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C I 295 is required for teacher candidates seeking admission to the following certification programs: any secondary (7-12) certification area (Language and Literacy Education (LL ED), Mathematics Education (MTHED), Science Education (SCIED), and Social Studies Education (SS ED)) or World Languages Education (WL ED).

C I 295 is a two-credit course that consists of three major components:

  1. A weekly seminar consisting of reading, discussion, lecture and reflective writing assignments
  2. A two-hour weekly tutoring experience
  3. Two bus trips to schools for observations

C I 295 Requirements

Seminars are held on Tuesday or Thursday afternoon. These seminars engage teacher candidates in reading, thinking, talking and writing about a wide range of issues and topics that are pertinent for individuals considering becoming P-12 educators.

Each teacher candidate in C I 295 is required to participate in a weekly two-hour tutoring experience during the C I 295 course. Tutoring opportunities are available in a wide variety of locations and allow students to engage in tutoring a number of individuals with differing needs and interests.

At two different points during the semester, teacher candidates in C I 295 take bus trips to spend a day observing in local school districts in central Pennsylvania. Transportation is provided, and C I 295 students are pre-assigned to specific schools.  Once in the schools, students are engaged in a variety of observation activities that link the school observation with the C I 295 seminars.

Students are required to dress and behave in a professional manner while participating in the school observations. They should also conduct themselves in a professional manner in their online activities. In addition, each student must provide the required clearances by the end of the first week of C I 295.

Participating in the bus trips requires teacher candidates to be away from the university from approximately 7 a.m to 4 p.m. on either Tuesday or Thursday. Thus, those who wish to schedule C I 295 must have either Tuesday or Thursday free from other classes for the bus trips. Teacher candidates who must schedule classes on both Tuesday and Thursday may be allowed to register for C I 295 provided that they receive permission from their course instructors to be absent from the Tuesday/Thursday class in order to participate in the two bus trips.

Teacher Candidates who find themselves in this situation must complete the application for C I 295 exception form and submit it to the CIFE Office, 170 Chambers Building, before they will be allowed to register for C I 295.

The following clearances are required in order to participate in C I 295

  1. Federal Criminal History (FBI Fingerprints)Must be completed in Pennsylvania.
  2. Pennsylvania Child Abuse History (Act 151)
  3. Pennsylvania Criminal Background Check (Act 34)

Please note: All required clearances must be valid at the beginning of each field experience. It is also possible that some early childhood settings will require that the clearances be valid for the entire length of the field experience. Your supervisor will inform you if that is the case.

For more information on the required clearances, visit the Clearance Section of the website.

C I 295A is required for teacher candidates seeking admission to the Pre-Kindergarten through Fourth Grade (PK-4) certification program. C I 295 is a three-credit course that consists of two major components:

  • a weekly seminar consisting of reading, discussion, lecture and reflective writing assignments
  • six hours per week spent observing and working with individual children or small groups of children in an early childhood setting for a period of 10 weeks

C I 295A Requirements

Seminars engage teacher candidates in reading, thinking, talking and writing about a wide range of issues and topics that are pertinent for individuals considering becoming PK- 4 educators.

Teacher candidates will be placed for their observation experience for a total of 60 hours per semester. All placements will be within walking distance of the University Park campus or will be accessible on bus routes. For those who have their own transportation, placements in other early childhood settings might be possible. Teacher candidates will be observing in both infant and toddler settings as well as in pre-kindergarten settings in order to help them gain a deeper understanding of the childhood development continuum.

PLEASE NOTE: You should apply for your Child Abuse History  and Criminal Background Check clearances as a VOLUNTEER, which will allow you to complete the process free of charge. The following clearances are required in order to participate in C I 295A.

Please see the Necessary Clearances Page for more information on specific clearances.

Please note: All required clearances must be valid at the beginning of each field experience. It is also possible that some early childhood settings will require that the clearances be valid for the entire length of the field experience. Individual programs may require additional and varied documentation. Your supervisor or site will inform you if there are additional requirements for you to fulfill.

