CSET Single Subject, Social Science

Discussion in 'Single Subject Tests' started by Ken, Aug 12, 2004.

  1. jwub25

    jwub25 Rookie

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    Jun 28, 2009

    All for it

    I live in Martinez and could use a study Buddy!
     
  2. Keesa

    Keesa New Member

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    Jul 18, 2009

    Subtest III- Civics, Economics, Cal Hist.

    Hi, I just took subtest III today. I thought I'd share what I studied with.

    For Economics, I read through half of "Why Popcorn Costs So Much at the Movies" by Richard McKenzie. It was very enjoyable to read and I used some of the content for an example in the essay. It was good for developing an economic mindset. I am keeping it so I can use it when I teach. The author also has free videos online, but I'm not yet allowed to share links on this site :( so here is the link but with spaces in between everything. h t t p : / / m e d i a . m e r a g e . u c i . e d u / M c K e n z i e / M o d u l e s . h t m l I recommend them!

    I also read through part of the economics section of the book, "An Incomplete Education: 3,684 Things you should have learned but probably didn't," one of those "Academics for dummies" kind of books. Not bad, so I'd check it out of a library, but probably not helpful enough to go out and buy. I got it as a gift.

    Also, a while ago I took Economic History of the U.S. and the textbook site has some links that could be helpful: h t t p : / / w p s . a w . c o m / a w _ h u g h e s c a i n _ a m e c o n h i s t _ 6 / 4 / 1 1 2 1 / 2 8 7 1 5 7 . c w / i n d e x . h t m l

    In general, for economics, don't just look up the definitions of terms (supply, demand, opportunity cost, equilibrium, etc.) but know examples of how they all work.

    I just took a class on California History, so I didn't do extra study except going through my notes. My class didn't use a traditional textbook, we mostly went through primary sources. Here's a website full of primary sources! h t t p : / / w w w . c a l i s p h e r e . u n i v e r s i t y o f c a l i f o r n i a . e d u / (I looove California History!)

    I also took a Constitutional Law class recently, so I didn't really study for the government section. I probably should have studied more, especially comparative governments, which I never studied formally.

    I also have the Cliff Notes for the CSET and read through that and did the practice test. I love doing the practice test because it gets me in the zone!

    I hope some of those resources are helpful to you all! I'll let you know if I passed! Good luck in your studying!
    :thumb:
     
  3. TeacherGroupie

    TeacherGroupie Moderator

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    Jul 18, 2009

    Keesa, a smart cookie like you can probably find dozens of things to say here on A to Z, and you're closer to your Allowed-To-Post-Links privilege than you might think.

    When you've achieved that level, could I trouble you to post these links in the Useful Web Sites thread for social science?

    For the rest of you: the links are, respectively,

    http://media.merage.uci.edu/McKenzie/Modules.html
    http://wps.aw.com/aw_hughescain_ameconhist_6/4/1121/287157.cw/index.html
    http://www.calisphere.universityofcalifornia.edu/

    And thanks, Keesa: these are cool!
     
  4. RealRorschach

    RealRorschach Rookie

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    Jul 19, 2009

    Well, Im done with my CSET. Took the entire time, I took Subsets I,II, and III and I have no idea on how I did because Im not sure of the scoring mechanism.
    As I took the test I counted the number I could have possibly missed (ones I usually could narrow down to 2 answers but couldnt know for sure that I was right) and I had 11,13, and 14 that I couldnt positively identify for each test. Id assume I got a few of them right, well at least one because I checked the answer when I got home.
    Somewhat of an odd test. There was nothing about the civil war in the US History portion, or any other war or doctrine for that matter. I thought Id do great on US History and had the most trouble with that section.
    I assume that I passed World History, and I definetly passed the Government/Econ section even though I did poorly on the California area presumptively.
    My essays were pretty good and nothing really threw me for a loop. I filled them with tons and tons of facts, and some might have been slightly wrong but I probably did well on them.
    I put in about 14 days of studying about 4-5 hours a day in the CSET Cliffs Notes (I got 80-85% on all practice tests in that book), US History for Dummies, and World History for Dummies, and Barons AP Economics (very helpful).
    My question is how is this thing scored? I know its 220 points out of 300 where 100 is the bottom. Does that mean a score of 60% would get you 220? Do most people pass this test, and this was my first go-around.
    Any advice would be great! Im gonna go cool my brain off.
     
  5. TeacherGroupie

    TeacherGroupie Moderator

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    Jul 19, 2009

    More people pass on the first try than don't, RealRorschach: see http://www.ctc.ca.gov/commission/agendas/2009-08/2009-08-2E.pdf.

