Biology CSET

Discussion in 'Single Subject Tests' started by Barbera, Jul 18, 2008.

  1. Barbera

    Barbera Companion

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    Jul 18, 2008

    I am taking both of them tommorow. I may not pass.

    Can anyone recommend a good book to prepare? I am using a high school text but the cset practice questions on the web are much more difficult than the material I am studying.

    Any advice would be appreciated.

    I hope they don't ask me to describe meiosis or mitosis:eek:.
     
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  3. Malcolm

    Malcolm Enthusiast

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    Jul 18, 2008

    Do a search on "CSET Biology" in this forum and you should find plenty of information.

    The best "prep material" for this test I found was from the Orange County Department of Education. I still had to supplement it with other printer and on-line resources.

    If you know everything in a high school biology textbook tied to California content standards you know enough to pass.

    Meiosis and mitosis typically show up, sometimes even in the constructed response section.
     
  4. TeacherGroupie

    TeacherGroupie Moderator

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    Jul 19, 2008

    Try looking up terms you don't know on Answers.com. I seem to recall several fine explanations of meiosis that came to my attention that way.
     
  5. Barbera

    Barbera Companion

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    Jul 19, 2008

    That was awful. In all likelihood I will be taking those again.

    Quick question, to teach biology you must pass both bio cset exams right?

    Someone was telling me it was only the first one, the second exam is if you did not take general science csets. I thought the person telling me was wrong, but I have to admit the specialized bio cset was similar to the general science exam. Anyone know if this is true?
     
  6. Malcolm

    Malcolm Enthusiast

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    Jul 19, 2008

    You either take subtests 1, 2, and 3 and get a science (biology) credential which lets you teach biology courses plus introductory science courses, or you take subtest 3 and 4 and get a biology (specialized) credential which allows you to teach only biology courses.

    The questions for subtest 4 are taken from the biology domains of subtests 1 and 2.

    So how about doing a brain dump on the test you took for the benefit of others preparing for this subtest? Just don't reveal any exact questions.
     
  7. Barbera

    Barbera Companion

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    Jul 20, 2008

    Like other people said, ecology and evolution are a big part, I also felt that genetic and cells made up the more difficult questions. I do think focusing on evolution and eco would be a mistake. I was asked a question about sampling, data analysis that was extremely tough.
     
  8. Malcolm

    Malcolm Enthusiast

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    The question on sampling and data analysis brings up a good point. One cannot prepare just for what is called out in Part I of the Subtest Description, one must also prepare for what is on Part II which covers topics like experimental design, observation and data collection, data analysis, etc.
     
  9. BASUDHA MUKHERJ

    BASUDHA MUKHERJ Rookie

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    Jul 21, 2008

    How do I study for that part II please?

    -Basudha
     
  10. Malcolm

    Malcolm Enthusiast

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    IMHO one prepares for Part II the same as for Part I. For me, that would mean using the bullets in Part II as a starting point, filling in with the referenced California Content Standards for Science, and expanding from there until I was satisfied I was up to speed. Note that Part II gets heavily into the Investigation and Experimentation Content Standards which are separate from any particular science for grades 9-12. For the Safety component of Part II try the Science Safety Handbook for California Public Schools.

    In my case, this did not add much to my study time. I have had enough lab classes in school that much of this was second nature. Your mileage may vary.
     
  11. crf

    crf Rookie

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    Jul 29, 2008

    For a credential in Biology/life science I need to take subsets 1,2 and 3? I thought I only need to take subset 3?
     
  12. TeacherGroupie

    TeacherGroupie Moderator

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    Jul 29, 2008

    Not so.

    If you want the Science (Specialized) credential in biology, you take CSET Science III and IV, and for each you specify the Biology subtest (sorry I don't recall the ordinal subtest numbers). That entitles you to teach biology and only biology. It might be more specialized than you want.

    To teach biology and also general science, which will probably make you a little more marketable, you want the general Science credential with specialization in biology, and you take the general science subtests I and II plus subtest III in biology.
     
  13. teresaglass

    teresaglass Groupie

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    Jul 29, 2008

    A good AP Biology Book and the Schaum's Outline for Biology are good resources.
     
  14. Barbera

    Barbera Companion

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    Oct 28, 2008

    I passed.

    I just would like to reiterate, be sure to study cell structures and functions, macromolecules, genetics in addition to ecology and evolution. I have heard people say the test is all eco and evo and I think that is misleading. I did not do a count of the questions but a significant amount of the test is questions not categorized as eco and evo and the more cerebral questions come form outside of these 2 categories.
     
  15. TeacherGroupie

    TeacherGroupie Moderator

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    Oct 28, 2008

    Congratulations, Barbera! And thanks for the insights. It's the case with other CSETs, broadly, that the versions of a given subtest may differ in emphasis, and what you've said suggests that that could be the case here as well.
     

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