General information

5. Subject Matter Requirement

It's Not Waived -- You Just Have More Ways to Meet It

All credential candidates must demonstrate their proficiency in the subject matter area of their intended credential and it is recommended that applicants complete this requirement prior to submitting an application for admission. While we can move forward with an offer of admission prior to a candidate meeting the Subject Matter requirement, the expectation is that admitted students will take all required CSET exams no later than May 1st and pass or meet the Subject Matter Requirement by July 31st of the year they begin the program. If requirements are not met by the start of the program, your progress in the program can be impacted.  Please click here  for more information.

A complete Subject Matter Guidance document for each subject we offer is available to download under the “related links” section to the right.  If you have questions after reviewing the guidance document, please email us at for assistance.

The following list summarizes all options available to demonstrate Subject Matter proficiency:

1. California Subject Examinations for Teachers (CSET): passing all required subtests. The expectation is that all applicants must TAKE the required CSET exams by May 1st.  Click here for more information. 

Good news: The California State Budget includes funding to continue to provide a fee reimbursement to candidates for CSET examinations. This program ends on June 30th, 2024!!!!!!

Eligible individuals can register, pay, and be refunded for the CSET. All examination fees will be reimbursed/refunded at a future date as soon as state contracts are approved. Refunds will be automatic to the individual taking the examination, and there will be no additional steps needed.

For more information and updates about the waivers, eligible exams and individual eligibility requirements please visit the California Exam and Assessment Fee Waiver FAQ’s page.

2. Subject Matter Waiver Program: completing an approved subject matter waiver program as an undergraduate.  A waiver program requires you to pass a very specific set of courses. At UC Davis we have a waiver program in Agriculture and Mathematics. Click here for more information.

3. Academic major in the subject area: earning an academic major in the subject area of the credential being sought.  The academic major and the subject to which you are applying must be an exact matchClick here for more information and for approved majors.

4. Coursework: completion of a course addressing each of the Commission-adopted subject matter domains for each subtest.  Coursework can be used to pass any or all subtests.  This option is different from the Subject Matter Waiver Program. Click here for more information.

5. Combination of coursework and examination(s): completion of coursework and/or passing of the CSET subtests may meet or exceed the completion of the subject matter domains for all subtests. This would combine options 1 and 4 to meet the Subject Matter Requirement.  For example, if your subject requires three subtests you could pass the exam for two subtests and use the coursework option to demonstrate proficiency for the third subtest. Click here for more information.

If you are out of state or out of country, please contact us at to discuss options and timing.


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