    Multiple choice on a given subtest in social science should count for 70% of available points and constructed response for 30%. Whether 60% correct would get you that 220, though, depends to some extent on the version of the subtest, since more difficult questions are weighted slightly more heavily.
     
  6. 4capulina

    4capulina Rookie

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    Jul 20, 2009

    RealRorschach:

    If you studied for 14 or 15 days (5 hours a day) you should probably be okay. That is a lot of studying. And you used excellent study materials. I passed theses tests last year. It sounds like you did everything pretty well. Good Luck!
     
  7. RealRorschach

    RealRorschach Rookie

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    Jul 23, 2009

    I sure hope so 4capulina, that would be awesome to get into the program this fall. I assume I passed them, even though some of the questions were exceptionally difficult and odd. Some where broad and had multiple right answers and some were essential detailed in areas that I never really studied nor even cared about, like far-Ancient History of China.
     
  8. RealRorschach

    RealRorschach Rookie

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    Aug 16, 2009

    Well results come out this week. My guess is that I passed at least 2 of them, at least I hope...so I can get into the program this year. Ill be sure to report what I got as soon as I get the results.
    Lets see what the Lord holds in store for me this week.
     
  9. TeacherGroupie

    TeacherGroupie Moderator

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    Aug 17, 2009

    Let us know, RealRorschach, okay?
     
  10. RealRorschach

    RealRorschach Rookie

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    Aug 17, 2009

    I promise I will Teachergroupie!
     
  11. RealRorschach

    RealRorschach Rookie

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    Aug 18, 2009

    Passed All 3 CSET Science Sections. Unoffical scores in my email box. The Lord is merciful, and greatful (mainly for staying in the Western Hemisphere).
     
  12. TeacherGroupie

    TeacherGroupie Moderator

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    Aug 18, 2009

    Congratulations, RealRorschach!

    Please take a little time to celebrate your accomplishment - nobody ever passed these things purely by luck - and to think about what you've learned from the experience that can help you help your future students.

    If you want to post about it here, feel free.
     
  13. RealRorschach

    RealRorschach Rookie

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    Aug 19, 2009

    Actually, to pass I just spent alot of time studying. I have a Masters Degree so it was fairly easy.
    I just spent about 4 or 5 hours every day reading through the US History and World History for Dummies Book, AP Economics Textbook (very helpful), and I didnt study for government because it was easy.
    I read about 100 pages in each of those books a day and hilighted the information that I felt I did not know, a ton of it I knew, so I just focused on stuff I didnt and did a cursory look over the others. I also used the CSET Prep Book from Cliffs Study Guide, which was brief but helpful.
    Overall, prepare to be surprised and be sure you have a very broad understanding, and often a very specified one. Im really good at history, govt, and minored in econ and I felt worried about the test afterwords. Its totally natural, and I hope you guys did well.
    Thanks for the help Teachergroupie.
     
  14. JaY P.

    JaY P. New Member

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    Jan 7, 2010

    Hello all,

    My name is JaY and I recently graduated in May 2009 with a degree in history. I am planning on taking the CSET in May 2010 and I have already started collecting books to aid me in creating my own study guide based on the test content. At this moment I plan on using the following books:

    Roger A. Arnold - Economics
    Scmidt, Shelly, & Bardes - American Government and Politics Today
    The Times History of the World

    The first two books are college intro books, so I'm sure they will be more than adequate. The Times was recommended on this forum. Unfortunately, I have sold my US history books and have not taken a California history class. Can anyone recommend some good resources for both.

    Also, how in depth should I go with my study guides? As a history major, I can get quite in depth with the subject, but I want to avoid over studying if possible. Any other suggestions would be welcomed.

    Good luck to everyone who plan on taking the the CSET in the near future.

    JaY P.
     
  15. PaperbackWriter

    PaperbackWriter Rookie

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    Jan 7, 2010

    read this thread and you will pass
     
  16. TeacherGroupie

    TeacherGroupie Moderator

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    (chuckling)

    Well, it takes a little more than that... but, yes, there's lots of useful stuff here.
     
  17. blueandgold

    blueandgold Rookie

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    Jan 10, 2010

    I took CSET social studies subset I yesterday, World History. I found this forum about 2 months ago. I have been studying. I bought test books, an atlas, Times world history book, world history for dummies and I felt pretty good before the test. After the test I felt terrible. It felt like everything I studied was not on the test. I tried to remember the questions I had trouble with and started studying the info. this morning. Does anyone know if the next world history subset I test will have similar questions? Do they usually do that or will it be totally different? I am feeling so bummed. I was planning on taking the US History and Gov. tests next, but I don't think I passed the world history. Any advice?
     
