadth" Reqirements

Upper Division "Depth" Requirements

*Lower division non-majors introductory courses in meteorology and oceanography may NOT be used to satisfy this requirement. The state standards mandate that only courses with comparable level of treatment, upper division designation and units may be substituted. Other courses at San Francisco State that may be used to fulfill this requirement UNDER ADVISEMENT include Metr 401 (4 units, Lec/Lab) OR a combination of Metr 301 (1 Unit-Lab) and Metr 302 (3 Units-Lec). Please contact John Caskey before making any unilateral substitutions of courses for the subject matter curriculum above.

Subject Competency Certification in Single Subject Science: Concentration in Geosciences by Examination

Individuals who choose to satisfy the subject matter requirement by the examination option must obtain passing scores (220 out of 300) on CSET science subtests I (#118) and II (#119) and the CSET Earth and Planetary subtest III test (#122). The official CSET Web site, which includes test guides, internet registration, and, as available, more information on the CSET: Science Subtests, can be found at www.cset.nesinc.com.

The appropriate CSETexams are:

Single Subject Credential in Science: Concentration in Geosciences

The California Subject Examinations for Teachers/Single Subject Assessments for Teaching (CSET/SSAT) organization maintains the CSET web site that includes exam dates, contents, and sample questions. The CTC also maintains a web site with information about these exams, including the current examination schedule, at www.ctc.ca.gov/profserv/examinfo/singlesubject.html

Single Subject Credential in Geosciences (Specialized)

Certification by Approved Subject Matter Competency Program (Coursework)

The California Commission on Teacher Credentialing has approved a new, specialized and limited credential in Geosciences. It is titled "Single Subject Credential in Geosciences (Specialized)." Teaching certification would be only for that discipline. That is, the person would not be able to teach general science, integrated science, or introductory science.

The two subject-matter coursework options are:

a. Completion of a post-baccalaureate degree from a regionally-accredited institution in the requested area, or in a closely related area;

b. Completion of a baccalaureate degree and 30 semester-units or 45 quarter-units of postgraduate coursework in the science area requested, or in a closely related area deemed equivalent. The coursework should be taken under advisement and consist of graduate and undergraduate majors level coursework. The degree and postgraduate coursework must be from a regionally-accredited institution, and each course applicable to the science area requested shall have a grade of "B" or better, "pass," or "credit."

Finally, the CTC has final judgment on whether the student has met subject matter competency. The transcripts and an explanatory letter requesting the review and explaining the courses chosen must be submitted to make sure that the person has met the competency requirements.

The letter and supporting materials will be submitted under University letterhead by the Single Subject Advisor to:

Commission on Teacher Credentialing
Box 944270
Sacramento CA, 94244
ATTN: SPECIALIZED SCIENCE REVIEW

The "closely related areas and degrees" are: Earth Sciences, Astronomy, Cosmology, Geology, Meteorology, Paleontology, Oceanography, Hydrology, Physical-Geoscience, Atmospheric Science, Climatology, Conservation, Geophysics, Marine Science, Mineralogy, Soil Science.

Subject Competency Certification in Single Subject Geosciences (Specialized) by Examination

Individuals who choose to satisfy the subject matter requirement by the examination option must obtain passing scores (220 out of 300) on CSET science subtests III (122) and IV (126). The official CSET Web site, which includes test guides, internet registration, and, as available, more information on the CSET: Science Subtests, can be found at www.cset.nesinc.com.

The appropriate CSETexams are:

Single Subject Credential in Geosciences (Specialized)

For further information about this new credential and the subject matter requirements, see CCTC Coded Correspondence 03-0010. The California Subject Examinations for Teachers/Single Subject Assessments for Teaching (CSET/SSAT) organization maintains the CSET web site that includes exam dates, contents, and sample questions. The CTC also maintains a web site with information about these exams, including the current examination schedule, at www.ctc.ca.gov/profserv/examinfo/singlesubject.html

Supplementary Authorization

If you are a holder of a Single Subject, Standard Secondary, or Special Secondary Teaching Credential, you may have "Geosciences" added to your credential as a supplementary authorization by meeting the following requirement: 20 semester units (including at least 10 upper division semester units) of non-remedial course work in geology or, for specialized credentials, meteorology, oceanography or astronomy, completed at a regionally accredited community college, college, or university. A grade of "C" or higher is required in every course used to meet this requirement.

Advisor for Science Subject Matter Competency in Geosciences

Prof. John Caskey.
Department of Geosciences
TH 616
415 405 0353
e-mail: caskey@sfsu.edu
John Monteverdi / montever@sfsu.edu / revised 11/2/04/Adapted from original by Ray Trautman for Department of Chemistry