Local school districts anticipate needing thousands of new teachers in the next few years. For individuals who are committed to making a positive difference for students, this is a fantastic time to pursue a teaching credential. No matter your major, you can start preparing today for a career in teaching.


Pathways to PK–12 Teaching

To become a teacher you need a California Preliminary Teaching Credential. A teaching credential is a state-issued license to teach in a public school. At SDSU there are 2 pathways to get your teaching credential!

Comparison of Two Pathways

Below is a graphic that compares the 2 pathways at SDSU leading to a preliminary teaching credential.

Traditional Pathway

The traditional pathway typically takes 5 years and involves earning a bachelor's degree (including general education and major coursework) and completing credential prerequisites; this generally takes 4 years. Then future teachers must complete a credential program which includes credential coursework and student teaching; this can be completed in as little as one year.

ITEP Pathway

The ITEP pathway typically takes 4 years and integrates the bachelor's and credential program so that you can complete your general education, major and credential coursework, and student teaching within the 4 years it takes to earn a bachelor's degree.

Infographic comparing the traditional pathway with the new ITEP pathway
Infographic of traditional pathway

Infographic of ITEP pathway



About Traditional Credential Programs

Teaching credential programs are offered in the following subject areas:

Elementary School Teaching
  • Multiple Subjects (K–6)
  • Multiple Subjects (K–6) - Bilingual
Middle/High School Teaching
  • Single Subject - Bilingual
  • Single Subject (English)
  • Single Subject (Mathematics)
  • Single Subject (Science)
  • Single Subject (Social Science)
  • Single Subject (Art)
  • Single Subject (Music)
  • Single Subject (Physical Education)
Special Education
  • Early Childhood Specialization
  • Mild to Moderate Specialization
  • Extensive Support Needs Specialization

About ITEP Programs

To ease the growing K-12 shortage in California, policymakers have made it possible for teacher preparation programs to provide “Integrated Teacher Education Programs” (ITEP), a new combination 4-year, bachelor and credential option.

ITEP combines the study of academic subjects with professional preparation courses and field experiences.

Currently, CSU teacher preparation programs are structured as fifth-year programs. Students first must earn a bachelor's degree in a discipline in 4 years and then enroll in a fifth-year teacher preparation program. ITEP allows students to enter the teaching profession immediately upon graduation.

ITEPs for high-need subject areas are now recruiting in the following SDSU undergraduate majors:

  • Child & Family Development
    Credential in early childhood special education
  • Liberal Studies
    Credential options in multiple subject, bilingual multiple subject, or special education
  • Mathematics for Single Subject Teaching
    Credential in single subject math
  • Chemistry for Single Subject Teaching
    Credential in single subject chemistry
  • Interdisciplinary Studies in Three Departments
    Credential options in foundational math or foundational science

Next Steps

Traditional Programs

group session
Attend an Info Session

Sessions include general info regarding application requirements for our credential programs.


advising session
Meet with an Advisor

Talk to an advisor to find out which program works best for you.


applying online
How to Apply

Learn about prerequisite courses, exams and deadlines for the CSU and program applications.

ITEP Programs

Learn more about the ITEP 4-year Teacher Preparation Programs.

Jackie Fuller, Advising and Recruitment Specialist


TESTIMONIALS: Hear Directly from Our Graduates

Why I Chose to Teach...

Lennelle science teacher


featuring Lenelle Wylie, High School Biology Teacher

Joe science teacher


featuring Joe Garland, Middle School Math Teacher

Sofia bilingual teacher


featuring Sofia De La Garza, Bilingual Elementary School Teacher

sarah sped teacher


featuring Sarah Latoski-Jimenez, High School Special Ed. Teacher
and Angelia (Niecy) Watkins, Past Special Ed. Teacher and Current Special Ed. Administrator


It's a Good Time to Become a Teacher

chart with arrow going down

Teacher Shortage

San Diego is experiencing a significant teacher shortage.

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piggy bank

Financial Future

The average total compensation package for SDUSD entry level teachers is $57,369!

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child's hand

Teachers Make a Difference!

You can encourage, motivate, challenge, engage, inspire and instill a love for learning in children.

Learn more