cset english subtest IV?????

Discussion in 'Single Subject Tests' started by kalsjh, Jan 9, 2006.

  1. TeacherGroupie

    TeacherGroupie Moderator

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    Jun 18, 2009

    Um. In fact the statistics compiled by the California Department of Education indicate a cumulative passing rate (passing over time) through 2007 of about 75% - which strikes me as being about right.

    In your case, Bart, I'd recommend boning up on terminology - grammar, literary figures, all that, then finding works by authors you love to hate and using them as stalking horses, or looking up creative writing lesson plans and playing with any samples of student writing that turn up. Think of the creative writing exercise as asking you to sketch out a plan for another professional in the field.

    Have you been writing essays for Subtest IV or short answers? There's a difference.
     
  2. Malcolm

    Malcolm Enthusiast

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    Jun 18, 2009

    Bart,

    I feel for you. Sometimes very qualified people have trouble passing some part or another of CSET. I have a friend who is an excellent math teacher who struggled for a very long time to pass CSET. Hopefully, you won't struggle as long as he did.

    Your major seems to have served you well on the first three sections. The one you had trouble with would seem to be the obvious one for someone who was not an English major.

    It would be wonderful to have feedback on what you got right and wrong on these tests so you could do better next time. Unfortunately, it isn't practical for standardized exams and isn't going to happen.

    There are controls built into the process. Each written response is scored independently by two trained scorers according to specific procedures. If their scores do not agree, the response is graded by a third scorer. And if you are not satisfied with the result, you can request you test be rescored. If you have scored similar written responses for another standardized test, you should be familiar with something like this.

    The fact that you did better the first time when you took all four parts in one sitting than you did the second time when you just took one part is interesting. It could be lack of subject matter knowledge. It could be the luck of the draw on the question you got. It could be you over-analyzed the question and strayed from responding adequately to what was asked. Or maybe all of the above...

    Note that CSET is supposedly designed so that a well qualified examinee can complete all the parts in a single sitting. Subtest IV is comprised of four short response questions. NES expects nothing more than a knowledgeable person can produce in 15 minutes.

    I don't know how you prepared for CSET or what you did to prepare for the retake of Subtest IV. But at this point IIWY I would re-evaluate my subject matter knowledge in relation to the Subtest Description and the referenced California Content Standards and review as necessary (the obvious emphasis would be on creative writing), make sure I understood the grading rubric used for the subtest, and make sure I responded in the future according to the rubric.

    FWIW IMHO if you are in the Sacramento area, you likely haven't missed anything on the hiring front. Many pink slips have gone out. There is precious little hiring going on now. Districts are being very cautious about hiring until they know what their budgets will be. The big ones have declining enrollment for a variety of reasons. The state is reducing funding. Nobody will know by how much until the Governator signs the budget bill. The legislature has rarely delivered the budget to the governor by the constitutional deadline in the last thirty years or so. Look for any significant hiring to start in August at the earliest and go on into the fall.
     
  3. Bart

    Bart Rookie

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    Jun 18, 2009

    Thanks for the replies. Yes, I am very familiar with the grading procedures. I have literally graded thousands of standardized tests for CTB McGraw. I think there was a mistake or that there is an incentive to make more money on their part. Perhaps I'm wrong, either way I just want to pass it next time around. I have a pretty nice book called CSET English published by Research & Education Association REA so I guess I'll review that again and also take your advice TeacherGroupie & Malcolm. I wonder what the statistics would be for 2009? A lot can change in two years, especially during a recession. I would also be curious to know who oversees the publishing of their statistics or if they just trust what CSET publishes without question. As you can see I don't blindly trust institutions to do the right thing, especially amid an epic budget crises...

    "I'll be back." :D :thumb:
     
  4. TeacherGroupie

    TeacherGroupie Moderator

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    Jun 18, 2009

    Bart, the numbers across subjects are pretty well where I'd expect them to be. Malcolm's right that highly knowledgeable people sometimes come to grief on these things - and it doesn't surprise me in the slightest, given that you mention being a published author, that the domain that tripped you up is assessing students' creative writing: you've probably been writing by instinct, and this is a different animal.
     
  5. Malcolm

    Malcolm Enthusiast

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    Jun 18, 2009

    Your CSET results are reported to the CTC every time you take it. There is no need for them to rely on anyone else for statistics. And they have plenty of analysts and consultants to crunch the numbers and generate the reports.

    It would be foolish for NES to try to manipulate scores to make more money from retakes. A large amount of what they make comes from designing and validating the tests. And only roughly have what you pay goes to them. The rest goes to the state. Contracts are awarded every few years. Why would they take the chance of getting caught and losing future business?
     
