Subject Matter Competency - CSET exam

Read about the CSET subject matter competency requirement for those applying to the Preliminary Credential Program.

California Subject Examinations for Teachers (CSET):

  • Go to for test dates, online registration, and more.
  • Exams may be in progress when you are applying, but scores need to be submitted as soon as possible to be eligible for admission.  Scores are needed in April or early May to be considered for admission to the credential program. 
  • All subtests indicated below, for your subject area, must be passed to be eligible for admission to a 2-semester program.
  • Non-passing scores may be considered for eligibility for the 3-semester program. All CSET subtests must be passed prior to starting student teaching.
  • Subject Matter Competency Test scores are considered valid for 10 years.  Teacher certification must be recommended within that time period in order for the scores to be permanent.  If you do not obtain a recommendation for your teaching credential within 10 years, you must retake the appropriate subject matter competency test.
  • Special Education applicants: Most Mild/Moderate and Moderate/Severe SPED credential applicants complete the Multiple Subject CSET exam to prove subject matter competency.  This allows you to work with disabled children in all the subject areas.  If you take the Single Subject CSET (in Math or Social Science‚Ķ) you would only be able to work with disabled children in that subject area.

Refer to the chart below to learn which subtest you are required to pass:

 Teaching Area  Test Name/ Test Code
(2 subtests required)
Artistic Perception;
Historical and Cultural Context of the Visual Arts;
Aesthetic Valuing (140)
Creative Expression;
Connections, Relationships, and Applications;
History and Theories of Learning in Art (141) 
(4 subtests required)
Literature & Textual Analysis;
Composition & Rhetoric (105)
Language, Linguistics & Literacy (106)
Composition & Rhetoric;
Literature & Textual Analysis (107)
Communications: Speech, Media,
& Creative Performance (108)
(3 subtests required)
Algebra; Number Theory (211)
Geometry; Probability & Statistics (212)
Calculus; History of Mathematics (213)
Mathematics: Foundational
(2 subtests required)
Algebra; Number Theory (211)
Geometry; Probability & Statistics (212)
Multiple Subjects
(3 subtests required)
Reading, Language & Literature, History,
Social Science (101)
Science, Mathematics (214)
Physical Education, Human Development,
Visual & Performing Arts (103)
(3 subtests required)
Artistic Perception, Historical and Cultural
Foundations, Aesthetic Valuing (136)
Creative Expression, Connections and
Relationships-video required (137)
Music Methodology and Repertoire (138)
Physical Education
(3 subtest required)
Growth, Motor Development and Motor Learning;
Science of Human Movement (129)
Sociology and Psychology of Human Movement;
Movement Concepts and Form (130)
Professional Foundations; Integration of
Concepts (131)
Science: Biological Sciences *
(2 subtests required)
General Science (215)
Life Science (217)
Science: Chemistry *
(2 subtests required)
General Science (215)
Chemistry (218)
Science: Foundational Level *
(1 subtest required)
General Science (215)
Science: Geoscience *
(2 subtests required)
General Science (215)
Earth & Space Science (219)
Science: Physics *
(2 subtests required)
General Science (215)
Physics (220)
Social Science
(3 subtests required)
World History; World Geography (114)
U.S. History; U.S. Geography (115)
Civics; Economics; California History (116)

(3 subtests required) 


General Linguistics, Linguistics of Spanish (145)
Literary & Cultural Texts & Traditions; Cultural
Analysis and Comparison (146)
Language and Communication: Oral Expression,
Listening, Reading, and Written Expression (147)



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