  18. TeacherGroupie

    TeacherGroupie Moderator

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    Each subtest exists in multiple versions, blueandgold - so, while it's possible that you could see some of the same questions, the chances of you seeing ALL the same questions are rather low.
     
  19. blueandgold

    blueandgold Rookie

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    Ok, good to know. I figured it would be a different verson, and the questions would be re-worded, but it had to be some what similar because it is a standardized test. I don't think I passed the world history, but I need to start studying for the other tests. I felt like my weakest area was world history, and that is why I took that test first. Do you know if the essay questions are similar in each version or are they totally different?
     
  20. blueandgold

    blueandgold Rookie

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    Jan 10, 2010

    TeacherGroupie- Thanks for all your advice. I checked out your site you have linked under your name. I can't PM you because I am new to this site, but you always give everyone so much great advice. Do you know of any classes or tutoring that can help me pass the CSET in SS. I live in Rancho Cucamonga, California.
     
  21. TeacherGroupie

    TeacherGroupie Moderator

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    blueandgold, the emphases are quite likely to differ from one form of a subtest to another, and I would certainly expect the constructed-response questions to differ as well.

    (Constructed-response questions are not essays - at least, certainly not in the CBEST sense.)

    Many test takers leave the test site firmly believing that the test has eaten their lunch, so to speak - and then find they pass. It makes sense to stay fresh on the concepts of world history, since they may surface in the other subtests, but please don't absolutely assume you didn't pass till scores are released, okay? In your case, that's February 8.
     
  22. Eastwest

    Eastwest Rookie

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    Jan 11, 2010

    First of all, I would like to thank all that contribute to this forum. Teachergroupie, a special :wow::thanks: goes out to you! I've been using and monitoring this forum for over a year to help me in my endeavors to be admitted to a single subject(social science) credentialing program.
    Second, I have passed both subtests 115(USHistory) and 116(Econ., Civics, CAHistory). My approach to these was to take community college classes, and then study using the cliff's prep book and cset online resources. I finished my undergraduate in 2002, so a transition back to academia was welcomed. I understand that all candidates don't have time for personal enrichment via college classes but if you do, I highly recommend this approach, as I passed both on first try.
    Third, I just attempted subtest 114(WorldHistory) for the second time. Other than Anthropology and Geography classes, I have never taken 'world history' specific college classes. I used the Times Complete History of the World, DVD's from the local library(mostly for supplemental info on ancient civilizations), cliff's prep, and a substest 114 specific study guide that I ordered directly from the Orange County Dept. of Ed.(I couldn't find it from any d.o.e in the Bay Area). These have all been extremely helpful resources but the test covers an immense amount of material(Paleolithic to present).
    Finally, I missed the first test by 8 points the first time(212 out of a needed 220) and I'm not feeling very confident with the latest results, as I know I made huge errors on the extended constructed response, which seems to be my theme.
    Any suggestions for new material, approaches or guidance would be greatly appreciated.
    Much luck to all
     
  23. TeacherGroupie

    TeacherGroupie Moderator

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    Welcome to A to Z, Eastwest. I infer that you're in the Bay Area; nice country, there.

    Eight points is a very bridgeable gap. Sometimes the issue (or part of the issue) is less what the test taker knows than how the test taker is packaging that knowledge. That's why I'm a bit of a demon about the information on side 2 of people's score reports. Did your score report shed any light on what you might have needed to do differently?

    Oh, and you're welcome, and I'm blushing.
     
  24. blueandgold

    blueandgold Rookie

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    I concure with Eastwest. TeacherGroupie has great information and insite. Thank you. I look forward to the advice from TeacherGroupie and others to help me pass the CSET. TeacherGroupie you are awesome!
     
  25. TeacherGroupie

    TeacherGroupie Moderator

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    Now I'm blushing harder.
     
  26. Eastwest

    Eastwest Rookie

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    My apologies, as much as I've read on the forum, I should've known that was going to be one of your questions teachergroupie ;).
    The first subtest diagnostic information did indicate that I was very strong within the World Geography domain yet fairly weak otherwise. Overall, +++ multiple choice and only ++ constructed with k,s(1) and p,k,s(2) as indices. It's fairly straightforward that I need to improve my knowledge probably leading to being able to support. 'Knowledge' is a pretty broad term on a test like this, so I'm not sure that's much help. As far as purpose, well, it's kind of hard to have a purpose if you don't have the knowledge or support, right?
    Thus, when I prepared for the most recent, this past w/e, I did not spend much time on Geography and tried to practice more constructed responses. My initial feeling is that this test is going to score much like the first but as you have pleaded teachergroupie, I'm not entirely convinced yet. "So you're telling me there's a chance!"
    Obviously I am continuing a stringent knowledge gathering schedule, reading and re-reading but perhaps I need a fresh lead on some comprehensive constructed response questions.
     