  6. Bart

    Bart Rookie

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    Jun 18, 2009

    Thanks for the encouragement and advice guys and gals. I'm going to write the perfect paper next time, I promise! :thumb:

    I must see PASS on the next email! Do you have the number for that truck driving school? Truck Master truck driving, I believe it is, I might need that... ;)
     
  7. Malcolm

    Malcolm Enthusiast

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    Jun 18, 2009

    A word of warning...

    Be careful before you rely on a commercial study guide for CSET English. Just make sure it dovetails well with the Subtest Description and referenced California Content standards. Many folks have been disappointed with commercial products. They tend to be too general and full of boiler plate. Don't know if the product you have has these problems.
     
  8. Bart

    Bart Rookie

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    Jun 18, 2009

    I actually really like the REA guide I have. I did a lot of research before I bought it and it definitely helped me in passing all three, (And almost the fourth) sections of the CSET English exam at the first try. The materials on the CSET website are certainly helpful as well.
     
  9. loyolachigrad84

    loyolachigrad84 New Member

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    Jun 18, 2009

    bart, there are over 500 people named bart on facebook...haha...how about giving me the first letter of your last name or the school you graduated from if you joined its network....listen, it's cool if you don't want to, since we obviously don't know each other and it's the internet and all...
    if you're not comfortable, how about telling me in a reply to this message what you used to pass Subtest 2....
     
  10. Bart

    Bart Rookie

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    Jun 18, 2009

    I'll PM you...
     
  11. TeacherGroupie

    TeacherGroupie Moderator

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    Jun 18, 2009

    loyolachigrad84, if you've gotten your official score report, what do you see on side 2?
     
  12. Bart

    Bart Rookie

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    Jun 21, 2009

    So does anyone recommend any required reading that will specifically gear someone up for section IV? I'm primarily looking for opinions from people that have absolutely no affiliation or, are being compensated by the product/company that they are recommending.

    Also, I would be curious TeacherGroupie if you could provide a link verifying the statistics that you posted on specific percentages of passing grades with the CSET English, thanks!
     
  13. TeacherGroupie

    TeacherGroupie Moderator

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    Jun 21, 2009

    REQUIRED reading? No; the resource that resonates for one test taker may be a clunker for another. You could see if your local library carries Usborne's nifty Introduction to Acting and Theatre - it's designed for kids so is highly visual, but doesn't talk down to them. (No, I am not affiliated in any way with Usborne. I just know that many of Usborne's books work really well.)

    The link is http://www.ctc.ca.gov/commission/agendas/2008-08/2008-08-3G.pdf.
     
  14. Malcolm

    Malcolm Enthusiast

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    Jun 21, 2009

    Bart,

    You might want to get the pre materials for Subtest IV from the Orange County Department of Education. I haven't seen them, but I have seen some for other tests and they are generally on-target even if they do tend to have a lot of boiler plate.
     
  15. Bart

    Bart Rookie

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    Jun 21, 2009

    Thanks for the reading suggestion, I'll check that book out. :thumb:

    I just browsed your pdf link. They mention only three sections on those statistics.
     
  16. Bart

    Bart Rookie

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    Jun 22, 2009

    It's kind of strange my last post wouldn't show...
     
  17. TeacherGroupie

    TeacherGroupie Moderator

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    Jun 22, 2009

    Not so strange: you quoted my post with the link, right? So the system software puts a hold on posts by new members that contain links - this is to discourage commercial posts, among other things. With a few more posts under your belt, you should find that that stops happening.
     
  18. Bart

    Bart Rookie

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    Jun 22, 2009

    Interesting, I'm a long time member of a well known engineering forum and yet I'm not familiar with this practice. Thanks for explaining what happened though.

    Any other advice about section IV of the CSET English I'm all ears. I'm scheduled to take it yet again...

    ---------------------------------------------------------

    California Subject Examinations for Teachers (CSET)
    ADMISSION TICKET

    TEST DATE: Jul 18, 2009

    SESSION: PM

    REPORTING TIME: 1:30PM

    ATA NUMBER: XXX
    SEAT NUMBER: XXXXX
    TEST(S):
    108 ENGLISH SUBTEST IV
     
  19. TeacherGroupie

    TeacherGroupie Moderator

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    Jun 22, 2009

    I don't think the link-blocking is a feature of all forums, but the site owner's pretty protective of everyone here.
     
  20. Bart

    Bart Rookie

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    Jun 25, 2009

    Anyone? Bueller, Bueller...

    [​IMG]
     
  21. Bart

    Bart Rookie

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    Jun 29, 2009

    Ok, I'm going out now to Czech out Carries Usborne's nifty Introduction to Acting and Theatre. It better help me to have a perfect score on section IV this time or else!!!
     
