Basic Skills Proficiency

Passage of the California Basic Educational Skills Test (CBEST) or its equivalent is required of all public school teachers, counselors, and administrators in California to verify basic skills proficiency.  CBEST is administered by National Evaluation Systems, Inc.  Test schedules, test sites, registration, and other important information is available online at the CBEST web site.

Paper-based tests are administered six times per year, every other month beginning in February. Computer-based tests are available by appointment, year-round, Monday through Saturday (excluding holidays), on a first-come, first-served basis. Computer-based testing will be offered at numerous test centers in California and over 225 test centers nationwide.

For all public school teachers, counselors, and administrators, exemptions to this requirement are:

  • Renewal, reissuance, or upgrading of existing non-emergency credentials, certificates, or permits unless it is specifically indicated as a renewal requirement on the document
  • An additional credential, certificate, or permit to teach when the applicant holds a non-emergency California teaching credential which required a bachelor's degree

For Multiple Subject candidates ONLY, the Basic Skills Requirement may be fulfilled by passage of all three subtests of the CSET, Multiple Subjects exam (101, 102, 103), plus the Writing Skills subtest (145).

Official verification: A student will submit the original score report at the time of admission to the program to the Credential Office. This original will be scanned and returned promptly. It is important that candidates maintain all official documentation of exam results and other credential documentation for future verification purposes.