PLACE Corps members begin their two-year commitment in June with a Welcome Orientation, their first two graduate level classes, team building activities, faith-filled community living, and Catholic school visitations, followed by a retreat, all designed to support and inspire. Summer classes and workshops are designed as intensive beginning teacher support induction to prepare candidates immediately for full-time teaching.
As a general rule, candidates are enrolled in two 3-unit graduate courses each semester (summer, fall, spring) for the two year period, along with an additional 1-unit field experience class during fall and spring semesters.
Candidates enrolled in the traditional Master of Arts + Preliminary Teaching Credential program attend classes on Saturdays to allow them to be fully present at their school sites as teachers. Classes throughout the program are offered in a hybrid format (60% face-to-face and 40% online). Candidates who already hold a teaching credential or certificate that are enrolled in one of the two alternate master degree programs (reading instruction or educational studies) take classes on weekdays in the late afternoons or evenings. These classes are generally 100% face-to-face with each class offered once per week (fall/spring semesters) either from 4:30-7:00 pm or 7:15-9:45 pm and twice per week during a summer semester.
The PLACE Corps academic program is comprehensive and includes all the coursework and field experience required to obtain a master's degree and a preliminary teaching credential. As of September 2016, the State of California is requiring all universities to address newly approved teacher preparation program standards for candidates that teach full-time (termed 'intern' teachers). Once reviewed and approved by the State, the sequence of required professional coursework will be available for review online. As a general rule, most combination master degree with teaching credential programs fall within the 32 graduate unit range (average of ten 3-unit courses plus at least two 1-unit field experience observation classes). Course descriptions, sequence, and unit details will be available prior to the start of Summer Session II.