How Many Times Did You Take The Basic Skills Test/PRAXIS BEFORE You Passed It?

Discussion in 'Basic Skills Tests' started by Suburban Gal, Apr 3, 2007.

  1. TeacherGroupie

    TeacherGroupie Moderator

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    Apr 16, 2007

    Oh, dear.

    So you good people know the material but you go into the test and you freeze up, you become a different person, you lose confidence.

    Okay, humor me here a little: think of something that you can call this, um, thing that sounds like something you could do and maybe even enjoy. Let's do some brainstorming here, please: I want to see a response from everyone who's feeling gut-wrenched about a basic skills test.

    (Yes, TeacherGroupie gives homework.)
     
  2. Anyalee

    Anyalee Companion

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    Apr 16, 2007

    I'm waiting for a test in social studies to be finalized in Wyoming. Until I take it I will not be HQ because I have a Social Studies education degree. Since we have to take classes in so many different areas- I am HQ only in Psychology (which doesn't count for much). So once they finally do get the test done- I'll have no idea what it'll be like! Ack!
     
  3. TeacherGroupie

    TeacherGroupie Moderator

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    Apr 16, 2007

    You'll be in fairly much the same boat as all the other single subject test takers, in fact - let me suggest visiting the Single Subject Tests subforum to find out what everyone else is doing.

    Which organization does Wyoming's tests? - Praxis or NES?
     
  4. Zanadu

    Zanadu Companion

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    I try to not think of my upcoming test as a test but rather a chance for me to show my stuff. It worked okay when the test was in the distant future but I've found that as it draws nearer(May 2) I'm still freaking out. I haven't been able to sleep for the past couple of nights. It's been weighing heavy on my mind. I don't know if I have studied too much or not enough. If I don't pass this I have to delay my program again.
     
  5. TeacherGroupie

    TeacherGroupie Moderator

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    Okay, smcneely, what else could you call the upcoming.... event, other than the-four-letter-word-that-begins-with-T? What names can you come up with that diminish its power a little?

    Or let's try this: Suppose someone you're very fond of were in exactly your position, sleeplessness and all. Skilled and tender-hearted teacher that you are, what suggestions might you have to help this suffering soul?
     
  6. Zanadu

    Zanadu Companion

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    Apr 19, 2007

    I had to think about this since test and assessment are what keeps popping up. How about "key". This is the key to achieving all that I want. If I do this right the door will open.

    As for what I tell students I see in school, I usually say to relax, take a deep breath, all this knowledge is in their head. If they relax they can feel it flow easier. Tensing up makes it get stuck. I also tell them to skip the questions that are hard and come back to them after doing the ones they know how to do. I don't know if it helps them or not.

    It's been really strange lately. I've been subbing in Algebra II classes and doing the worksheets given to the students and it all comes back to me and even more, it's challenging and fun! I see a word problem on my pre"key" and it's like I'm looking at a foreign language. Maybe I should try to see it in the light that I need to do this to help someone else do it too or maybe as a puzzle.

    I feel like I'm hijacking someones thread. I apologize if that's the case.
     
  7. TeacherGroupie

    TeacherGroupie Moderator

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    Apr 19, 2007

    Somehow, smcneely, my dear, I don't think you're hijacking this thread at all.

    I like "key". I like that a lot. Keys open things like doors and coffee cans (all right, some of us are old enough to remember coffee cans like that...) and they make things like cars start.

    Now then: With respect to this... key... that you're facing, you're your own student. When you're stuck, please talk to your stuck self as kindly and gently as possible, and tell your stuck self exactly what you just told me you'd tell the kids in school. And this ties into one of the points you made: seeing the word problem in the light of trying to help someone else crack it. That way, instead of your fear working against you, your teacher-gotta-help mentality is working for you.

    And as to re-visioning as a puzzle: yes, yes, YES!

    (By the way, this kind of insight is the sort of thing that makes TeacherGroupie's week.)
     
  8. MzB

    MzB Rookie

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    Apr 19, 2007

    Thank God I only took them all once. I didn't study...:sorry: :D
     
  9. Zanadu

    Zanadu Companion

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    Apr 19, 2007

    Thanks Teachergroupie. I tried the puzzle outlook today and I did quite well on my pre-key math section. (Math is my greatest weakness.) It's taking a little longer than 60 minutes though. I'll have to continue working on that.
     
  10. TeacherGroupie

    TeacherGroupie Moderator

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    Apr 19, 2007

    But it feels like it's coming, yes?
     
  11. Zanadu

    Zanadu Companion

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    It's getting there. I still have a couple of areas where I'm not very strong and I'm trying to not let myself get a self-defeated outlook when I get to those. I've realized that it's when I see those that my mindframe shifts from fun to Oh No! I'm hoping that if I just keeping doing lots of those problems I'll get more comfortable. I just have to find some on the internet now. I've run out of practice tests.
     
