Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry

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Teaching Credential

Subject Matter Competency in Chemistry for a Single-subject Teaching Credential 

The requirements for single subject competency have been established by the California Commission on Teacher Credentialing (CCTC).  The SFSU College of Education maintains a web site with information on the single subject teaching credential program.  California teaching credential candidates are required by law to verify their subject matter competency.  
There are three different paths to meet the requirements for subject matter competency in chemistry:
 
If you are a holder of a Single Subject, Standard Secondary, or Special Secondary Teaching Credential, you may have "Chemistry" added to your credential as a supplementary authorization by meeting the following requirement: 20 semester units (including at least 10 upper division semester units) of non-remedial course work in chemistry, completed at a regionally accredited community college, college, or university.  A grade of C or higher is required in every course used to meet this requirement.

For more info, please contact the Department’s teaching credential advisor:
Dr. Pete Palmer
Phone: 415-338-7717
E-mail:  palmer@sfsu.edu
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Certification by Approved Subject Matter Competency Program


The
California Commission on Teacher Credentialing (CCTC) has approved the subject matter competency program in chemistry as described in Tables 1-A and 1-B. Students who complete this program of study with a 2.75 or higher GPA will be certified as having fulfilled the CCTC’s subject matter competency requirement in chemistry.
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Program Description


The subject matter competency program in chemistry comprises 39 units of breadth coursework (Table 1-A) and 34-37 units of depth coursework (Table 1-B). After completing the breadth courses, candidates will be prepared to teach chemistry, physics, astronomy, geology, and biology concepts, methods, applications, and their various interrelationships, at the K-9 grade levels. The depth courses have been selected to provide candidates with in-depth content knowledge within the discipline [CHEM 115, 215, 233, 300, 321, 335, 340, 341, 349]; extensive laboratory experience [CHEM 216, 234, 322, 343, 336]; an integrative science course that requires students to apply and integrate their science knowledge [SCI 510]; and a field experience course that provides hands-on teaching within the San Francisco public schools [SCI 652]. The breadth requirement, GEOL/METR/OCN 405, also presents a culminating experience that requires extensive scientific writing and integration of chemistry with the earth sciences. Together, the breadth and depth courses prepare candidates to teach chemical science concepts, methods, applications, and integrations with other science disciplines through the 12th grade level.

Table 1A:  SSMPP Chemistry:  Breadth Program of Study

Course # Course Name Units
ASTR 115/116
Introduction to Astronomy with Lab
4
PHYS 111/112 and
PHYS121/122 
   or 
PHYS 220/222 and
PHYS 230/2322
General Physics I / Laboratory and
General Physics II/Laboratory
   or
General Physics with Calculus I/Lab
General Physics with Calculus II/Lab
(4) + (4)
   or
(4) + (4)
GEOL 110 Physical Geology 4
GEOL / METR / OCN 405 Planetary Climate Change 4
BIOL 230 Introduction to Biology I (with lab) 5
BIOL 240  Introduction to Biology II (with lab) 5
CHEM 115 General Chemistry I (with lab) 5
TOTAL BREADTH UNITS 39

After fulfilling these breadth courses, chemistry program candidates are prepared to teach chemistry, physics, astronomy, geology, and biology concepts, methods, applications, and their various interrelationships at the K-9 grade levels.
 
The depth course requirements for the SSMPP in chemistry include 11 lower- and upper-division chemistry courses; 8 units of math prerequisites; a teaching field experience course [SCI 652]; and an integrative science course, [SCI 510]. Together, these depth courses prepare program candidates to teach chemical science concepts, methods, applications, and integrations with other science disciplines through the 12th grade level.  The depth courses are as follows:

Table 1B:  SSMPP Chemistry:  Depth Program of Study

Course # Course Name Units
CHEM 115 1
General Chemistry I (essential concepts)
General Chemistry I Lab
(5)
CHEM 215 2  General Chemistry II (quantitative applications) 3
CHEM 216 General Chemistry II Lab 2
CHEM 233 Organic Chemistry I 3
CHEM 234 Organic Chemistry I Lab 2
CHEM 300 3 General Physical Chemistry 3
CHEM 321 Quantitative Chemical Analysis 3
CHEM 322 or
CHEM 343
Quantitiative Chemical Analysis Lab or
General Biochemistry Lab
2 or 2
CHEM 335 Organic Chemistry II 3
CHEM 336 Organic Chemistry II Lab 3
CHEM 340 and
CHEM 341 or
CHEM 349
Biochemistry I and Biochemistry II or
General Biochemistry
3 + 3
or 3
SCI 510 Search for Solutions 3
SCI 652 SFSU Science Partners in K-12 Schools 4
TOTAL DEPTH UNITS 34-37

Footnotes to Table 1 A and 1 B: 
[1]  CHEM 115 is both a breadth and depth requirement for the SSMPP in chemistry.  The hours are tabulated in the breadth program column, as they are for each science-related single subject matter preparation program at SFSU.
[2]  CHEM 215 has prerequisites of CHEM 115 and two courses (passed with a grade of C- or better) from the list MATH 226, 227, PHYS 111, 121, 220, 230, or 240.
[3]  CHEM 300 has prerequisites of MATH 227 and PHYS 121 or 240.

