Master's in Science Education Program

The MA in Science Education is a flexible program designed for K-12 teachers involved or interested in science education, and for science educators and specialists working in informal or outdoor education. The curriculum is designed to augment and broaden an educator’s background in science content as well as increase academic proficiency and professional competence in science education pedagogy.

Beginning in Fall 2010, qualified students who have earned a multiple or single subject credential at San Jose State University may apply up to 9 units of select credential coursework from SJSU’s College of Education and 3 units of select credential coursework from SJSU’s College of Science to the MA Science Education degree. An additional 6 units completed post-graduate may also be applied to the MA Science Education at the discretion of the student's project or thesis director. Students who transfer units into the program can complete the degree in two to four semesters.  

The Science Education Program's Graduate Advisor is Dr. Cassandra Paul. You can reach her at

How to apply to the Master's Program:

Students applying for admission to MA Science Education program will interface with both the Science Education program AND the University's Graduate Application and Evaluation program (GAPE). Here's a brief guide to help you know what the requirements and procedures are for each. We strongly encourage you to go to the GAPE website for prospective students for important additional information.

Application Deadlines:

    Application Deadline Final Document Deadline
Spring 2016 Domestic Applicants April 1, 2016 April 20, 2016
  International Applicants April 1, 2016 April 20, 2016

1. Requirements for Admission.

The MA Science Education is open to qualified science educators from different content backgrounds. However, before the MA degree may be conferred, a student must demonstrate subject matter competency in science and have "classified" standing. Depending on your bachelor's degree or your science subject matter competency, you may be admitted as either a classified or a conditionally classified student.

Requirements for Admission to Classified Standing

Minimum requirements for admission to the Graduate Division are in the catalog. In addition, classified standing requires the following:

  • An undergraduate major with a grade point average of 2.75;
  • Demonstrated subject-matter competency in science, either through a baccalaureate degree in science, or by passing the California Subject Examinations for Teachers (CSET) Science Subtests I and II (test codes 118 and 119);
  • Evidence of appropriate goal(s) and commitment to graduate-level study as demonstrated by a letter of intent written by the applicant and letters of recommendation from two or more persons qualified to judge the applicant's potential as a graduate student;
  • Approval of the graduate advisor and/or graduate committee.
  • We do not require the GRE.

Requirements for Admission to Conditionally Classified Standing

A student who meets all requirements for admission to classified standing except subject matter competency in general science may be admitted to conditionally classified standing. Classified standing may be achieved by demonstration of subject matter competency, as evidenced by an undergraduate degree in a science discipline or through successful completion of the California Subject Examinations for Teachers (CSET) Science Subtests I and II (test codes 118 and 119). Lower division and/or general education coursework used to achieve subject matter competency may not be used for credit towards the master's degree.

2. Check the deadlines for applications and supporting documents!

Your best source of information is the calendar on the GAPE website. The MA Science Education program is listed under College of Science - Science Education.

Note: The MA Science Education program currently accepts students in the Fall semester only. However, if you wish to begin your graduate coursework in the spring, consider enrolling through Open University. The University permits students to transfer up to 6 units from select courses taken through Open University. For more information, see our FAQ page.

3. Fill out and submit the Application for Admission.

Applications may be obtained from

4. Write and submit a letter of intent.

This should describe your interests in science education, background and current goals. The letter should be sent to the Graduate Coordinator in Science Education.

Graduate Coordinator
Science Education Program
San Jose State University
San Jose, CA 95192-0099

5. Arrange for original copies of your transcripts to be sent to GAPE:

Graduate Admissions and Program Evaluations
1 Washington Square
San Jose State University
San Jose, CA 95192-0017

It is essential that you follow up with GAPE to ensure your transcripts are received. An alternative to having the transcripts sent from your previous schools to SJSU is to have your official transcripts sent in a sealed, unopened envelope to you directly. Leave these in their sealed, unopened envelopes - you may bring them in person to the front desk at GAPE in the Student Services Center (first floor of the 10th Street Garage at S. 10th and E. San Fernando) to request that they be added to your application file.

6. Arrange for two letters of recommendation to be sent to the Graduate Coordinator in Science Education:

Graduate Coordinator
Science Education Program
San Jose State University
San Jose, CA 95192-0099

7. See the GAPE website for information on tracking the status of your application.

Please note that the Science Education program cannot make a determination until your application is complete and it is forwarded to us from GAPE.