  22. tinman

    tinman Rookie

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    Jun 30, 2009

    Hey Bart,

    I'm also going to be taking subtest IV (along with I and III) on July 18. Being an English major, I'm not really worried about I and III; subtest IV is what I'm concerned about, as many people seem to be. I took an introductory public speaking course a few years ago, but that was it. I feel frustrated about having to take a test on something that wasn't part of my major.

    The general consensus on these boards is to use "buzz" words in your responses and keep the answers brief. I would imagine that too lengthy of an answer--or using too many different examples--might suggest to the graders that you have an uncertainty toward the question being asked. I tend to write lengthy answers, so I'm going to be extra careful to be succinct yet detailed.

    The Usborne book sounds really helpful, and I too am going to consult that. Would you be willing to share how you did on the Journalism/Media section of the test? Of all the questions on subtest IV, I am least knowledgeable in this area. As a previous poster wrote, the study guides available for the CSET English are good for practice tests but are quite thin with terms and general concepts.

    I know the amount of resources and preparation material out there is overwhelming. I've spent a considerable amount of time preparing and reviewing stuff, and I feel really tired but proud of myself for the hard work. I wish I could help out more, but I haven't taken the test(s) yet. I would like to keep in contact, though, and offer further suggestions.
     
  23. TeacherGroupie

    TeacherGroupie Moderator

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    tinman, what's important is not the length of the answer but whether it answers the question in a fashion that indicates that the writer got the point of the question, knew the technical terms to use and used them appropriately, and provided evidence to back up the answer - including examples.

    At the same time, it's important to note that the scorers for Subtest IV more or less have to assume that every constructed response they see was written by someone who took all four subtests and therefore had the minimum possible time for each constructed response.

    Right here is a pretty good place to keep in touch and share ideas.
     
  24. Bart

    Bart Rookie

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    Jul 1, 2009

    It's always easy for people not taking the test to give their 2 cents. It's another thing to be a published author having lesser accomplished people judge and grade you. Half of what I wrote on my last test probably went over the graders head.
     
  25. tinman

    tinman Rookie

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    Bart,

    As a scholar, future teacher, and fellow test taker, my comment was meant to give encouraging support, not preach in an arrogant, condescending tone. There have been plenty of non-published authors--let alone non English majors--who have passed subtest IV with flying colors, usually because they either adhered to the basic guidelines on the CSET's website or followed people's advice on these forums.

    @ TeacherGroupie: I agree with you completely. I think what I was trying to simply say was that conciseness & specific examples are often favored over padded nothingness, at least in my experiences as a student.
     
  26. TeacherGroupie

    TeacherGroupie Moderator

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    Conciseness over padded nothingness, yes indeed, tinman.
     
  27. Bart

    Bart Rookie

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    That wasn't directed at you tinman. How is Dorothy these days anyways?
     
  28. TeacherGroupie

    TeacherGroupie Moderator

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    I dare say tinman didn't think it was, Bart.
     
  29. confusedone

    confusedone New Member

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    Jul 14, 2009

    I'm taking my test this saturday too! i have no idea what to look at for subtest IV...i did not study for I to III too much...but now i've failed subtest IV...and have no clue what to study from........????



    Hey Bart,

    I'm also going to be taking subtest IV (along with I and III) on July 18. Being an English major, I'm not really worried about I and III; subtest IV is what I'm concerned about, as many people seem to be. I took an introductory public speaking course a few years ago, but that was it. I feel frustrated about having to take a test on something that wasn't part of my major.

    The general consensus on these boards is to use "buzz" words in your responses and keep the answers brief. I would imagine that too lengthy of an answer--or using too many different examples--might suggest to the graders that you have an uncertainty toward the question being asked. I tend to write lengthy answers, so I'm going to be extra careful to be succinct yet detailed.

    The Usborne book sounds really helpful, and I too am going to consult that. Would you be willing to share how you did on the Journalism/Media section of the test? Of all the questions on subtest IV, I am least knowledgeable in this area. As a previous poster wrote, the study guides available for the CSET English are good for practice tests but are quite thin with terms and general concepts.

    I know the amount of resources and preparation material out there is overwhelming. I've spent a considerable amount of time preparing and reviewing stuff, and I feel really tired but proud of myself for the hard work. I wish I could help out more, but I haven't taken the test(s) yet. I would like to keep in contact, though, and offer further suggestions.[/QUOTE]
     
  30. TeacherGroupie

    TeacherGroupie Moderator

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    What do you see on side 2 of your score reports, confusedone?
     
  31. Bart

    Bart Rookie

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    Hi confusedone, I had no marks indicating anything except on the last, creative writing section. Someone that I know who passed all four sections on her first try, (who was taking a prep course for the CSET English) gave me her study materials for section IV tonight so I'll try to post some stuff from it that I think will help others tomorrow.