Subject Matter Competency Review


The
California Commission on Teacher Credentialing (CCTC) has approved the subject matter competency program in chemistry as described in Tables 1-A and 1-B. Students who complete this program of study with a 2.75 or higher GPA will be certified as having fulfilled the CCTC’s subject matter competency requirement in chemistry.

Applicants to SFSU’s Single Subject Credential Program who are attempting to achieve certification of subject matter competency via the coursework route must submit a subject matter competency review form with their application package. Prospective applicants should download the review form, fill out the table describing the relevant coursework, and contact Dr. Pete Palmer to have their coursework program reviewed.  Note that you must complete 100% of the subject matter competency coursework to be in the credential program, although some of this coursework can be in-progress during the application and admission process. If you completed some coursework at another institution, course equivalency must be established with the relevant SFSU courses. Equivalency for many courses completed at California public institutions of higher education is provided on the ASSIST online student-transfer information system; other courses should be evaluated for equivalency by an advisor in the relevant discipline. (For example, a biology advisor should evaluate biology coursework.) Enter coursework information in the “coursework completed” or “coursework in progress” sections as follows:
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Column Information to be Entered by the applicant
SFSU Course
Enter the SFSU course prefix and number for each course used to satisfy the subject matter competency program, for example, “CHEM 115.” The required courses are listed above in Tables 1-A and 1-B.
Dept & Course # If you took the course at SFSU, leave this space blank. If you took an equivalent course at another institution, enter the course prefix and number of the actual course taken.
Course Title Enter the name of the actual course taken.
Units Enter the number of semester-units. Units for courses taken on a quarter system must be converted to their semester-unit equivalent.
The conversion factor is, 1 quarter unit = 2/3 semester units. For example, a 3-unit quarter-system course is equivalent to a 2-unit semester course.
Grade Enter the course grade as shown on your transcript. Leave blank for coursework in progress.
Term Enter the semester or quarter and year, for example, F 2000. Use the following abbreviations: F for Fall; S for Spring; SU for Summer; W for Winter.
Institution If you took the course at SFSU, leave this space blank. If you took an equivalent course at another institution, enter the institution’s name.

Certification by Examination

Students may elect to demonstrate competency by achieving passing scores in a series of exams.  The California Subject Examinations for Teachers/Single Subject Assessments for Teaching (CSET/SSAT) organization maintains the CSET web site that includes exam dates, contents, and sample questions.  The CTC also maintains a web site with information about these exams, including the current examination schedule.  The required exams and passing standards are:

CSET Exam 118, Science Subtest I: General Science, with score of (+/-) 220 out of 300
CSET Exam 119, Science Subtest II: General Science, with score of (+/-) 220 out of 300
CSET Exam 121, Science Subtest III: Chemistry, with score of (+/-) 220 out of 300


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Chemistry Specialized Certificate

The California Commission on Teacher Credentialing (CCTC) approved a specialized and limited credential in Chemistry.  This teaching certification is valid only for the designated discipline; that is, the person would not be able to teach general science, integrated science, or introductory science.  There are three different paths to meet the requirements for a specialized certificate in chemistry:

  1. Completion of a post-baccalaureate degree (i.e., M.S. or Ph.D.) from a regionally-accredited institution in the requested area, or in a closely related area deemed equivalent by the Commission.
  2. Completion of a baccalaureate degree (B.A. or B.S.) and 30 semester-units or 45 quarter-units of postgraduate coursework in the science area requested, or in a closely related area deemed equivalent by the Commission
  3. Achieving passing scores on CSET Test #121 - Science Subtest III: Chemistry, and CSET Test #125 - Science Subtest IV: Chemistry (Specialized).  The official CSET Web site, which includes test guides, internet registration, and more information can be found at www.cset.nesinc.com.

The closely related areas for the chemistry (specialized) certificate are Inorganic Chemistry, Organic Chemistry, Quantitative Analysis/Qualitative Analysis, Physical Chemistry, Biochemistry, Nuclear Chemistry, and Physical Science-Chemistry.  The degree and postgraduate coursework must be from a regionally-accredited institution, and each course applicable to the science area requested shall have a grade of "B" or better, "pass," or "credit."

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