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Department of Education

Frequently Asked Questions About the HSU Credential Programs

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When are orientation meetings for students interested in applying?

Dates for the secondary education, elementary education, and special education orientation meetings can be found here. If you are unable to attend, please contact the coordinator for the credential program you are interested in for more information.

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What are the School of Education's Office hours? Which days is the office closed?

During the school year, The School of Education's main office is open from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m., Monday through Friday. As we are more short-staffed during the summer months, we will still be open from 8 to 5, Monday-Friday, however we may close the office down for lunch and for meetings times. Faculty and Staff mailboxes are located in HGH 211.

Due to campus holidays , we will be closed the following days in the 2011-2012 Academic Year:

  • Monday, Sept. 5, 2011 - Labor Day
  • Friday. Nov. 11, 2011 - Veterans' Day
  • Thursday, Nov. 24, 2011 - Thanksgiving Day
  • Friday, Nov. 25, 2011 - Day after Thanksgiving
  • Monday, Dec. 26, 2011 - Christmas Day Observed
  • Wednesday. Dec. 28, 2011 - Columbus Day Observed
  • Thursday, Dec. 29, 2011 - Lincoln's Birthday Observed
  • Friday, Dec. 30, 2011 - Washington's Birthday Observed
  • Monday, Jan. 2, 2011 - New Year's Day Observed
  • Monday, Jan. 16, 2012 - Martin Luther King Jr. Day
  • Friday, Mar. 30, 2012 - Cesar Chavez Day
  • Monday, May 28, 2012 - Memorial Day

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When are applications available and due?

Ordinarily, applications are available in September and due February 15 (or until cohorts are filled) for admission the following fall for Secondary and Elementary Education. Special Education has rolling admissions, and you can apply later than that if needed. Please contact the Special Education Coordinator's Assistant for further details at 707.826.3729. Please note: we do not accept new students for spring semester as coursework must be completed sequentially. New students are admitted fall semester only.

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How much is tuition?

Currently HSU tuition for a teacher credential program is $7960 per year for California residents for the 2011-2012 academic year (this is subject to change, depending on the university's budget). This cost can very from year to year and semester to semester. Please see the Financial Aid's cost estimates for the most up-to-date information.

For out-of-state applicants, please keep in mind that you cannot use the WUE (Western Undergraduate Exchange) tuition price break as you will be considered a post-baccalaureate or graduate student to be in a credential program.

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What scholarships are available?

Our scholarship webpage is located here. The School of Education offers several scholarships for credential candidates. Please see our scholarship page for the list of scholarships, their requirements, and their applications. Scholarships can vary from year to year, so please check back in the spring before you enter the credential program to receive the most up-to-date information. Special Education Candidates: scholarship recipients will be announced during fall semester.

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What is the minimum length of the program?

Our elementary (multiple subject), secondary (single subject), and Special Education preliminary credential programs are two-semester programs. They begin in mid-August and end in mid-June. Please note: credential programs start BEFORE the regular HSU semester and end later. The Special Education Clear Credential program and the Administrative Services program offer a flexible length of program.

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When can I begin a basic credential program?

All of our basic credential programs (elementary, secondary, special education) begin every fall semester (no new admissions for spring semester). Administrative Services and Special Education Clear Credential programs begin fall semester of alternate years. We cannot accept new students for spring semester as credential program coursework must be completed sequentially.

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Can I earn my teaching credential and be in the Master's Program at the same time?

No. Generally speaking, to enter one of our Master's programs, you need to have already earned your teaching credential. If you want to become a teacher and already have your bachelor's degree, you would want to follow one of our post-graduate credential paths, then afterwards you can begin to pursue your Master's in Education, if you so desire.

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What are the prerequisites for the credential programs?

Elementary, secondary, and special education programs have a preliminary education technology requirement. This requirement can be met by one of three options: (1) passing grade in EDUC 285 or an equivalent course, (2) pass the CSET for Preliminary Education Technology (or an approved equivalent, such as the Technology Exam at San Jose State), (3) complete a computer information systems major or minor.

Each program requires you to obtain a Certificate of Clearance from the California Commission on Teacher Credentialing. This includes Live Scan fingerprinting and and a background check. (See the application for the program of your choice for detailed instructions on how to apply for a Certificate of Clearance.)

All students in the credential programs must hold current certification in Adult, Infant, Child CPR (click on link for more information). CPR certification must be kept current through the entire school year, and online CPR courses are not acceptable.

The California Commission on Teacher Credentialing requires that teacher candidates have taken or tested out of a course on the US Constitution. HSU graduates and those who have a degree from a university in the CSU system will likely have completed this. For all others, please verify on your transcripts that you have completed this coursework. For more information, please contact the coordinator for the program you are interested in.

Elementary, Secondary, and Special Education all require that you have observed for 45 or more hours in a credentialed teacher's classroom in a grade level that is applicable to the program you are interested in. You can arrange for your own placement through a local school or complete this requirement through coursework at a university (EED 210/310 for elementary grades or SED 210/410 for secondary grades).

Please also see each program's application for additional specific requirements including required tests.

Elementary Education has a pre or corequisite: Health and Physical Education Curriculum in the Elementary School. This can be met as a prerequisite by taking both KINS 475 and HED 405, or as a corequisite by taking EED 741: Health and Physical Education Curriculum during the fall semester of the credential year.

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Do you offer CSET Test Preparation Workshops?

