Discussion in 'Basic Skills Tests' started by suriyan.r, Apr 22, 2006.
Apr 22, 2006
Just curious, if anyone other than me took this exam which was held early today - April 22nd 2006.
I took it today, on April 22nd, in Glendale, California. It was my first (hopefully, the only) attempt. What about you?
Good luck to both of us!
I took it in Long Beach, California. It was my first attempt. English was hard! Was that your experience also?
Hey, remember we can't discuss details about the test! It might give other people that are planning to take the CBEST this year an idea of what essays' topics are going to be about. :sorry:
Oops! I did not know that rule! Sorry about that!
That was the first thing you signed on the answer sheet, a statement that you will not disclose any information about the content of this test. And there is also a note about that on this forum, and on CBEST website!
Well, honestly, I was very surprised to see how so many people don't follow or don't read the rules: so many had cell phones on them today! What's up with that???
Duly noted. No need to dwell on this!
Hello chokita and ambenico,
I took it in Daly city (bay area). Its my first attempt too. I did find Reading comprehension a tad difficult. I hope I scrape through !
In the sample test in the NES site, I scored about 44 on 50. Compared to the real test, I think the sample ones were 1/2 as difficult. With that ratio, I will probably get 22 right, which might translate to a fail !
Wishing you all the luck, and wishing myself some too.
To be on the safer side of the law, you might want to edit your post which mentions a little about the written section.
In San Francisco. It was my first attempt.
Apr 23, 2006
What's the minimum RAW score needed to pass the MC sections of the cbest? Is it 35/50? Please clarify.
I've looked almost all day for CBEST scale conversions and haven't found any.
Bgaines, it doesn't surprise me that you haven't found any CBEST scale conversions. There isn't a conversion that will work with every form of CBEST, or for any other standardized test, for that matter. The reason is that it's extremely hard to write questions which are exactly identically difficult - as a teacher, you'll learn just how hard - so most purveyors of standardized tests build an assortment of fudge factors into the algorithm that takes raw scores as input and produces scaled scores as output. (Algorithm basically means 'way to solve a problem'. It's a good word to know for CSET.) The fudge factors are supposed to guarantee that each version of the test will be equally difficult OVERALL - which is a very different matter than having questions of exactly equal difficulty.
Unlike CSET, I don't think I have ever found a CTC document that gives an idea of what raw score translates to a passing score for CBEST. However, there is information in court documents from the 90s when certain groups sued the state because they thought CBEST was unfair to them. At that time, a scaled score of 41 was equivalent to 28 out of 40 questions for reading (10 of the 50 questions are not scored), 26 out of 40 questions for math (10 questions of the 50 questions are not scored), and 12 out of 16 points for writing. So that would be 70%, 65% and 75% assuming things are still the same. My guess is that it hasn't changed much.
The non-scored questions are there to help develop new forms of the test. Unfortunately, they also make it harder for you to figured out if you passed before you get your score report. Even if you know for a fact that you answered 75% of the MC questions correctly, you still don't cannot tell if you passed because you don't know how many of those are scored. Your real scored percentage could be as low as 55%.
This is quite interesting, Malcolm. Thanks for the explanation. So which 10 questions are not scored? Are these questions randomly chosen or are they the last 10, the first 10, the middle 10, or what? I noticed that the last 10 or so questions on both the math and reading sections were strangely easy. The harder questions came at the start of the test. Do you think it's the last 10 questions that are not scored?
No; in fact, it seems likelier that the ten unscored questions would be the hardest, or at least the ones that are difficult because they're not well written.
No way to tell which ones are not scored. I think some will be harder than average and some will be easier. Test developers typically throw out questions too many people get wrong and questions too many people get right in addition to questions with serious flaws, e.g. no answer is correct.
If a CBEST question has two genuinely valid answers or no valid answers, I think it's pretty likely to be a non-scored question - though the test taker who spends time during the test trying to decide which questions aren't being scored is wasting time. A question that everyone gets right could be a question that does get scored but will be dropped from the next version.
In the Math section there did seem to be one problem which didnt seem to have a right answer - percentile related.
Also, It did appear that the order of questions are different to people who are seated in the immediate neighborhood. I had a paper whcih was "D", and the person in front of me had a "C". Hence, the questions which are not scored could again appear anywhere depending on wether one got a "D" paper as against a "C". I dont know if the variation went all the way to "Z".
Hm. I would expect the percentile question to have been pretty thoroughly vetted, but perhaps a new one has been introduced.
Enough people take CBEST that it's in the test makers' interest to have multiple versions available.
I guess its easier to guess your score on the GRE and other tests, because the experimental questions are in their own section. I found that on those other tests, my scores tends to be pretty close to the scores I have on the practice tests. The information you gave is interesting. I know I missed a few questions, and I too found the questions at the start of the test more difficult. So I'm inclined to think they were the experimental questions, because they were not always properly worded, but who knows. Just have to wait. I'll be back online after they release the reading and math scores.
Apr 24, 2006
I think it is unlikely that one can determine which questions are not scored. The test developers do some vetting before new questions go on a test. So, IMHO it is very unlikely that that are any with no correct answer (although it is theoretically possible and I did use that as an example). And questions that seem poorly worded, ambiguous, or misleading aren't necessarily non-scored questions. The CSET math exam is full of them.
I think the important thing here is to relax. My guess is that if you felt like you did pretty well, you probably passed. If you felt that you did not do so well, you may be pleasantly surprised to find that you have passed anyway. If not, just resolve to improve next time. You get credit for each section you pass. So you don't have to worry about passing them again. This stuff ain't rocket science. Just about anyone otherwise qualified to seek a California teaching credential can pass it sooner or later.
How comforting, Malcolm. Thanks.
