Transferring from Another State

In California, a Pupil Personnel Services Credential authorizes individuals to practice as a school counselor. Those who have completed (or partially completed) their professional preparation program outside of California must satisfy California requirements before being allowed to practice. Below are the requirements for individuals who completed their program outside of California on or after July 1, 2004:

  1. A baccalaureate degree or higher from a regionally-accredited college or university
  2. Complete a professional preparation program of post-baccalaureate degree study consisting of a minimum of 48 semester units (or 30 semester units if the program was completed prior to July 1, 2004) specializing in school counseling, including field experience. Programs accredited by the Council for Accreditation of Counseling and Related Educational Programs (CACREP) meet this requirement.  For list of approved schools, click here.
  • The program must have included a minimum of 600 clock hours (or 450 clock hours if the program was completed prior to July 1, 2004) of supervised field experience with school-aged children in a public school at two of three levels (elementary, middle and high school)
  • Up to 150 of the required 600 clock hours must have been devoted to issues of diversity
  • A letter verifying field experience must be on original, official letterhead from the college or university's education department
  • Applicants must verify eligibility for the equivalent credential authorization in the state where the program was completed. A photocopy of the out-of-state credential is acceptable verification of this requirement, as is a letter from the issuing state's licensing agency
  • If the out-of-state program does not fit this pattern, the applicant must contact a California college or university with a Commission-approved school counseling program for an evaluation and formal recommendation
  1. Verification of a basic skills proficiency - typically by passing the California Basic Educational Skills Test (CBEST) with a total score of at least 123 (41 in each three sections: reading, writing and math.) More information on this requirement can be found here.
  2. Complete the LiveScan fingerprint process - a copy of the form can be found here.
Additional information regarding reciprocity for those prepared outside of California can be found by going to the California Commission on Teacher Credentialing website. You may also contact the Commission directly at (800) 921-2682.