Students learn how to become a teacher

Project Manager Margaret Dominguez and Counselor Angela Serrano of the Making Accessible and Effective Systems for Teacher Readiness Outcomes Project, more commonly known as the MAESTROs Project, hosted an information session on March 23, with steps to become a teacher and recommendations for undergraduate students interested in the field. 

Both Dominguez and Serrano spoke about the need for students interested in going into teaching to know they should follow these few steps to guarantee a successful start in their future academic ventures:

  • Inform your advisor about your career goal 
  • Keep your grades up and aim for Bs or higher!
  • Service Learning hours with youth (Keep track of your hours’ log, course description, grade, etc.)
  • Make connections with professors/mentors
  • Attend workshops that will support your professional development
  • Engage with other future educators 

For undergraduate students in Liberal Studies wanting to teach K-6, they recommend first completing a bachelor’s degree in the major and applying to a one to four-year credential program. 

Those wanting to teach a single subject (math, science, history, Spanish, English, etc.) for middle or high school must first complete the bachelor’s degree in the major and a one-year credential program. 

Other majors leading to either teaching in K-6 or special education should also complete the bachelor’s degree in the major and a one-year credential program in addition to a multiple subject California Subject Examinations for Teachers (CSET).

According to Dominguez and Serrano, to enter into a credential program, aspiring educators must first take the California Basic Educational Skills Test (CBEST) and CSET, as they are both required before applying. They also highlight the following minimum requirements needed for teaching in California:

  • BA degree with 2.67+ GPA
  • Valid TB clearance
  • Recommendation Letters
  • US Constitution Course
  • 45 hours with youth
  • Certificate of Clearance
  • First Aid and CPR Certificate 

The CBEST is a test that assesses skills in reading, mathematics, and writing in English. The test is a requirement for earning a teaching credential or the ability to work as a substitute teacher if passed. The trial is free for California residents but will cost $30 per section if otherwise.

The CSET is used to assess a specific subject matter. The test differs in price for different subject materials, but those in the following major have it waived:

  • Liberal Studies – multiple subject major
  • Math Subject Matter major
  • Humanities and Communications – English subject matter major
  • Social and Behavioral Science – history major
  • Japanese major
  • Spanish major
  • Science major

If accepted into a credential program, an edTPA (teaching performance assessment) will be assigned to train future educators for preparation in the classroom. The Reading Instruction Competence Assessment is an exam given to prospective multiple-subject teachers in K-6 meant to test reading and writing skills.

For more information about the teaching process or general information, contact [email protected] or through their Instagram @csumb_maestros

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