HELP PLEASE! CSET English Subtest III

Discussion in 'Single Subject Tests' started by tmrivas, Feb 21, 2006.

  1. tmrivas

    tmrivas New Member

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    Feb 21, 2006

    Hi all! I'm so desperate right now. I just got my scores today and found out that I did not pass CSET English Subtest III... AGAIN! The first time I took the CSET I took all four and passed the other subtests. I have taken Subtest III four times already! I, seriously, am feeling like a major dumbass. :eek:

    My best friend, who is a HS English teacher, helped me study for this past test and still, I didn't pass. Is there a course I can take for just this subtest? Can someone help me with what angles they took on their essays? I have tried doing point-by-point, passage-to-passage, a little combo of both.

    Also, the unofficial scores say that the official score report will give you the diagnostics, etc. I have yet to get a score report that gives me any feedback. Do you know if you can call, or email, and have someone tell you WHY your essay was not passing?

    Thanks, in advance, for any help you can give me.

    ~Tina-Marie
     
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  3. smilingteacher

    smilingteacher Rookie

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    Feb 21, 2006

    I've been using Frances Sussna as a tutor. She is an Excellent tutor. You can call or work with her individually. Her number is 650-595-8982. Best of luck! Never give up!

    John Morris
     
  4. Malcolm

    Malcolm Enthusiast

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    The only guidance you will get out of NES is the diagnostics printed on the back of your score report. All you can do for an essay is to check the scoring rubric to see what your numerical score means and go from there.
     
  5. TeacherGroupie

    TeacherGroupie Moderator

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    The diagnostics to which Malcolm refers are the performance indicators on side 2 of the official score report, which you'll get in about a week. For CSET English Subtest III, you won't have multiple choice scores but you will have one set of scores for each of your essays. The rubrics involve Purpose, Knowledge, Support, and Depth; if you get a checkmark, you satisfied the minimum requirements for all four (though that doesn't necessarily mean a high score); if you fell short in any, you'll see some combination of p, k, s, or d.

    I don't know of courses that focus only on Subtest III, but certainly tutoring might be an option. In what part of the state are you located?
     
  6. tmrivas

    tmrivas New Member

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    Feb 22, 2006

    I'm in Southern California. I'm about 10 miles east of Downtown LA.
     
  7. TeacherGroupie

    TeacherGroupie Moderator

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    I believe someone's mentioned classes through the LA Unified School District; such classes are sometimes available to people who aren't actually in the district. PM me when you get your official score report and we can discuss it.
     
  8. crdellosso

    crdellosso New Member

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    Feb 23, 2006

    Use literary terms!!

    Don't give up!!! You will pass the next one. Concentrate on using literary terms that seem relevant to your essay topic. I would also suggest working with Frances Sussna. She is an excellent English tutor. She will even work with you by phone. Her new phone number is 650-283-7955.
     
  9. Ms.Barbra

    Ms.Barbra New Member

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    Feb 23, 2006

    Additional Help

    Anyone..?
    I too have taken the CSET III twice and have not passed. The first time I took Tests 1 & 2 and passed no problem. I even used the study guide How to beat the Cset from this forum to help me prepare. It was extremely helpful. I took tests 3 & 4 and passed 4 the first time. I don't understand what I need to focus on for studying. I received a score of 180 the first time :eek: and really tried hard to better prepare myself for the second time around. This test (1/21/06) I received a score of 206!!! How frustrating. I felt like I understood the questions/literary texts better but I struggle in carefully analyzing the literature to be able to recognize and include specific literary terms. Anyone have any suggestions? I have printed study guides for lit terms and have focused on that. Each time the score guidelines state lack of knowledge and Depth of understanding. This is SOOOO Vague and not helpful. I am contemplating a test prep class but would like to see what others have to recommend first. How can you prepare to test for an essay that can encompass such a wide literary time period. I am desperate for help.
    Ms. Barbra
     
  10. tmrivas

    tmrivas New Member

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    Feb 24, 2006

    Thank you so much! I will definitely be calling! Hope to see you next Thursday!
     
