So is it just me, or is credentialling (In CA at least) total nonsense?

Discussion in 'General Education' started by ForGod$ake, Feb 17, 2015.

  1. ForGod$ake

    ForGod$ake New Member

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    Feb 17, 2015

    I'm slightly over half way through my credential program (through brandman) and I'm about to go absolutely crazy. The classes are tedious, full of worthless acronyms and busy work. I've learned more about teaching during subbing in any given week. I've also found that it's quite easy to blag the work and skip out on much of the reading. I hate to sound cynical.... but am I the only one who thinks this? Most of the teachers I've befriended largely hated their programs too..

    :help::help::help:

    Any thoughts?
     
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  3. Mrs.Christie

    Mrs.Christie Rookie

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    Feb 17, 2015

    I agree and that's largely why I left my program years ago. It is so hard to sit through the politically correct BS.
     
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  4. ForGod$ake

    ForGod$ake New Member

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    I mean, I gotta do it, gotta jump through those many hoops... but ****ing hell...
     
  5. yellowdaisies

    yellowdaisies Fanatic

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    Hmm... I actually learned a lot from my credential program. I went to a Cal State and got my master's at the same time. (16 months) It was a great experience. There was a cohort of 26 of us that went through all our classes together - I still miss that camaraderie. Was there stuff they should have focused on more? Sure. Was there stuff they could have (should have) skipped? Yep. But overall, it was valuable. And those acronyms? You actually do need to know a lot of those. As with most things in life, I think sometimes you get out of it what you put into it...

    Now, what's NOT valuable? TPAs (or PACT, depending on school. Same waste of time) and BTSA. Those are a total and complete waste of time.
     
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  6. ForGod$ake

    ForGod$ake New Member

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    Feb 18, 2015

    Ha, so even someone who got a lot out of their credential still hated the TPAs? Oh goodness.


    My course is largely online, and I just find a great amount of it very tedious. Fortunately, I get something out of all this. I understand the important acronyms, I know what resources to look for, I just... I'm not sure. It's all just very tedious.
     
  7. Bunnie

    Bunnie Devotee

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    Feb 18, 2015

    Online courses are way more tedious than going to a traditional class. My masters was a hybrid of online classes and traditional ones. I hated the online courses. I learned so much more being in class.
     
  8. gr3teacher

    gr3teacher Phenom

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    Feb 18, 2015

    Different state, but I got a lot out of my credential classes in New York State.

    For what it's worth though... same school, same program, but my master's level classes were far better than the undergrad classes. Like... better enough that the undergrad professors should seriously have been embarrassed about themselves. Perhaps not coincidentally, most of my master's courses were taught by active or recently retired teachers, while most of my undergrad courses were taught by career researchers and college professors.
     
  9. gr3teacher

    gr3teacher Phenom

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    Also, if I ever see that ****ing Bloom's Taxonomy Triangle again.... ever... I may just snap.
     
  10. Pashtun

    Pashtun Fanatic

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    It was a waste for me.
     
  11. YoungTeacherGuy

    YoungTeacherGuy Phenom

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    Feb 18, 2015

    I didn't have to do the TPAs (I think that requirement came a few years after I became credentialed).

    BTSA, however, was the bane of my existence!!! :dizzy:
     
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  12. teacherguy111

    teacherguy111 Cohort

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    Feb 18, 2015

    Is this for people that have another degree and are moving into teaching as career changers?
     
  13. TeacherGroupie

    TeacherGroupie Moderator

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    California's credential programs are pretty much all post-baccalaureate, teacherguy111.
     
  14. Rockguykev

    Rockguykev Connoisseur

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    Feb 18, 2015

    can confirm, utter and complete waste of time. I had one good class my entire time and that was a social studies methods class taught by an actual in-the-classroom teacher. The rest, and the two years of BTSA were pointless.
     
  15. yellowdaisies

    yellowdaisies Fanatic

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    Feb 19, 2015

    One of my masters professors actually contacted the commission on teacher credentialing about how useless TPAs are. :lol: So my opinion was shared by the faculty, lol!

    I agree with this. I think it's a personality thing, too. I know I wouldn't have enjoyed online nearly as much, and probably wouldn't have gotten as much out of it. I like in person learning and connections a lot better.

    Me, too! I can't imagine being taught by people who haven't been in a classroom possibly ever...that doesn't even make sense.:dizzy:
     
  16. Geologygirl

    Geologygirl Comrade

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    Feb 19, 2015

    Hahaha I thought that to until this year when I got my first teaching job. Most of our PD meetings are on Blooms Taxonomy and remakes of it, and teaching to level 4 or 5 so students reach "a deeper understanding" It never goes away entirely.
     
  17. Peregrin5

    Peregrin5 Maven

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    Agreed with everyone. My credentialing program was pointless, and taught me NOTHING that I took back into the classroom.

    Imo, there should have been a much larger focus on classroom management, which is the NUMBER ONE thing that greatly affects new teachers and the achievement of the class, but they had one short class on it, where all the teacher did was show us a video of an inner city classroom which was pointless.

    The TPAS were COMPLETELY a waste and cost me extra money because I had to retake one.

    I actually didn't mind BTSA. It seemed useful to me, because it made me choose a skill, figure out how to implement it in my classroom, evaluate myself on that skill and to look at student work as evidence for my evaluation. It was helpful reflection and action research.
     
  18. TeacherWhoRuns

    TeacherWhoRuns Companion

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    Feb 19, 2015

    I didn't feel my teacher prep was a waste. I thought there was some pretty good information there, although my math teaching methods class was taught by an instructor with a heavy, heavy accent. We'd have to meet up and compare notes afterward to try to figure out who got what pieces about what he was trying to say.

