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Home > Academics > Divisions > Education > Secondary Education and Youth Services > Degrees and Programs > Science Education
Degrees and Programs

Science Adolescent Education

Dear Prospective Candidate:

Welcome to the Secondary Science Teacher Education Program (SSTEP) webpage at Queens College of the City University of New York.  This prospectus contains information on our overall program philosophy, goals and other relevant information on science teacher education at Queens College We hope that you will find it helpful in making informed decisions about your studies in science teacher education at Queens College .

Detailed information about teaching and learning resources, faculty, student community, financial aid, academic programs, regulations and recreational facilities can be found in the Queens College Undergraduate and Graduate Bulletins, which can also be obtained from the following addresses:

Undergraduate Bulletin

Queens College Admissions Office
Jefferson Hall 117
Queens College
Flushing, New York 11367
Tel: 718-997-5614
Fax: 718-997-5617

Graduate Bulletin

Office of Graduate Studies and Research
Jefferson Hall 105
Queens College 
Flushing, New York 11367
Tel: 718-997-5200
Fax: 718-997-5193

The SSTEP is interested in working with you and helping you achieve your academic goals.  You are therefore encouraged to contact us with your questions, concerns and needs. We will be glad to assist you.

Secondary Science Teacher Education Program Philosophy

The Secondary Science Teacher Education Program (SSTEP) subscribes to the belief that all students have the capacity to learn and should have the opportunity to do so.  It is our belief that one of the best ways to teach and learn science is for teachers and students to engage in scientific inquiry and activities that have meaning and relevance to their lives.  Scientific inquiry and activities enable students to construct their own scientific knowledge, acquire science process skills and dispositions.  In addition, they provide opportunities for students to engage in reflective dialogue to validate what they have learned.  We believe that the pursuit of scientific knowledge does not take place in a vacuum, but within a dynamic historical, social, cultural, economic and political context.  Accordingly, science teachers must not only be armed with science content and pedagogical knowledge, but a deep understanding of the contexts in which science is practiced.

Program Alignment with Professional Teaching Standards for Certification.

All the programs in science education at Queens College are aligned with the Core Values of the Education Unit "promoting Equity, Excellence, and Ethics in urban schools and communities." Specifically, the Education Unit is committed to preparing teachers and educational professionals who:
  • Build inclusive communities that nurture and challenge all learners (Equity)
  • Demonstrate professionalism, scholarship, efficacy, and evidence-based and practice (Excellence)
  • Value diversity, democracy, and social justice (Ethics)

Through the exploration of science as well as through the exploration of exemplary practices in curriculum design, adaptation, and instruction, these programs also include the Standards for Reading Professionals established jointly by the National Council for the Accreditation of Teacher Education (NCATE) and the National Science Teachers Association (NSTA).  Each science certification program in SSTEP is nationally recognized (NCATE).

Degrees and Certificate Programs:

Undergraduate: Leading to Initial Certification Program

*Scroll up for full program description

Students must major in an approved science (Biology, Geology, Physics or Chemistry) with a 2.75 average in the content area and complete 24 credits in education to earn the minor.

Upon satisfactory completion of the program, graduates will earn a NYS Initial Certification license to teach a field of science in grades 7-12.

Post-Baccalaureate Graduate: Initial Certificate or Advanced Certificate Program 

*Scroll up for full program description

The Post-Baccalaureate Advanced Certificate Program is designed for graduate students with strong science preparation who have little or no professional courses in education.  It consists of pre-Masters graduate education courses that culminate in a semester of student teaching at the middle and high school levels.  Upon satisfactory completion of the program, graduates will earn a NYS Initial Certificate license to teach a field of science in grades 7-12.
Admission Requirements

To be admitted to the Post-Baccalaureate Program in Secondary Science Education, candidates must meet the following criteria :

• Hold an undergraduate degree in a science discipline with a minimum GPA of 3.0, or have 21 credits or more in a science discipline with a minimum GPA of 3.0 in science.

• Submit a statement of purpose or essay on why s/he wants to pursue graduate studies in secondary science education at Queens College.

• Submit 2 letters of recommendation.
Program of Study
Candidates admitted to the post-baccalaureate program in secondary science education take 21 credits in secondary education: SEYS 536, 700, 552, 562, 572.2, 572.4 and 582.
Post-Baccalaureate Advanced Certificate Courses 

Note: The fieldwork provides candidates with the opportunity to observe and reflect on what they have learned in their science and education courses in the classroom. Candidates are required to spend a minimum of 100 hours of documented fieldwork experiences in middle and high schools and/or other sites prior to ICE.  Student teaching begins with ICE (SEYS 572.2) in the fall. The teaching experience transitions in the spring to a more intense culminating experience at a different level school setting (SEYS 572.4).  Most candidates select middle school for ICE followed by high school placement the following semester.  Students must have completed a minimum of 36 credits of science with a minimum of 30 credits of the 36 credits in one science discipline to become certified. Candidates must also take and pass all the required New York State Teacher Certification Examinations (LAST, ATS-W and CST) for Initial Certification.  In addition, candidates must complete 4 seminars mandated by New York State for teachers and have credit for one year of language other than English. Upon satisfactory completion of program and state certification requirements, candidates will be recommended for New York State Initial Certification by Queens College. Candidates must earn a minimum grade of B in all education courses to be recommended for certification.

Advanced Certification – MSED Program (Master of Science in Secondary Education)

Program Description

The M.S. in Secondary Education in Biology Education, Chemistry Education, Earth Science/Geology Education or Physics Education is designed for teachers who have an Initial New York State Teaching Certificate in a science discipline. The program consists of 30 graduate credits divided equally between advanced professional education courses and graduate courses in the traditional sciences. 
Admission Requirements

To be admitted to the M.S. in Secondary Science Education Program candidates must meet the following criteria:
    •Hold an undergraduate degree in science or science education with a minimum GPA
     of 3.0.

    •Have an NYSED Initial Certificate in a field of science (grades 7-12)

    •Complete an application for graduate studies to Queens College. 

    •Submit 2 letters of recommendation and an essay.
Program of Study

Candidates admitted to the M.S. in Secondary Science Education Program take 15 credits in SEYS 701 + level graduate education courses and 15 credits in graduate science courses in biology, chemistry, geology or physics. The selection of science courses must be approved by appropriate science and science education advisors. 



 Office Information



 Program Coordinators


David Laurenson (SPIRITAS) 
Powdermaker Hall 150-P
Telephone: (718) 997-5194

Brian Murfin
Powdermaker Hall 150-P
Telephone: (718) 997-5066




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