Frequently Asked Questions

CalTeach Minor

What classes do I need to take for the CalTeach minor?

The CalTeach minor courses are EDUC 130, EDUC 131AC, UGIS/EDUC C122 (or EDSTEM 189, the Summer Research Institute), one of HISTORY 100ST/138T/180T/182T, and EDSTEM 187. One introductory course — EDSTEM 82 or 82T — must be taken prior to EDUC 130 to be able to enroll.

Can I participate in CalTeach if I am not a math or science major?

Yes, any student at UC Berkeley can take CalTeach courses and complete the minor. However, the CalTeach credential is only available to students majoring in a science, math, engineering, or technology field. Consult with the CalTeach Student Services Coordinator if you are not sure whether your academic background qualifies you for the credential program.

What is the difference between the minor and the teaching credential?

The minor in Science and Math Education, also known as the CalTeach Minor, consists of 5 required courses after a prerequisite series. Any undergraduate student at UC Berkeley can complete the minor.

The CalTeach Credential Program requires an application and is only open to students with strong math and science content in their academic schoolwork. The teaching credential requires one additional course and at least one semester of apprentice teaching after completion of the minor. The teaching credential qualifies recipients to hold a certificated teaching position in a California school.

I’m a transfer student. Can I complete the CalTeach minor during the two years I spend at Berkeley?

Yes, you can certainly finish the minor in two years. Visit our Courses page for an example course plan, then schedule an appointment with our Student Services Coordinator or Peer Advisors to discuss your options.

What is the difference between EDSTEM 82 and 82T? Which is right for me?

Both seminars satisfy the introductory CalTeach course requirement and offer an opportunity to explore teaching with K-12 students. EDSTEM 82 students are placed in science and math learning environments with upper elementary and middle school children to practice teaching. EDSTEM 82T focuses on STEM tutoring strategies and places seminar students with K-12 students for STEM enrichment and tutoring experiences outside of the classroom.

What is the difference between UGIS/EDUC C122 and EDSTEM 189?

EDSTEM 189, Summer Research Institute, is an eight-week program where participants conduct research in campus or nearby labs while also taking a seminar series which focuses on methods to bring research skills into K–12 classrooms. EDSTEM 189 is only offered in the summer while UGIS/EDUC C122 is offered every semester. In UGIS/EDUC C122, students undertake several in-depth research projects to develop methods for engaging in authentic research in the science or mathematics content area related to their major.

Undocumented & International Student Experience

Are International Students eligible to obtain a teaching credential through CalTeach?

International students are eligible to participate and complete the CalTeach Credential program. Please note that there might be complications when applying to the California Commission on Teacher Credentialing for the actual Teaching Credential.

Are Undocumented Students eligible to obtain a teaching credential through CalTeach?

Undocumented students are able to apply and receive a preliminary credential through the CalTeach program. There is no citizenship or immigration status requirement for teaching credentials in CA - however. In order to do the livescanning process and CTC application for a certificate of clearance or credential, students would have to have an ITIN. Finally, this applies specifically to the CalTeach credential program and does not account for seeking employment after being credentialed.

Are International and Undocumented Student eligible for SRI, Classroom Based Externships, or STEM Beyond Summer Internship?

You must be a citizen or legal resident in order to receive federally funded awards, which includes Noyce and BERET+D Scholarships or Programs. The Summer Research Institute (SRI) does include Beret+D programs, but may be done under other research and funding which is open to Undocumented and International folks. Thus, International and Undocumented students are ineligible to receive the SRI stipend, but it is possible to participate in the SRI program and potentially receive funding from a different source.

Similarly, STEM Beyond includes both Amgen-funded and Noyce-funded programs. Amgen can fund undocumented and international students while Noyce cannot. Amgen funds STEM Ambassadors and Summer Internships. Noyce funds Classroom-Based Externship and Summer Internships.

Are any of the scholarship opportunities open to International or Undocumented Students?

International and undocumented students are eligible to receive the Koshland Award. However, you must be a citizen or legal resident in order to receive federally funded awards, which includes Noyce and BERET+D Scholarships or Programs). The SRI does include Beret+D programs, but may be done under other research and funding which is open to undocumented and international folks.

If you are ever unsure, feel free to contact us through email or advising. Additionally, please find a non-exhaustive list of outside scholarships that are available to Undocumented students here and International students here.

Out-of-State Student Experience

If I am an out of state student, can I still get my teaching credential through CalTeach? Would I be able to use the credential back home?

Out of state students are eligible to receive a preliminary California Single Subject Credential after the completion of the CalTeach Credential Program. Please note that each state's credential requirements may differ so you will need to contact the state's credential or education agency to ask whether they will accept California's credentials.

Declaring the Minor

When can I declare the CalTeach Minor?

You can declare the minor at any point after you have completed EDSTEM 82 or EDSTEM 82T. Fill out the Minor Completion Form and either email the completed form to or drop the form off at 467 Evans Hall.

Distance Learning

Are field placements still required for Fall 2020/Spring 2021?

Yes, field placements are still required for EDSTEM 82/82T, EDUC 130, EDUC 131AC, and EDSTEM 187. The only change is that field placements are facilitated virtually during distance learning, and that there is an added option of K-12 Tutoring in STEM for families in the Bay Area in addition to the regular Mentor Classroom placements. Please find more information on our K-12 Tutoring Program page.

What are field placements like during distance learning?

During distance learning, CalTeach students are either placed within a local K-12 ‘virtual’ classroom or are paired as a science or math tutor with one or two students. Both placements allow students to apply the various theories, concepts, and methods learned in CalTeach courses.

