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Becoming a Special Education Teacher

1. Apply for admission to the Education Specialist Preliminary Credential program in Mild-Moderate Disabilities, Moderate-Severe Disabilities, or Early Childhood Special Education.

Requirements include:

Bachelor's degree from a regionally accredited college or university and program.

  • Admission to San José State University.
  • Grade Point average (GPA) of 2.87, or better.
  • Passing score on the California Basic Education Skills Test (CBEST).
  • Passing score on the California Subject Examinations for Teachers (for the Education Specialist Mild to Moderate and Moderate to Severe Disabilities Credentials)
  • Satisfaction of the Constitution requirement.
  • Completion of 50 hours of verifiable, supervised experience with children in an instructional setting
  • Completion of Department of Special Education application with all required documents
  • Certificate of Clearance for personal and professional fitness.

3. Complete a Professional Preparation Program Leading to the Educational Specialist Credential

To be endorsed for the credential, the following requirements apply to all options:

Preliminary Credential

  • Satisfied all course requirements for the credential option (see Special Education section of the Catalog).
  • Grades of "B" or better in all credential courses/GPA of 3.0
  • Proof of competence in Reading Instruction by passing the RICA, unless having a valid California Multiple or Single Subject Credential.
  • Satisfactory Dispositions Evaluations

Professional Clear (Level II)

To be endorsed for the credential, the following requirements apply to all options:

  • Candidates must hold Level I Preliminary Education Specialist Credential.
  • Candidates must apply to complete a Level II program of studies and experiences including health education and the technology requirement.
  • Complete an induction plan.
  • Complete a program of studies and experiences (see Special Education section of Catalog).
  • Professional portfolio demonstrating advanced knowledge and skills.
  • Verification of two years of successful teaching experience in a public school or private school with equivalent status while holding Preliminary Level I credential.
  • Grades of "B" or better in all courses for credential.