The Single Subject Credential Program places significant emphasis on fieldwork and student teaching. Our goal is that each Teacher Candidate participates in 120 hours of fieldwork (observation/participation) prior to student teaching, and one full semester (18 weeks - 450 hours) of student teaching, beginning with the first day of the public school semester and ending with the last day of the public school semester.
Typically, Teacher Candidates who begin the program in the fall also begin their fieldwork on the first day of the public school semester. This date ranges from early-mid August for some districts, all the way to after Labor Day for others. Differences in start date impact holidays and semester breaks. Thus, some districts end in late May and others end in mid-June. CSUF Teacher Candidates are expected to follow the school calendar for the entire school year. They are also expected to attend teacher staff meetings, work days, and professional development opportunities whenever possible.
The Single Subject Credential Program (SSCP) has partnerships with 14 local districts where most Teacher Candidates are assigned to field experiences. Consultation, cooperation, and collaboration for placements occur with district placement coordinators. The process is complex.
Newly admitted Candidates submit a
Fieldwork Placement Request Form
to their Subject Area Coordinator, who approves (with modifications as appropriate) the request by recording it on the Collaborative Placement Spreadsheet.
- Candidates are not permitted to student teach at a school in which a close relative (parent/sibling/aunt/uncle/grandparent) is employed. When submitting a placement request, candidates must disclose if any family members are employed at the requested school or elsewhere in the district.
- In turn, the SSCP Director organizes requests by district. The Director submits them to the individual district coordinators (s ee Fieldwork Request Email for a sample email that initiates the placement process), who begin the intensive process of communicating (in turn) to the site principal, department chair, potential master teacher and then back up the line.
- When the district placement coordinator confirms the request to the SSCP Director, the names and emails of assigned master teachers are recorded and the candidate-master teacher pair is sent a welcome email with contact information, SSCP features, and next steps. Site principals, district placement coordinators, and subject area coordinators are copied on these emails. See sample MT/TC Placement Communication Email.
This process occurs between late April-August for fall admits and December-January for spring admits. Some districts require formal interviews as part of their selection process. If a district is unable to provide a placement, the SSCP Director seeks a new placement request from the Subject Area Coordinator and the process repeats itself. Occasionally, Candidates are placed outside of the 16 districts. This is usually due to unique situations, including candidates in subject areas with a high number of candidates (such as English) or few high-quality teachers, or the Subject Area Coordinator wishes to place a candidate with a high-quality teacher outside partner districts. In these situations, the Subject Area Coordinator initiates contact with the district and follows the same placement process as outlined above, providing the SSCP Director with the placement confirmation.
Teacher Candidates are oriented to fieldwork prior to reporting to schools. They are also provided a protocol for the First Day Reporting to Schools and the First Week of Fieldwork.
Candidates are grouped into "Partner District Cohorts" (PDC) for their EDSC 440S/440F courses, and the PDC instructors represent the university in the district, conduct on-site general pedagogy seminar classes, and provide counseling and advisory services to candidates in order to support their first semester student teaching experience. PDC instructors also collect the Verification of Fieldwork and Master Teacher Qualifications Form and confirm appropriate placement conditions (i.e., sufficient EL and students with special needs in the classes and a tenured Master Teacher). In addition, they provide Master Teacher Orientations and helpful communications within the first eight weeks of the first semester of the SSCP.
Field experiences for Intern Candidates are arranged by the Single Subject Intern Director and district personnel, including district Human Resources staff and the site principal. A mentor is established at the time of hire for the Intern. Additionally, separate Internship Agreements are established with the district of hire and the University.