For those of you who took the April 22 cbest, how are you spending your time waiting for the results?
I registered for the Multi subject cset, subtest I and III for May 20. So I am studying for those in the interim. What about you?
I havent yet registered for the CSET single subject Math exam. One of the reasons being that I am not so happy with my performance in CBEST (Reading comprehension) itself. General opinion being that if one cannot pass the CBEST then one shouldnt be allowed to teach kids
But, I am brushing up on my Mathematics and shall decide if I should go ahead and register for CSET Math etc, once the CBEST results are out.
suriyan, here's a tool that might help: Reading Comprehension Success in 20 Minutes a Day. This is a book from LearningExpress that you should be able to find in or order from most big bookstores. It breaks the comprehension process down into digestible packets. Sorry I don't have the ISBN handy, but I know I've posted it a couple of times on these forums.
Malcolm, my main reason to believe the poorly worded or misleading questions on CBEST are likely to be unscored is that CBEST questions generally get taken by a LOT more people than take CSET Math, so the questions that form a core part of CBEST have gotten a lot more field testing with a much more diverse population than have the CSET Math questions. That much use is bound to knock most of the rough spots off...
suriyan, if you have what it takes to tackle CSET math I have no doubt that you have what it takes to pass CBEST. It may take more than one attempt, but it is certainly doable.
Apr 25, 2006
Thank you Malcolm for your encouraging words.
Thank you TG, I shall definitely seek help from the book that you have recommended, once I know for sure I flunked the CBEST
suriyan.r, you're welcome. Why not have a look at the book while you're preparing for CSET? (Bookstores have chairs and cafes for just this reason, after all.)
Apr 30, 2006
I shall definitely do so. Its strange that this thought didnt occur to me !
Thank you TG.
May 6, 2006
How are you all feeling about Monday? I am nervous. This weekend isn't going by fast enough! Are the results released in the morning or afternoon?
I am, too. I can't wait. I started to get nervous Wednesday. I think I passed, but now that I know that 10 of the questions on each section doesn't count, I just have no idea.
The cbest.nesinc.com website says "Unofficial test results will be available on the Internet by 5:00 p.m. on the Internet". So that will be the worst case scenario. I think they send out an email too with the test scores.
Of course, I'm curious about my results on the CBEST. But I'm more worried about the essay (because English is not my mother language), so I'll have another week of worrying...
I'll be back here on Monday to tell you how I did on Reading and Math.
Good luck to you, guys!
May 7, 2006
I will worry about Reading Comprehension and then the writing part as well. A week full of worries!
People, PLEASE find something else for your brains to do, other than stewing about CBEST! If your best friend or your little sister or your favorite student were in your position, would you let her get away with making herself crazy for several weeks over what the news might be? I suspect not. And do you want your future students giving themselves mental wedgies between the time they put the pencils down and the time the results come back? No? I thought as much. And it's not too early to start modeling the habits of mind that you hope to instill in your students. Talk to yourselves kindly, as you'd talk to a little one: "Self, we're uncomfortable, aren't we? It's uncomfortable to have to wait. We can't make the time go any faster, but what can we do while we're waiting? What else needs to be attended to?" You get the idea - validate the feeling, but then find somewhere else for your attention to be, and repeat as many times as necessary.
May 8, 2006
Well said TG. I have decided to spend my time studying for the constitution exam (May 12, 2006) and the CSET-PET (May 20, 2006).
An irrelevant comment with regards to the Constitution exam - I wonder why they want us to remember the amendment numbers with its contents ?
Instead of thinking of the requirement to know numbers and contents as a problem, think of it as an opportunity: ask yourself WHY that amendment made sense at that time in history. The time (and therefore order) of adoption reflects US history.
For example, Amendment XII - the one that has the president and vice president elected by two distinct votes, rather than the vice president being the runner-up of one vote - comes out of the elections of 1796 and 1800. In 1796, Thomas Jefferson was runnerup to John Adams in the electoral college voting and so was vice president - but their political philosophies were entirely different and the result was pretty ugly. In 1800, Thomas Jefferson and Aaron Burr tied in the electoral college, and breaking the stalemate took 35 ballots; that was ugly too, though somewhat differently. This amendment is a direct result of the rise of political parties.
Amendments XIII through XV are the post-Civil War cluster. XIII frees the slaves in 1865 and can be seen as payback to the south. XIV in 1868 guarantees equal protection under the law and would have been a somewhat tougher sell (giving freedom is one thing, granting equality is quite another). XV in 1870 specifically grants voting rights to former slaves; clearly someone hadn't quite got the message from XIV and needed their nose rubbed in it.
Amendment XVII specifies that senators are elected directly rather than by the legislatures of their states - think of this as a shift from an electoral-college system. The year is 1913, and the rise of broadcast media (radio) and new technologies for travel HAS to have been a factor.
Amendment XVIII in 1919 is Prohibition: one could say that it set up the Roaring Twenties to be roaring, because of course there's nothing like prohibiting something to make it attractive.
Amendment XXI repeals Prohibition. Think of it as the nation's 21st birthday...
Amendment XXII in 1951 limits the president to two terms. Think Franklin Delano Roosevelt's four wartime terms and how that would have frosted and frustrated the Republicans. (It did: my grandfather was still fuming in the 1970s.) Democrats found this petty - till it saved them from more than two terms of Ronald Reagan.
Amendment XXIV in 1964, making poll taxes illegal, coincides with the push for political rights via nonviolence spearheaded by Martin Luther King, and is followed in 1965 by the Voting Rights Act.
Hope this helps a little.
Scores are up guys! Go check it out!
I passed! 66 Reading. 60 Math.
Good Job bgaines! You knew you would pass already. I barely passed! 43 math. 41 reading. Hoping to pass writing. What will it take?