California State University, Long Beach
Policy Statement
April 26, 1993


Approved by the Teacher Preparation Committee on December 2, 1992
Approved by the Academic Senate on March 11, 1993
Approved by the President on April 15, 1993

Section I: Initial Screening

1. In addition to meeting all other criteria for admission to a credential program, each candidate for a teaching credential will be interviewed by a faculty member involved in that credential program.

2. Following the interview, the faculty member will either:
(a) recommend that the candidate should be admitted to the program; or
(b) express concerns about the candidate's professional aptitude, interpersonal skills, and/or baccalaureate-level command of spoken English. The criteria for determining baccalaureate-level command of spoken English are spelled out in Section IV, below.

3. If the interviewer concludes that the candidate's oral communication skills might reasonably be expected to interfere significantly with the candidate's ability to communicate in a classroom, the credential program designee will inform the candidate and submit a written referral for assessment, on a form approved by the Teacher Preparation Committee, to the Speech/Language Assessment Committee. If all other criteria for admission have been met, the candidate shall be considered to be admitted to the program, subject to the condition that the oral communication skills requirement also be satisfied.

4. Faculty in pre-requisite courses, such as EDEL 360 or EDEL 380, are also encouraged to identify students whose oral communication skills might require formal assessment and refer them to the Speech/Language Assessment Committee.

Section II: Assessment

1. A three-member Speech/Language Assessment Committee shall be responsible for administering the assessment and recommending a plan of remediation for those students found to be in need of corrective measures according to the criteria in Section IV. This committee shall be a standing committee reporting to the Multiple-Subject and Single-Subject Credential Programs. The members shall be nominated by the Departments of Communicative Disorders, Linguistics, and Speech Communication, respectively, and confirmed by vote of the Teacher Preparation committee. The members shall serve staggered two year terms and shall be eligible for reappointment. The Office of the Provost will be responsible for compensating the members with assigned time if the workload of the committee is found to justify such compensation.

2. When students are referred as a result of the initial screening in Section I of this document, the Speech/Language Assessment Committee will conduct an initial interview/assessment.

3. If the committee determines that a candidate does NOT have a speech or language difficulty that would significantly interfere with the candidate's ability to communicate in a classroom, then the candidate shall be deemed to have passed the oral communication skills requirement.

4. If the committee determines that a candidate DOES have a speech or language difficulty that would significantly interfere with the candidate's ability to communicate in a classroom, then the committee shall specify a plan of remediation, including actions to be taken, a time-line to be followed, and an estimate of the probability of success.

a. Upon completing the plan of remediation, the candidate shall return to the Speech/Language Assessment Committee for a final interview/assessment.

b. After the final assessment, the committee shall report to the appropriate credential program whether the candidate has passed the oral communication skills requirement.

5. If a candidate disagrees with the process followed by the Speech/Language Assessment Committee or with a finding by the Committee that the candidate has a speech or language difficulty that would significantly interfere with the candidate's ability to communicate in a classroom, then the candidate may within ten working days submit a written appeal to the director of the appropriate credential program.

a. There shall be an Appeal Panel Pool consisting of five faculty members from the various credential programs and several school district professionals. The members of the pool shall be selected by the credential programs at the start of each academic year and shall serve one-year terms.

b. An appeal panel to hear the appeal of a given candidate shall consist of two faculty members and one school district professional selected on a rotating basis from the Appeal Panel Pool.

c. Within ten working days of the receipt of an appeal from a candidate, an appeal panel shall be selected from the appeal panel pool. The appeal panel shall receive the candidate's written appeal, the candidate's recommendation letters and statement of professional goals and objectives, and the assessment of the Speech/Language Assessment Committee. The appeal panel shall interview the candidate within ten working days from the time it is formed, adjourn to executive session, and then make its decision. The decision of the appeal panel is final.

Section III: Continued Screening

Following the initial screening or assessment, or during prerequisite courses such as EDEL 380 and EDSS 300, the oral communication skills of all teacher education students will be continuously screened by the credential program faculty, including student-teaching supervisors. If this continuous screening detects students with unremediated and/or previously undiagnosed oral communication difficulties, the student shall be referred to the Speech/Language Assessment Committee in accordance with Section I, paragraph 3.

Section IV: Criteria

1. Any language disfluency or disability must significantly interfere with classroom communication to be a basis for referral or failure to pass the oral-communication skills requirement. While regional and social dialects or non-native features of English may be present, these should not be construed as a basis for referral or failure to pass the oral skills requirement unless they significantly interfere with potential job performance in classroom communication. Students may not be discriminated against on the basis of a disability for which a prospective employer could reasonably be expected to make an accommodation.

2. Students shall be evaluated according to the following criteria:


Communicative: Demonstrates ability to get the message across in an appropriate manner. Maintains dialogue, answering questions appropriately with sufficient information and with little or no hesitation. Seeks clarification if necessary and when appropriate.

Fluent: Demonstrates smoothness and readiness of speech. Speaks with ease and without verbal distractions. Is easily understood. (While regional and social dialect or non-native features of English may be present, these do not interfere with communication.)


Lacks Sufficient Communicative Ability: May be able to exchange views or provide some information, but with hesitations, errors, and/or an inappropriate style which detracts significantly from the flow of the dialogue. Provides insufficient information unless prompted by the interviewer. Has difficulty understanding questions or prompts and yet fails to seek clarification.

Lacks Fluency: Demonstrates deficiencies in language forms or communicative style which significantly interfere with communication.

Effective: Fall 1993