  11. TeacherGroupie

    TeacherGroupie Moderator

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    Those who need classes or tutoring a little farther south or would like to explore distance options might want to send me a private message.
     
  12. oceano5

    oceano5 New Member

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    Feb 25, 2006

    Would anyone know of any classes or tutoring for English Subsets III and IV available for those of us located on the Central CA Coast?
     
  13. TeacherGroupie

    TeacherGroupie Moderator

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    Feb 27, 2006

    Ms.Barbra, let me congratulate you on increasing your score 26 points - that's extremely impressive, and you should be proud! And you've got just 14 points to go, and that's a fairly bridgeable gap.

    As to Subtest III, it really isn't about WHEN the works were written, so please don't worry so much about the span of time. Instead, it's about analyzing HOW the works do what they do, either as works of literature or as works of non-literary prose. And "knowledge", on CSET exams, is generally about showing off that you know and can use the vocabulary of the field.
     
  14. moonman

    moonman New Member

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    Apr 17, 2006

    Did you ever find any help. Do not feel like a major dumbass. I am in the same boat as your are,and I am completely frustrated. I got my results today, and....... I am still frustrated!!! I am tired of failing!!! Did you find anything?
     
  15. ms.JLG

    ms.JLG Rookie

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    Aug 30, 2006

    the Subtest III blues

    I'm in the same boat Tina Marie. I passed the 3 subtests the first try and have now failed subtest III twice now. I'm so frustrated. I consider myself a strong writer, but I'm still having trouble. I am also in OC, so if you are planning on getting a study group together for the Sept. 06 test, I would love to participate.

    Thanks! And good luck!
     
  16. tmrivas

    tmrivas New Member

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    Aug 30, 2006

    Hey there! I finally passed in the May 06 test and it was thanks to Karen's class. DEFINITELY call her up! One of the items she went over with us was one of the pieces in III and I truly believe that it was her helping with the analysis of it that got me through it.

    I'm actually on my way to my first day of work as a HS English teacher. ;) So, don't get discouraged because it CAN BE DONE!

    Lots of luck!

    ~Tina-Marie
     
  17. ms.JLG

    ms.JLG Rookie

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    Thanks Tina-Marie! I will definitely call Karen! And Congratulations and good luck on your first day!! :)
     
  18. TeacherGroupie

    TeacherGroupie Moderator

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    Wait a minute: she's using a passage that actually occurs on CSET English? That's a good way to get busted big time by NES.
     
  19. TessieMcArthur

    TessieMcArthur Rookie

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    English Subtest III

    Is the McDermott class through the LAUSD, or is it a private class? Is is associated with the NES in some way? I'm looking for as much advice as I get before I take Subtest III again--maybe this class is the best way to go? I'm finding alot of people struggling with the same problem, but few concrete answers. Suggestions anyone? It's the literary analysis that is causing me problems. --Tessie
     
  20. TeacherGroupie

    TeacherGroupie Moderator

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    You might find the SparkCharts on poetry and English literary terms helpful (these are sold by Barnes & Noble): note that the "knowledge" rubric in CSET constructed responses is at least partly about slinging around the correct technical terms.

    There's also a thread (launched by my own immodest self) that might help a little at http://forums.atozteacherstuff.com/showthread.php?t=20786.
     
  21. ravenvader

    ravenvader New Member

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    hi, my name is Arman and I just left a message on your machine. I'm taking the test this Sat and would love to join you on Thursday of this week if you are helping others and have room for one more. thanks for all you do...
     