What counts as Field Placement Hours? How will I meet my Hours requirement?

During distance learning, we have adjusted what qualifies as Field Placement Hours. For Spring 2021 Field Placements, please refer to our Guidelines document and contact CalTeach advisors or your instructor if you have questions.

CalTeach Credential Application

When should I apply to the credential?

You can apply to the credential program once you finish the CalTeach minor.

When is the credential application due?

If you are applying to do the credential in the spring, the deadline is Oct 1. If you are applying to do the credential in the fall, the deadline is March 15.

Can I take UGIS 303 and complete the credential after graduating from UC Berkeley?

Yes, students who are admitted to the CalTeach credential program can enroll in UGIS 303 through concurrent enrollment in UC Berkeley Extension if they have already graduated.

I would like to obtain a Multiple Subject Credential (for elementary school teaching), can CalTeach help me?

CalTeach Credential program is designed for only single subject credential. If students want to pursue the Multiple Subject Credential, the Berkeley Graduate School of Education offers a graduate program for this.

If I am looking to get an additional credential on top of my single-subject credential through CalTeach, how do I do that?

After receiving a preliminary Single Subject Credential through CalTeach and subsequently ‘clearing’ the credential, it is possible to obtain additional single subject content areas onto your credential through the steps outlined here.

What are the credential costs, and is financial aid available for the credential program?

You can see the approximate credential costs here. As for financial aid, if you are completing the credential before graduation, it will be considered part of your undergraduate studies with no change in your financial aid eligibility. If you are completing the credential program through UC Berkeley Extension after graduation, you will not be eligible for financial aid through the campus but you can still apply for the CalTeach Noyce scholarship.

How do I get the Certificate of Clearance?

You must apply for a Certificate of Clearance through the California Commission on Teacher Credentialing (CTC).

How do I get TB tested?

The UHS Tang Center offers free TB testing on a drop-in basis to students with SHIP ($20 to students without SHIP). Students without SHIP may choose to have their TB test done through their own medical provider or for free at the Berkeley Free Clinic.

If I've already been fingerprinted, do I have to do it again for the Certificate of Clearance?

Yes, you will need to complete the LiveScan fingerprinting process again for your Certificate of Clearance. If you have been fingerprinted for a field placement, your background check results were sent directly to the school where you were volunteering. For the Certificate of Clearance, you must use the CTC LiveScan form to have your results sent to the CTC.

Does CalTeach pay for fingerprinting or TB testing?

No, Cal Teach does not pay for either of these processes for the credential application. The LiveScan processing fee typically ranges from $69-74 and the online Certification of Clearance application fee is $37. TB testing is generally covered under most insurance policies.

How do I find a mentor teacher for apprentice teaching?

CalTeach staff will work with you to help identify a good mentor teacher. You should begin thinking about a mentor teacher during the semester before you apply for the credential program. You may want to ask a teacher you have worked with in one of your CalTeach courses, or ask them if they can connect you with other teachers at their school. You can also ask other students in your program if they have recommendations.

Can I analyze the same lesson plan for different sections of my portfolio?

Yes, it is fine to use the same lesson, or different lessons-- the most important thing is to focus on specific and different aspects of your lesson(s) to highlight your teaching strengths in the different sections of the portfolio.

CBEST & CSET Questions

Which tests should I take?

You must take and pass the California Basic Educational Skills Test (CBEST). You also need to pass the California Subject Examinations for Teachers (CSET) subtests that correspond to the subject(s) in which you plan to apply for certification. Please click here for a table of which CSET subtests are required for each subject.

It is generally recommended that math students pursue the full Mathematics credential rather than Foundational-Level Math credential and that science students pursue the General Science credential rather than the Specialized Science credential. See our Student Services Coordinator if you have additional questions.

How do you test out of the CBEST?

There are three ways to test out of the CBEST: SAT scores, ACT scores or AP scores. The SAT scores needed are a 550 in Math and 500 in English. The ACT scores needed are a 23 in Math and a 22 in English. The AP scores needed are a 3 or above in Math (AP Calc AB, AP Calc BC, or AP Stats) and a 3 or above in English (AP language, AP literature). See more information here.

When should I plan to take the CBEST and CSET?

You should begin researching test dates and studying for the CBEST and CSET approximately 1 year in advance of the semester when you plan to begin the credential program.

All required exams must be taken in time to submit your scores with your application for the credential program (October 1 for Spring admission or March 15 for Fall admission). If you do not have passing scores at the time of application, include the confirmation page for your test date registration in your application

Can I take multiple CSET tests in one day?

It depends on how you are as a test taker, but it is possible to take up to 3 subtests in one day. Because the Math CSET exams are computerized and allow for more scheduling flexibility, students generally choose to take the 3 Math CSET subtests on separate testing sessions.

Should I send my CBEST and CSET scores to UC Berkeley?

Yes, you should have your CBEST and CSET scores sent to UC Berkeley. You should also check the box during registration to have your score report emailed as a PDF Score Report. Include a printed copy of your Score Report with your application to the credential program.

Are there scholarships available to pay for the CBEST and CSET?

As of Spring 2018, CalTeach is offering a limited number of Subject Matter Competency Scholarships specifically to offset the cost of the CSET. You can also reduce costs by planning ahead and registering before the deadline to avoid a late fee. The CBEST can also be taken as a paper-based exam on specific test dates which is less expensive than taking the computer-based test with an additional $61 computer service fee. Students who receive the CalTeach Noyce and Koshland scholarships can also use this funding for any purpose, including to pay for test registration fees.

If you have questions that are not answered here, please visit our Advising or Contact page to get in touch with CalTeach staff and advisors.