  27. TeacherGroupie

    TeacherGroupie Moderator

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    Purpose doesn't have to do with YOUR purpose: it has to do with grasping what it is that the question is driving at. Knowledge in the case of questions in social science generally means a combination of information about the issue or event in question and a grasp of the technical terminology of the field. Support is further illustration, or - if you've been asked for an opinion or conclusion - a decent accounting of the thought process you followed.
     
  28. Eastwest

    Eastwest Rookie

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    Thank you for the clarification Teachergroupie, I hope I didn't come across as contemptuous in my last response, that was not my intent. Your response actually makes me feel as though I may have done better than I thought on the latest set of constructed responses, especially in the case of 'purpose' and 'support'. Do you gather any other interpretations from my results? Again, thank you, just airing things out seems to help the evolution of my acknowledgements.
     
  29. TeacherGroupie

    TeacherGroupie Moderator

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    You didn't at all, Eastwest, and in fact I need to thank you for asking about purpose: it's clarified for me an issue that I had had trouble teasing loose from a number of other issues in test taking.
     
  30. Eastwest

    Eastwest Rookie

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    Jan 14, 2010

    Not sure how that happened, but you are welcome. If you come up with any suggestions, strategies, or resources for me please let me know. Do you know if, or how often, the CSET website changes their samples questions? I'd really love to see a new set before the March test date, IF I have to take it again.
     
  31. TeacherGroupie

    TeacherGroupie Moderator

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    What got clarified for me is a possible reason for the propensity of test takers to answer as though their purpose WERE material to the process.

    Sample questions on the Web site don't change at all, though the packaging of the answers changed a bit in a couple of cases a year or so ago.

    Try Googling for questions for the various AP social science exams.
     
  32. ScoopDL

    ScoopDL Rookie

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    Jan 19, 2010

    Jobs!?

    Passed the CSET SS a year and a half ago. Have yet to find a job. My problem is that I must find a job as an intern, as I cannot student teach w/o quitting my current job (benefits, bonuses, senority, etc.). Not able to do that - the bills still have ot be paid! What's a guy (or gal) to do?
     
  33. TeacherGroupie

    TeacherGroupie Moderator

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    For one thing, try posting in a forum that isn't specifically about the test. I'd recommend Job Seekers. You can get there via the Forum Jump tool in the lower left of this Web page.
     
  34. black dog

    black dog Rookie

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    Anyone here ever take all 3 Social Science subtests at one time and pass them all? I'm not necessarily expecting to pass them all but I'm thinking of signing up for all of them, hoping to pass 1 and 2, and maybe 3 if I have the time.
     
  35. TeacherGroupie

    TeacherGroupie Moderator

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    It's not unheard of, black dog.
     
  36. black dog

    black dog Rookie

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    Thanks, I guess I'll give it a try!
     
  37. RealRorschach

    RealRorschach Rookie

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    Black dog I took all 3 social science tests the first time and passed them all with flying colors. The tests are pretty easy if you know your history; Im not a history major but I definetly know my stuff. Take em all but there are 9 essays so make sure you have plenty of sharp pencils and your fingers will definetly be sore.
    Its very easy, you can do it!
     
  38. TeacherGroupie

    TeacherGroupie Moderator

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    (stubbornly)

    They're not "essays", certainly not in the CBEST sense. Call them free responses, written responses, constructed responses, short answers, even extended answers... but NOT essays.

    And if the proctor allows, use a mechanical pencil for the... written stuff.
     
  39. black dog

    black dog Rookie

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    Rorschach, thanks for the tips! I feel pretty good about my history knowledge, I just have to brush up on my econ.

    And I'm not looking forward to writing the essays, or short answers, constructed responses, whatever they are. I think most of us just aren't used to writing so much anymore since we just usually type.

    TG, what is the difference between an essay and the others? Is it mainly that it doesn't get judged as having an opening paragraph, main body, topic sentences, grammar, syntax, things like that?
     
  40. TeacherGroupie

    TeacherGroupie Moderator

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    Feb 8, 2010

    Things like that and more so, black dog.

    Subtests I and II of CSET Social Science each serve up one extended response and two short responses. Subtest III gives three short responses (one per domain).

    A short response is truly just that: one or two chunks-the-size-of-paragraphs, though they aren't necessarily paragraphs in the usual sense - in fact, there's no premium on indenting or composing a complex compound sentence. Allow ten to fifteen minutes for each short response. An extended response is allotted about twice the space and roughly twice the time and doesn't have to be much prettier as text - bullet lists won't be a problem provided you actually answer the question.

    Take a look at the sample test items doc online to see how much space - or how little - you're given to write in.
     

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