  22. creativemonster

    creativemonster Cohort

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    wooo hooo!!! Just home from cset subtest three. Spent far longer on it than I expected but hey, I needed the time. Here's hoping I NEVER have to take it again. May everyone who tested today get the score they desire. I actually feel like I answered to the best of my ability, which means that if I flunked (again) I will bite the bullet and look into getting tutoring. Oh, so relieved that it's done for now. Next step: how to wait four weeks to find out if I passed. Thank you to all who gave study tips. ah, done! Going to see a play tonight but wishing I had time to get a run in - I feel like I'm not ready to sit in a chair any longer.:)
     
  23. TeacherGroupie

    TeacherGroupie Moderator

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    Make sure you get that run in tomorrow, then - and have a really terrific time tonight, okay?
     
  24. lshabtai

    lshabtai New Member

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    i was intertrested in taking you classes for the cset how can i findonformation on the classes?
     
  25. TeacherGroupie

    TeacherGroupie Moderator

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    Reply to the private message I've sent you.

    Where in the state are you located?
     
  26. lshabtai

    lshabtai New Member

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    I'm located in los angeles in the san fernando valley
     
  27. Mrs.Wop

    Mrs.Wop Rookie

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    Also a dumbass...

    I have now taken the CSET subtest III for a third time. The last 2 times I scored exactly the same...204. I'm getting really frustrated and honestly, I'm rethinking my career path. I love to write and have been told that I'm good at it but this is getting ridiculous. Does anyone have a tutor in the San Diego???? Or maybe even some great tips that will help?
     
  28. TeacherGroupie

    TeacherGroupie Moderator

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    Whoa, whoa, whoa. Not passing a subtest isn't a reflection on you personally, nor on you as a teacher, nor on you as a writer.

    What are you seeing on side 2 of your score report?

    I think you've got private messages blocked. The next time you're logged in, please use the Forum Jump button at the bottom right of the page to navigate to the User Control Panel; click on the Edit Options link on the left and scroll down to the dialog box for private messages. (If you enable private messages, it makes lots of sense to enable email notification of them, too.)
     
  29. sallyhurts

    sallyhurts Rookie

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    It took me three times to pass subtest III. I feel what might have helped me get a passing score the final time was that I focused on answering each individual bullet point question that was asked. I wasn't even familiar with either of the passages, I just stuck to answering every question that was asked.
     
  30. TeacherGroupie

    TeacherGroupie Moderator

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    You bet. Those bullet points are good guidance as to what the scorers are looking for.
     
  31. Mrs.Wop

    Mrs.Wop Rookie

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    The results say that I passed one of the essays but that the second had codes s,d...Now I can't find the paper they sent me but it was I believe support and depth and breadth. Someone else suggested Norton Anthologies for a review. Do you have any advice? Thanks so much!
     
  32. TeacherGroupie

    TeacherGroupie Moderator

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    The codes: p, k, s, d.

    p = purpose: roughly, what the question is getting at overall - the main points, preferably named with their technical terms. If there were a CSET English Subtest III question having to do with rhythm in poetry, your answer would need to invoke the technical term meter.

    k = knowledge: what you know about the question. In discussing meter in a Subtest III response, you'd need to show what meter for in poetry and you need to discuss its technical aspects, using terminology like syllable, foot, iamb, pentameter, feminine rhyme, and so on.

    s = support: how you shore up your answer. In discussing meter, you'd need to give or concoct examples of different kinds of feet and meters.

    d = depth and breadth of knowledge. Not only does your Subtest III response need to show you handling purpose, knowledge, and support successfully, it needs to show you handling them at a post-secondary level of sophistication and insight.
     
