California Alternative Certification Programs

(found programs from 65 schools)

According to the California Teachers Association, the Center for the Future of Teaching and Learning predicts that about 10,000 additional teachers will be needed in California over the next decade. The state is experiencing teacher shortages in both core and extra-curricular subjects, including math, computer science, foreign languages, the life and physical sciences, special education, agriculture, and business education. Data compiled by the National Center for Alternative Education shows that California hires approximately 20,000 new teachers every year, and of these new teachers, as many as 40 percent of them - over 8,000 per year - enter the profession through non-traditional routes.

California has several alternative certification options. While each program has different requirements, each state-approved program requires that candidates already possess a bachelor's degree, as well as earn passing scores on the California Subject Examinations for Teachers (CSET), meet basic skills requirements, and complete a computer education and U.S. Constitution course.

Two programs you may consider are the California Teacher Corps program or the Peace Corps Teaching Experience. The California Teacher Corps program is designed for individuals who have already established themselves professionally. This is a highly selective program that provides rigorous training both before entering the classroom and during the first year of teaching. The Peace Corps Teaching Experience is designed for individuals who have served in the Peace Corps and who spent at least 18 months teaching resident students of a foreign country. In order to qualify, 50 percent or more of regular duties must have consisted of classroom teaching. Qualifying individuals may fill out the appropriate forms to waive traditional teacher preparation and receive a preliminary teaching credential.

Take the Alternative Route to California Teacher Certification

If you already have your bachelor’s degree and want to move into the field of education, consider California Alternative Teacher Certification program. Most programs are designed to tackle many of the same learning goals and outcomes as any other type of teacher certification program. One of the primary goals of statewide alternative certification programs is to give you the knowledge necessary to pass the California Subject Examinations for Teachers; as a result, programs address your subject area, your teaching abilities, and your writing skills. You may also be expected to become familiar with the teaching field in California and what it is like to work as a teacher in your chosen area. Due to the long-term teacher shortage, programs hope to graduate students that are prepared to stay in the field for years to come.

Whether your classroom is full of gifted students, students with unique needs, or a mix of the two, alternative California teaching certification programs hope to embody you with the ability to make subject matter accessible to all students. To know if you are making subjects accessible to your students, you must also be able to assess students' performance. Programs strive to make sure that teachers are self-aware; it's important to be able to look at your own techniques and tweak them to suit students' needs.


Schools in California:

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