California Preliminary Teacher Credential

Multiple Subject: The Multiple Subject Teaching Credential authorizes the holder to teach all subjects in a self-contained classroom, such as the classrooms in most elementary schools, in grades preschool, K–12, or in classes organized primarily for adults.

Single Subject: The Single Subject Teaching Credential authorizes the holder to teach the specific subject(s) named on the credential in departmentalized classes, such as those in most middle schools and high schools, in grades preschool, K–12, or in classes organized primarily for adults.

Attend an Info Session

Students who are considering this credential can attend informational group advising sessions offered by the Office for Student Success (OSS). Sessions will include general information regarding the requirements for applying to our preliminary credential programs in a presentation format. You can also watch a pre-recorded Virtual Info Session which includes general info regarding application requirements for our credential programs.


What Makes SDSU Unique?

Annually, US News and World Report ranks the education programs at San Diego State University among the best in California and the very best of the 23 California State University campuses. Here are six reasons why:

Strong partnerships with local public schools

San Diego State University has long been the primary provider of new teachers to San Diego area school districts. We work closely with these districts to "grow" excellent new teachers for the region. Our public school partners understand and embrace the challenge of developing the next generation of teachers.

Our famous “Cohort Model”

Each cohort is guided closely by one or two faculty members  ("team leaders"). The cohort and the team leaders provide a natural system of social and emotional support for each student. Cohort members share what they learn with one another, creating an additional layer of learning opportunities and professional growth.

Learn more about our various cohorts and team leaders.

Crucial multicultural teaching focus

Our teacher education reflects the dynamic San Diego region where people of many cultures, nationalities, and languages share communities and schools. Students learn how to appreciate cultural diversity while supporting student academic learning. Courses and field experiences in the public schools focus on the strengths and attributes of diverse communities, families, and individuals.

Powerful research-practice connection

Our teacher education program brings together best practices from the public schools with the most important knowledge developed by educational researchers and theorists. Our students learn from both researchers and practitioners, from our internationally-renowned education faculty and the top teachers in local schools.

Two-semester and three-semester program options

You can complete the credential program in either two semesters or three semesters. The three semester option is designed to serve students who need to work part-time or have substantial family obligations.

Affordable tuition

The tuition for California residents is much lower than the price tag for private universities.
For current information visit SDSU Tuition and Fees.


Our Credential programs feature a field-based cohort model of preparation. Students are grouped into cohorts of 25-30 for the majority of their courses. In order to unify the research and theory of the San Diego State University faculty with the best practices of local schools, the blocks are organized around our many San Diego area public school partnerships. Courses in the cohorts are often taught at public school sites. Student teaching occurs simultaneous to university instruction, bringing together the very best educational ideas of the University and public school practitioners.

Theater credential students will join the 21st Century Blended Online Cohort.

Credential Courses

Students in the Single Subject Theater Preliminary Credential Program complete the following courses. Prerequisite courses must be complete prior to beginning the program. Often students take these as part of their undergraduate program and/or during the summer prior to the start of the Credential Program.

Prerequisite Courses

Course # Course Title Units
ED 451  Introduction to Multicultural Education 3
TE 280 Health Education for Teachers 1
SPED 450 Classroom Adaptations for Special Populations 2
Total   6

Required Courses

Course # Course Title Units
THEA 600 Writing for Theatre 6
TE 922 Behavioral and Psychological Aspects of Teaching 3
TE 903 Secondary School Student Teaching Seminar 2
TE 933 Teaching Reading in the Secondary Schools 3
TE 954 Humanistic and Social Aspects of Teaching 3
TE 963 Secondary School Student Teaching I 6
TE 964 Secondary School Student Teaching II 12
ED 970 Teaching Event Assessment 3
DLE 915B Teaching in the Content Areas: ELD/SDAIE 3

Contact the Advisor to Apply

Liz Buffington, Advisor and 21st Century Blended Learning Coordinator
Email: [email protected] 

Please reach out to the advisor for application specific questions including:

  • Information on the Golden State Teacher Grant Program (up to $20,000 available).
  • Single Subject Credentials needed to get hired in California School Districts.
  • General Studies and Major waivers for competency exams.
  • Exam information and fee waivers
  • Maximizing undergraduate financial aid and coursework for prerequisite courses.