  33. TessieMcArthur

    TessieMcArthur Rookie

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    English Subtest III

    I did not pass the English Subtest III my first time around, which is frustrating when I had always considered writing to be a strength. I also passed one of the essays--the one evaluating a persuasive argument--but fell short on the literary analysis. I wish that the CCTC would provide more sample questions and responses, but they don't. When I was preparing to take the test again, I took some advice given on this site and studied up on literary terms. Sparknotes has a sheet of terms that you can download for a fee. Also M.H. Abrams book, A Glossary of Literary Terms, is helpful. I also used the book, Literature and the Writing Process, by McMahan, Day and Funk as a study tool. It includes literary works and sample papers and evaluations. They don't match the type I've seen on the CSET exam exactly, but I did find the book helpful. Also the Orange County Department of Education provides classes and materials to help pass the exam. I did not take the classes, but I did buy the support materials for each of the exams. I didn't find the one for Subtest III to be as helpful as the others were, but it did provided some help. Actually, the guide for Subtest I was in some more useful as a study guide for Subtest III since it provided a comprehensive overview of literature in historical context and included information on literary terminology, poetry analysis, etc. In closing, I did pass my exam the next time around. I still found it difficult. I left hoping I provided the knowledge, support and depth they were looking for, but without any great feeling of certainty that I had nailed it. I took a LONG time at the test site--three hours, or so, for this one test. I took careful notes to insure that I included plenty of literary terminology and underline supporting text to use in my essay. It paid off because I did pass--phew! I still did better on evaluating the persuasive argument, but at least I did well enough on the literary essay to pass. I hope this helps.
     
  34. Mrs.Wop

    Mrs.Wop Rookie

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    Thank you for all of your suggestions. I did access the site for Orange County and saw the support materials but was skeptical about the benefits. Thanks again! Kim
     
  35. Mrs.Wop

    Mrs.Wop Rookie

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    I am taking the subtest III for the 4th time now. Have you passed yet? Can you give me any advice? I feel like a complete idiot!
     
  36. TeacherGroupie

    TeacherGroupie Moderator

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    You indicate above that you thought your score reports showed s and d. Is that the case for the current score report?
     
  37. Mrs.Wop

    Mrs.Wop Rookie

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    This time I think it was s & k. I got so mad that I threw it in the trash but I'm pretty sure that's what it said. The funny thing is that I pass the first essay each time, it's the 2nd one that I don't get through for various reasons.
     
  38. TeacherGroupie

    TeacherGroupie Moderator

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    That's not that uncommon, actually.
     
  39. SD Teacher

    SD Teacher Rookie

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    For those of you looking for a really good CSET prep course: I took a prep course through my school district, San Diego Unified School District(SDUSD). If you do not live in San Diego, the huge test prep folder that you could get at the class says on the first page, "Prepared for the Orange County Department of Education," so if I were anywhere in SoCal and needing a good study book, I would try contacting them and seeing if I could get, or purchase it from them (it has TONS of great stuff in it, just don't get intimidated by how much is in it!). Anyone can go to SDUSD's CSET prep classes (they have classes for at least 4 of the CSET exams, but I don't know how many they have). The classes are free for SDUSD employees, and $65 for non-employees. I have no personal interest in recommending the class, except that they REALLY, REALLY helped me pass! We were scheduled to meet 6 times in the evenings (2 hours each time, so worth the money), and then our instructor even volunteered his own time to do an additional "cram session" right before the exam. The instructor for my class is a retired English teacher that taught AP classes for years, so he knew what he was talking about. I can't post SDUSD's website because I am a "new member" here, but you can google it and I'm guessing that you can find more info on their website. Hope that helps!
     
  40. cal_english82

    cal_english82 Rookie

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    ok so i was in full freak-out mode today and got a bunch of stuff for subtest III. while in B&N I happened upon the Sparknotes AP Power Pack: English - Language & Composition. when i opened it I thought I had died and gone to heaven. the materials cover almost everything listed on the cset subtest III test description and it's only 15 bucks.

    I've also started reading How to Read Literature Like a Professor. It is a very interesting and easy read. The author relates important analytical stuff with catchy simplistic phrases making them easy to recall. once i get to the other books i'll list them here, as well, if they are any good.
     
  41. TeacherGroupie

    TeacherGroupie Moderator

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    The SparkNotes PowerPacks are indeed good. So's Foster's How To Read... - though I don't know that it goes into enough detail for CSET English Subtest III.
     

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