Secondary Education


Secondary Education: Help prepare the next generation for a life of discovery and scientific inquiry. Qualified instructors of the physical sciences are highly sought after. 

Download a program sheet here:

Secondary Education Program Sheet

Macaulay Honors College Secondary Education Program Sheet


Concentration Faculty

Prof. Richard Steinberg

City College of New York graduated 5 well-prepared physics teachers in the 2016-17 academic year. To recognize this achievement, City College of New York will receive “The 5+ Club” award from the Physics Teacher Education Coalition (PhysTEC), a joint project of the American Physical Society (APS) and the American Association of Physics Teachers (AAPT).  The City College of New York is one of nine universities nationwide to join 2016-2017's 5+ Club. 

"The 5+ Club" is designed to recognize institutions that graduate 5 or more physics teachers in a given year. The great majority of institutions graduate less than two physics teachers a year, and the most common number of graduates is zero.1 Thus, graduating 5 or more physics teachers a year is a significant achievement, helping to address the severe national shortage of high school physics teachers.

Professor Richard Steinberg has a joint appointment with the School of Education and the Department of Physics at CCNY and directs physics teacher education.  City College offers multiple routes to Teacher Certification in Secondary Physics. Undergraduate Physics majors can complete a minor in Science Education. Those with a Bachelor’s Degree with a major in physics can complete a Masters Degree in Science Education, which simultaneously fulfills certification requirements. Those with an advanced degree in Physics can complete a certification only graduate program. In addition, Middle School Science Teacher candidates can pursue certification at City College, where there is support for understanding a cross section of science content knowledge, including physics / physical science.

In all programs, in addition to knowing physics content, there is an emphasis on the process of science, how we know what we know, research on how students learn physics, and effective physics pedagogy. With Grant Support from NSF as well as local, state, and national Departments of Education, City College has a long history of supporting in-service and pre-service physics teachers in our urban context.

More about teaching and physics:

Recruiting High School Physics Teachers (APS NEWS, American Physical Society, January, 2016)

"High school physics teaching is a career path that has many attractive features for students who find their personal goals will not be well served by the 10 years of additional preparation (Ph.D. and postdocs) required to secure an academic position, and the dramatic personal pressures placed on individuals who pursue this path."


"The physics teacher preparation program at City College of New York addresses the needs of a large urban school system through a strong collaboration between the physics and secondary education departments." Transforming the Preparation of Physics Teachers: A Call to Action, 2012, page 68.  2013TTEP


The City College of New York was one of only 11 colleges and universities nationwide cited for excellence in physics teacher preparation, according to a new national study. The report, produced by the National Task Force on Teacher Education in Physics (T-TEP), pointed out that physics has a greater shortage of teachers than any other science discipline.