Go to content

Community College Student Planning a Special Education School Teaching Career

If you are planning a career as a special education teacher, there are many things you should be doing right now. You need to plan what you will need after transferring to a 4-year college. Almost all California Community Colleges offer Teacher Education and Early Childhood Education programs. Some may be transferable as part of a liberal studies or blended program. Contact your local community college to see what specific courses they offer.
Print Checklist
Community College 4-Year College Teacher Prep  
Unchecked check box     Participate in a teacher recruitment program at your community college.
Unchecked check box Unchecked check box   Gain experience and learn what teaching is like by volunteering in classrooms for different grades, tutoring, or mentoring students. Check out service learning activities. Volunteer with local education foundations.
Unchecked check box     Research and plan to take teacher preparation-related courses that are transferable to the 4-year or teacher preparation program you plan to complete.
  Unchecked check box   Complete a baccalaureate or higher degree from a regionally accredited college or university.
Unchecked check box Unchecked check box   Meet the basic skills requirement.
  Unchecked check box Unchecked check box Satisfy one of the following requirements for subject-matter competence: Provide verification of subject-matter competence by either passing the California Subject Examinations for Teachers (CSET). **OR** Complete a Commission-approved single subject-matter program or its equivalent and obtain certification of completion from the authorized person in the education department of a California college or university with an approved program in the subject area.
    Unchecked check box Pass the Reading Instruction Competence Assessment (RICA).
  Unchecked check box Unchecked check box Complete a course or pass an examination on the U.S. Constitution.
    Unchecked check box Complete a Commission-approved [Education Specialist Credential Program](http://www.ctc.ca.gov/reports/data/app-edu-prep-prog.html) in an education specialist category resulting in formal recommendation by the Commission-approved program sponsor.
      Note: Verification of RICA and subject-matter competence are not required for the area of Early Childhood Special Education, nor is it required of individuals who hold a valid California Clear, Life or Clear teaching credential based upon possession of a bachelor's degree and completion of a professional preparation program, including student teaching.

Browse the Special Education Credential Requirements for details and resources.
The following answers paraeducators' questions about becoming credentialed special education teachers:

Register now so you can:

Already registered? Go ahead and sign in.