    Cheers
     
  32. Bart

    Bart Rookie

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    Jul 15, 2009

    Constructed Response Section IV Sample Question and 3 (Best) Point Response

    ----------------------------------------------------------

    Question: Why is maintaining eye contact with your audience such an important component of an effective oral presentation?

    . identify two positive elements of maintaining direct eye contact with an audience and

    . describe a negative outcome of not maintaining direct eye contact during a speech or oral presentation.

    ----------------------------------------------------------

    Before looking below for the 3 point example write your own response to the question and then contrast and compare it with the 3 point example below.

    ----------------------------------------------------------

    3 Point Response

    Eye contact with an audience is a critical component of effective speaking because it lets the audience know the speaker is interested in them as individuals rather than as a collective group. If the speaker shows a genuine interest in the audience, it is more likely that the audience will respond in kind, by showing a more genuine interest in the materials being presented. Conversely, a speaker who avoids eye contact with the audience appears lethargic and perhaps worse, apathetic, leaving the audience to respond with the same perceived boredom and indifference.

    Direct eye contact with an audience also conveys the speaker's knowledge of and confidence in the materials that they are presenting. A speaker's lack of familiarity with or comprehension of the material(s) they are presenting will reflect in their eyes, as a less confident speaker will be more likely to avoid eye contact with the audience by nervously shifting their gaze from one random vantage point to another. On the other hand, a confident speaker who is well versed in the material(s) being presented will make direct eye contact with as many audience members as possible.
     
  33. Bart

    Bart Rookie

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    Jul 16, 2009

    A tip that I received just today that I think will help a lot of people taking this last section of the CSET is...

    Use words pertinent to the area you are writing about. They will give you points for certain specific words that relate to topic at hand. For instance in reference to a theater question you could use words and titles such as Set Designer, Stage Carpenter, Costume Designer, Production Staff, Artistic Director, Prodcer, Production Manager, Technical Manager, Front of House, Designer, Technicians etc. You can read up about theater here.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Theatre
     
  34. TeacherGroupie

    TeacherGroupie Moderator

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    Yup: my way of putting that is that one needs to use the technical terms related to the field. Which means one needs to identify them, whence the suggestion that people consult a combination of the test's subject matter requirements, the state content standards and frameworks documents, and an assortment of good glossaries that can be rummaged up on line.
     
  35. Bart

    Bart Rookie

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    Jul 17, 2009

    Oral Communication Terms (Brace yourself, this is transcribed from notes and messy)

    1. Debate - prep intensive - formal settings, competitive time limits Materials? no props typically. Two sides - Affirmative and Negative, with an impartial chairperson discuss with a series of rebuttals and refutations.

    2. Impromptu - No preparation, like an interview - can be, but not necessarily persuasive. Audience will be either questioning or knowledgeable on the subject. No rules, no time limits, no materials. Strengths - audience interactions Weaknesses - greatest possibility of failure.

    3. Extemporaneous - formal setting, competitive Time limits - for preparation as well as presentation Materials - none typically

    4. Persuasive - convince someone of something - formal and informal uses Preparation is varied, not necessarily limited Appeals to pathos, logos, ethos Try to change people's attitudes, actions, or contentions/beliefs Materials - vary, can be props, notecards, depends on situation.

    5. Expository - inform - narrative, anecdotes, testimonials, statistics, definitions Time to prepare, should attempt to know audience to prepare Cons - requires familiarity w/ audience and topic.
     
  36. confusedone

    confusedone New Member

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    Jul 17, 2009

    hey bart, thanks for the response...did you get a chance to download the notes for cset iv? surprisingly someone else also gave me their notes last night from a class they took with alameda county of education...is it the same one? i read those today...
     
  37. confusedone

    confusedone New Member

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    hey teacher groupie, i took out my test results the other day to look at side two after reading the posts on here from everyone...and now have no clue where i put it! i cant find it! mmm....and i cant even remember what it said...sorry!
     
  38. confusedone

    confusedone New Member

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    i remember there was a question on the cset iv that asked to recall a scene from a movie and describe the aesthetic effects or something along those lines.... how would i answer that question?
     
  39. Bart

    Bart Rookie

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    Jul 17, 2009

    Use words like ambiance, lighting, depth of field, set design, dialogue, pacing, sound, mood, chemistry between actors etc. That's just off the top of my head so just throwing out ideas.
     
  40. plfayer

    plfayer New Member

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    Hey, Bart!

    I'm curious re: how you did on Subtest IV. Have you passed? I'm taking mine again on 9/12. Ugh.
     

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