English Education Option

Welcome to the English Education page at CSU Channel Islands! This option is meant for undergraduates who know that they want to teach at the middle or high school level after they complete their degree. It is also helpful for those who want to pursue other secondary school careers such as librarians, counselors, or administrators, since these career paths often involve classroom teaching first.

Below we provide answers to some frequently asked questions about the English Education Option.

  1. What does the English Education Option do for me?
  2. What are the requirements?
  3. Who do I contact, and how often?
  4. How early can I begin in the program?
  5. When is the portfolio due?
  6. How is the English Ed portfolio different than the regular English portfolio?
  7. How is the portfolio scored, and what happens if I do not pass?
  8. What else do I need to do to get into a credential program?

What does the English Education Option do for me?

It used to be that if you had a degree in your major, you were certified as having subject matter knowledge. This is no longer the case. To be certified as knowledgeable in their fields, prospective teachers now need to complete the California Subject Examination for Teachers (CSET)or receive a subject matter competency letter that comes from taking coursework and an assessment at an approved university.

The good news: CI is approved to provide you with subject matter competency, so that if you complete the English Education option and portfolio successfully, you will receive a letter that waives the CSET exam. You will also benefit by gaining much more background in English education than you possibly could develop by taking a test.

What are the requirements?

You need to follow the requirements for the English B.A. as laid out in the catalog, adding the coursework listed at the end of the BA under Options: English Education. Be aware that you do not need to take additional English electives—they are all included in the option. Save clean copies of your papers as you take courses; either print them and keep them in a permanent file, or make backup electronic copies.

Additional requirements are to meet with the English Education advisor annually and to complete the English Education portfolio successfully.

Who do I contact if I am taking this option and how often?

You need to see the English Education advisor, Mary Adler, at least once per year while you are at CI.  

Contact information:

Professor Mary Adler

Email: mary.adler@csuci.edu

Phone: 805-437-8486

Location: Bell Tower West 1295

Office Hours:  Please email to schedule an appointment. 

How early can I begin in the program?

The earlier you begin, the easier it is to fold in the courses to fill electives and other requirements, but you can start at any time. An advising appointment is the best way to see how much time it will take you to complete the program. It’s also a good way to find out when courses are offered and what sequence to follow.

When is the portfolio due?

The portfolio is due the semester prior to enrolling in Capstone. Students will be eligible to begin Capstone by completing half of the portfolio (both parts of two of the domains). The first half is due by November 15 for students planning a spring graduation or April 15 for fall graduation. The full portfolio is due on November or April 15 of the final semester.

How is the English Ed portfolio different than the regular English portfolio?

The English Ed portfolio is organized by California standards for English teachers rather than by our English program outcomes, although they do align with one another. Therefore, the portfolio layout is quite different from that of non English Ed students. Portfolio information sessions are held each semester in order to advise students about the portfolio process and provide detailed information to help you complete it. You will find out about these sessions if you have signed up for advising. You are encouraged to attend the portfolio information sessions early so you can begin thinking about the portfolio right away.

How is the portfolio scored, and what happens if I do not pass?

Portfolios are scored holistically using this scale:

  • 5, exemplary evidence provided
  • 4, strong evidence provided
  • 3, adequate evidence provided
  • 2, inadequate evidence provided
  • 1, unsatisfactory evidence provided

Passing portfolios must achieve a minimum average score of 3 on EACH part. Students who receive less than a 3 average will meet with an advisor to receive specific feedback about weaknesses in the portfolio and will have one month to revise and resubmit the portion of the portfolio that did not pass originally.

If the complete portfolio has not been submitted by the due date, the candidate will be required to complete the essays in a scheduled three-hour examination session. Portfolios will not be accepted after this session unless arrangements have been made due to serious or compelling circumstances.

Students are allowed one revision of the complete portfolio. If the revised portfolio does not pass, students will be ineligible for the subject matter waiver and will need to take the CSET examination.

In order to graduate with a BA and the subject matter waiver, students need to complete their work in Capstone and any remaining courses, participate in Capstone presentations, hand in final materials for the course, and complete an exit survey.

What else do I need to do to get into a credential program?

Different universities have different requirements for their credential programs, so you will need to check with the specific university you are planning to attend. At CI, the credential program offers information sessions multiple times each year. Make sure you ask about the secondary program rather than multiple subjects.

At these sessions you will learn about additional materials you need to provide, such as the CBEST test (different from the CSET), fingerprinting, recommendations and observation hours. You will also find out about deadlines. You are strongly recommended to attend an information session the semester before you plan to graduate.

We usually invite a credential analyst to attend one session of EDUC 330, Introduction to Secondary Schooling, to provide the class with a private information session. However, if you have questions, do not wait for this; go to an information session and ask your questions.

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