Yes, we do offer test prep workshops for the Multiple Subjects CSET -- the test needed for either Elementary or Special Education. Here are the upcoming dates:

Dates: Saturday, February 4th or Saturday, March 3rd Time: 9:30a.m. - 1:00 p.m. Place: Harry Griffith Hall, room 106

Test prep workshops are FREE and are especially helpful for those who have difficulty with Science and/or Math. To sign up for a test prep workshop, contact workshop instructor Kevin Bean (click on name to email) or phone SPED Coordinator Peggy Kirkpatrick at 826-5795.

We generally do not offer test prep workshops for any of the Single Subject CSET Exams.

The CSET official website has test guides and practice questions that are helpful. They give a breakdown of what to expect on each subtest.

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What if I have a criminal conviction on my background check, can I still teach?

That depends on the sort of crime you were convicted of. To find out for sure whether or not your background would disqualify you from teaching, please contact the appropriate program's coordinator ASAP for advice. For Elementary Education contact Bryn Coriell at 707.826.5108. For Secondary Education, contact Anna Thaler Petersen at 707.826.5870. For Special Education, contact Peggy Kirkpatrick at 707.826.5795.

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I already had a Live Scan completed - do I need to get another one?

To observe, work, or volunteer in schools, students often complete a Live Scan to clear them to work with children. However, if you had a Live Scan completed through an employer or for a class at HSU or another university, you will need to complete the Certificate of Clearance Live Scan process if you will be in a credential program. By doing this, the results of your fingerprinting and background check are sent to the Commission on Teacher Credentialing, and this is what you will need as a credential student. (Other Live Scans simply go to your employer or university and will not be sufficient.)

It's important to follow all of the Certificate of Clearance steps outlined in your program's application. If you are ever in doubt as to whether or not you already have a Certificate of Clearance or want to check if it's complete, you can verify this on the CTC's website here. Click on the link that says "Teaching credential holders and applicants." The new page that will open asks for your social security number and date of birth. After entering that information, your Certificate of Clearance information will be displayed if you have one. If you don't have a Certificate of Clearance (or it is still being processed), the website will reply that no records are found. Please remember that the Certificate of Clearance process can take a few months, so it's best to start early.

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What is the required grade-point average for admission to credential programs?

An overall grade-point average (GPA) of 2.67 or 2.75 for the last 60 semester units (on a 4.0 scale) is required for regular admission. If your GPA falls short of the standard, you may file a low-GPA appeal with your application. For more information, visit the web page of the appropriate credential program. For applicants who have completed units as a graduate student, your graduate GPA needs to be a minimum of 3.0, and you need to maintain at least a 3.0 average throughout your post-baccalaureate studies here at HSU

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What are the test dates for CBEST and CSET, how can I register and get information?

Registering online is the recommended method. You will need a credit card to do this. Each website also has test information and often includes online practice questions and answers.

(Click on the name to go to the test web site.)

CBEST (California Basic Educational Skills Test) - 916.928.4001
CSET (California Subject Examinations for Teachers) - 916.928.4003

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How do I obtain an application to the credential program of my choice?

Applications are available for download at http://www.humboldt.edu/education. To download an application, go to the section for the program you are interested in (Special Education, Secondary Education, or Elementary Education), then look for the Application link on the left side navigation bar. In addition to submitting an application to a credential program, you must also submit a graduate application to HSU in order to be accepted by the university. This can be submitted online at http://www.csumentor.edu. Be sure to select the graduate application under list your objective as "teaching credential" in the program of your choice (EED, SED, SPED).

Secondary Education Applicants: Make sure you submit the necessary materials for the Subject Matter Departmental Review.

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Can I come to HSU and meet with an advisor?

You may contact the Education and Credentialing Office to arrange for advising in person or by telephone. For Elementary Education contact Bryn Coriell at 707.826.5108. For Secondary Education, contact Anna Thaler Petersen at 707.826.5870. For Special Education, contact Peggy Kirkpatrick at 707.826.5795. For Administrative Services, contact Greg Aslanian at 707-826-5886. Eric Van Duzer is the advisor for the Master's Program, and his phone number is 707-826-3726.

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Can you briefly describe what I would be doing in a credential program?

Each semester you will have both credential program courses and experiences apprentice teaching in public schools. Our two-semester credential programs involve working full days Monday through Friday and completing coursework assignments and preparation for teaching outside of class time.

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Do you offer internships?

If you are interested in finding about internships please contact the coordinators. For Elementary Education contact Bryn Coriell at 707.826.5108. For Secondary Education, contact Anna Thaler Petersen at 707.826.5870.

For Special Education internship information, please contact Peggy Kirkpatrick, SPED Coordinator.

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What if I move out of state after getting my credential?

If you earn your California Teaching Credential and then move out of state, you will likely be able to get a credential in your new home state via a reciprocal agreement between California and the other state. (For more information on reciprocal agreements and to find out if your state has one with California, click here.) Often you'll need to complete some extra coursework/exams (such as a state history course) within a set time frame; this varies from state to state, so you will need to contact your new state to find out their requirements.

You will also need to have an out-of-state verification form filled out by the university at which you earned your teaching credential. If you earned your credential at HSU, first get the form from your new state's teacher credentialing department, and then send it to us here at the School of Education. The mailing address is:

HSU School of Education

Attn: Out-of-State Waivers

1 Harpst St.

Arcata, CA  95521

Our fax number is: 707-826-5868.

Please be sure to include your contact information with your request in case we have questions about your form and need to reach you.

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I am a Mentor Teacher -- where can I find the School of Education Expertise Directory?

The HSU School of Education Expertise Directory can be found here or via a link on the Contact Us page. The Expertise Directory is a way for faculty and staff here at the School of Education to share our knowledge and volunteer our time in public school classrooms, as a thank-you to our Mentor Teachers.

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