    BTSA, on the other hand, is a fly buzzing around my head that I'd be happy to douse with poison to make it die. The concept behind it seems sound, but in reality, my county is a mess of miscommunication. We have constantly been instructed to do things one way, then when we turn them in, they're sent back and we're told to do them another way. Our lead mentor blames the county leadership when he's talking to the mentors, then blames the mentors when he's talking to the program participants. There are constant threats that if we don't do everything A++++ that we'll have to pay out of pocket for an extension at thousands of dollars. It's much more stressful than it needs to be, and I think that's a result of some of the personalities involved.

    Since I'm only on a temporary contract, I'm just praying for a job next year so I can finish it and get on with my life and career!
     
  19. teachsph2008

    teachsph2008 Companion

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    Feb 19, 2015

    I got my degree from Cal State, but did not get credential in California. I did however, do an internship in California. That was very helpful. I also got the most from my teachers who taught high school in day and Cal State at night.

    I'm not quite sure what BTSA is, but from I can tell, I don't want to know lol. I do remember hating CSET and RICA.
     
  20. gr3teacher

    gr3teacher Phenom

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    From what I can tell, BTSA is some sort of new teacher orientation program whose primary purpose is making new teachers absolutely hate the education field.
     
  21. jen12

    jen12 Devotee

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    BTSA is a two year induction program required for CA teachers to go from preliminary credentials that only last five years, to a cleared credential.

    It's gotten incredibly tricky, because you have to do it, but not all districts offer the program, and many won't hire anyone who hasn't completed it.:dizzy:
     
  22. El sol

    El sol Rookie

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    Feb 20, 2015

    I wouldn't say total nonsense. The program itself offers a lot of valuable information which many new teachers wouldn't get by themselves. The support itself varies, but the teacher is to use all available resources and not see it as an additional burden.

    BTSA itself also varies from district to district. There are some out there that are just straight from the text. There are others which are more practical but still meet the requirements of the program.
     
  23. WarriorPrncss

    WarriorPrncss Companion

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    Feb 20, 2015

    So far I am half way through my first semester in my credential program. Most of what I've done so far feels like busy work as I've gotten A LOT of the information just by not being a Liberal Studies major. A lot of things we're learning are Psychology based and I have a degree in that so, for me the activities feel tedious--- ESPECIALLY the activites I get through only to find that I don't have an assignment to turn in. LOTS of reading... (Lots of skimming...)

    The TPAs are going to kill me. I have one due March 16th... I was told 20 pages MINIMUM. :eek:

    And I know some places let you pay to re-take-- my program doesn't have that option. You pass or you don't continue in the program.
     
  24. John Lee

    John Lee Groupie

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    The biggest problem with BTSA, is putting extra stuff on the plate of someone who is already overwhelmed with other stuff.
     
  25. justwanttoteach

    justwanttoteach Cohort

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    The TPAs are going to kill me. I have one due March 16th... I was told 20 pages MINIMUM. :eek:

    And I know some places let you pay to re-take-- my program doesn't have that option. You pass or you don't continue in the program.[/QUOTE]

    I have recently just completed TPA 1,2,3 and am inrocess of finishing the 4th. Don't panic, they are tedious and repetitive but not difficult. Its 20page minimum only because there are charts/boxes to fill out. You will do fine. Your psych background will help you.
     
  26. ForGod$ake

    ForGod$ake New Member

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    Feb 23, 2015

    So the TPAs are tedious and awful, but not actually difficult? That's nice to know.


    Anyone have any hints on the whole credential portfolio thing? They have the 5 area standard thinga-ma-giggers...but how many assignments per area should there be? Two, three, more? It was never made clear at all....


    Thanks for all the responses! It's helpful to hear about people in the same (or different) boat as me.


    I sub and tutor... and I get more out of that in any given week than I do in months of credentialling....
     
  27. yellowdaisies

    yellowdaisies Fanatic

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    Feb 23, 2015

    TPAs and BTSA are both tedious and awful, but not difficult. They are actually super similar (except during BTSA you are working full time as a new teacher and are incredibly overwhelmed and don't want to spend all your free time on busy work.....) Some BTSA programs are worse than others. I know someone who has to go to a 3 hour meeting at the district office nearly EVERY WEEK for BTSA. Nuts.

    I think the credential portfolio is specific to your school. I've never heard of that.
     
  28. TeacherWhoRuns

    TeacherWhoRuns Companion

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    Feb 25, 2015

    Just came from a BTSA meeting. They are getting more ridiculous each time.

    The person in charge in our county seems to be a massive control freak. There are mentors, lead mentors and a group of people whose job it is to assess our work, but she has overruled them all on their directions and reversed their approvals on several occasions and sent back everything to us to do again. I'm hearing that part of the problem is that she's trying to make changes, but not communicating them to everyone. Everyone is frustrated and it's just oozing out and making it incredibly stressful for everyone. They also threaten at every single meeting that if we don't do everything to their standards, we'll have to do an extension at our own cost.

    Tonight we had a major project due, and on the due date, they're explaining how to word things. For some reason the verbiage is more important than the content. I thought I had a handle on this job. I even thought I was pretty good at it, but this BTSA stuff really is disheartening.

    Honestly, if I was younger and hadn't already been out in other employment fields to experience their comparative crap, I'd probably decide it was all BS and run away screaming. As it is, I'm just trying to endure and get through it.
     

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