Pre-service teachers keep a log of hours in the field experience that is signed by the mentor teacher. The log contains weekly information for date(s) spent in the field experience, the number of hours spent in the field experience each week, and the mentor's signature for each week recorded.

The early field experience courses required for PK-4 (CI 295A) provide teacher candidates with the opportunity to spend 60 hours in an early childhood (PK-4). Placements are within walking distance of campus or on bus routes. CI 295 (7-12) asks teacher candidates to engage in 2 hours of tutoring per week as well as participate in two bus trips to visit school districts for a full day. Transportation is provided for the bus trips.

C I 295B is required for teacher candidates seeking admission to the 4-8 certification programs in English, Math, or Social Studies. C I 295B is a three-credit course that consists of two major components:

  1. A weekly seminar consisting of reading, discussion, lecture and reflective writing assignments
  2. Six hours per week spent observing and working with individual students or small groups of students in classrooms in grades 4 through 8 for a period of 10 weeks.

C I 295B Requirements

Seminars are held one afternoon a week. These seminars engage teacher candidates in reading, thinking, talking and writing about a wide range of issues and topics that are pertinent for individuals considering becoming educators at the middle level.

Teacher candidates will be placed in schools for their observation experience for one six-hour period once per week. All placements will be within walking distance of the University Park campus or will be accessible on bus routes. For those who have their own transportation, placements in other middle-level settings might be possible. In addition to observing and working with 4-8th grade students, teacher candidates may also be asked to assist with some clerical tasks.

The following clearances are required in order to participate in C I 295B:

  1. State Health Appraisal and Tuberculosis Test
  2. Federal Criminal History (FBI Fingerprints). Must be completed in Pennsylvania.
  3. Pennsylvania Child Abuse History (Act 151)
  4. Pennsylvania Criminal Background Check (Act 34)
  5. Arrest/ Conviction Report and Certification Form (Act 24)
  6. Guest/ Host Form

Please note: All required clearances must be valid at the beginning of each field experience. This means that the clearances must be less than one year old at the beginning of the field experience. It is also possible that some school districts will require that the clearances be valid for the entire length of the field experience. Your supervisor will inform you if that is the case.

For more detailed information about the required clearances, please visit the Clearance Section of the website.

Pre-service teachers keep a log of hours at the field experience that is signed by the mentor teacher. The log contains weekly information for date(s) spent in the field experience, the number of hours spent in the field experience each week, and the mentor's signature for each week recorded.

The early field experience courses required for PK-4 (CI 295B) provide teacher candidates with the opportunity to spend 60 hours in 4-8 grade classrooms. Placements are within walking distance of campus or on bus rout

Special Summer C I 295 Offerings

This two-week summer semester seminar provides Penn State students with a unique immersion experience in an urban public school environment. The experience will help participants begin to thoughtfully consider diversity in public school education. Weekdays will be spent in Philadelphia public school classrooms working with children and teachers. Evenings will include daily learning forums that provide participants with a chance to reflect on that day’s experiences and attend cultural events in the city. The weekend will be spent engaging in organized community service activities. The participant is responsible for paying the 3-credit tuition cost and a nonrefundable $400 program fee, as well as most meals and spending money. LaSalle University dormitory lodging and van transportation between University Park and Philadelphia are provided at no cost to participants. Transportation to schools is also provided at no additional cost to students. The clearances that are required are the same as those required for C I 295.

This two-week, 3-credit, Maymester course provides a unique rural school immersion experience. Students will spend the weekdays working with children and teachers in rural schools. The weekend and evenings will include community activities and seminar discussions. The course is available as CI 295C or CI 295A. Successful completion of this course equals 40 of the 80 required diversity hours. A $350 non-refundable class fee is required  in addition to summer tuition. The fee covers transportation between University Park and Bedford, transportation to and from the educational sites, lodging, some meals, and a t-shirt. Please contact Dr. Karen Eppley for more information. Full registration is contingent upon completion of clearances.

Students who have completed all other requirements for entry to the major during the spring of their sophomore year and who desire to participate in these special summer C I 295 experiences may be admitted to the major provisionally as part of the spring entrance to major pool, contingent upon successful completion of the special 295 summer experience.