  12. JustMe

    JustMe Virtuoso

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    Apr 21, 2007

    I had to take three Praxis II tests for certification (learning theory, 2 content areas) and passed all on the first time. The learning theory is very, very easy - absolute common sense. The only issue with this specific test is the lack of time. Write your responses somewhat fast. The content tests were more difficult, but if I passed I feel that almost anyone could unless they suffer from test anxiety. I took it several months before I even student taught, that way I felt no pressure whatsoever. For those with anxiety I would suggest that. Good luck!
     
  13. Zanadu

    Zanadu Companion

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    May 2, 2007

    Took the PPST today

    Well, it's over with...I hope. I thought I was doing pretty well handling the test anxiety until this morning. I walked in and that's all the others talked about, how nervous they were. There were three math qtns I didn't answer (two of which I figured out after the fact:( ) and they stopped me mid-sentence on the final sentence of my essay. The other parts I think I did well on. We'll see in about three weeks.
     
  14. TeacherGroupie

    TeacherGroupie Moderator

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    May 2, 2007

    Sounds promising, smcneely...
     
  15. Eliza Beth

    Eliza Beth New Member

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    Sep 2, 2014

    You can pass on the first try.

    I took one of the new Praxis I tests they have just been giving since January, I think. I passed on the first try. I haven't been in school in almost 30 years. I took the test to qualify for a position in our county school system.

    I did very well on the reading, a perfect score, and almost perfect on the writing. The math was a different story. I passed and that is all I can say.
     
  16. Nab

    Nab Companion

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    Sep 2, 2014

    I'm glad that some people only had to take the tests once or twice. I had a friend who take the tests 22 times in a two years span. She literally kept missing the score by one point.
     
  17. vsimpkins

    vsimpkins Comrade

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    Sep 2, 2014

    These tests don't make you a better teacher, it just shows that you can make good guesses or you're a good test taker. I was one of those who took it several times. I found that I needed to take more breaks to think about some answers.
     
  18. TeacherGroupie

    TeacherGroupie Moderator

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    Sep 2, 2014

    It's true that basic skills tests aren't intended to show whether one will be a good teacher. It's false that all they show is whether one can guess well or is a good test taker - though they do tend to reflect, to some degree, whether one thinks of oneself as a bad test taker.

    For the record, I subscribe to the view that there's no shame, nor any need to shame, in needing to take a given test more than once.
     
  19. vickilyn

    vickilyn Magnifico

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    If I could add my personal opinion it would be this - once you pass it, I see no need to volunteer the number of times it took to pass. The state cares about the passing score, so give yourself a break once the feat is accomplished, IMHO, and treat it like your age - no one really needs to have the exact number, and it is crass to ask. ;)
     
  20. kellzy

    kellzy Comrade

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    Sep 3, 2014

    Passed all of the tests the first time. Thankfully.
     
  21. katfzl

    katfzl Rookie

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    Sep 3, 2014

    So here is me. I am highly qualified in sevel subjects. Passed the other portions of Praxis I with very high scores as well as West Es/Praxis II subject tests on first try, and am certified in several states, but I can't get the score I need on one section of the praxis 1 for the state I'm in! I just need 2 points on the math portion... Tears. :(
     
  22. Darwin Capit

    Darwin Capit New Member

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    LOL I AM NOT SURE IF IS MY AGE BUT I HAVE TAKEN IT 7 N 8 AND I DO STUDY????????
     
  23. Ima Teacher

    Ima Teacher Maven

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    I'm old, so the Praxis was the NTE when I took it. I passed the first time. I've taken the ACT, NTE, AND GRE. Passed all on first try with good scores. Never studied for any of them. We had to score above the 50th percentile on the ITBS for 12th grade to be admitted to the teacher education program. Over half the people in my group didn't make it! I scored 99th percentile on every test, so they thought I was a genius. LOL

    I've always been a good test taker. I test well. I'm not that smart.
     
  24. Nab

    Nab Companion

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    Oct 1, 2014

    Took the new PRAXIS I Core Math last month (on the tenth). Still haven't gotten my scores yet, but I'm 100% positive I'll have to take it a second or third time. But, seeing everyone hear talk about their times, it makes me feel a bit better. I'm not the only one that will have to take a test more than once.
     
  25. bora

    bora Rookie

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    Oct 1, 2014

    I took Praxis 1 this summer. Math was so easy. 6-th grade Math. I couldn't believe my eyes. I thought they were "tricky" questions. Wasted time rereading them and didn't finish them all. Lol I passed it.
     
  26. MissCeliaB

    MissCeliaB Aficionado

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    I passed all of the PRAXIS tests the first time, as well as the FTCE tests. One of the English content ones was a close call, because it was so long and I almost ran out of time. The PRAXIS I tests skills that go no higher than middle school. It wasn't a problem for me.
     
  27. teach2014

    teach2014 Rookie

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    Took it once and passed. The cliff notes help with that. Took the Praxis I General Knowledge and FSTE General Knowledge and passed both utilizing Cliff notes.
     
  28. Guitart

    Guitart Companion

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    Dec 10, 2014

    I can only chime in on Praxis 2.
    I'm not "failing", but rather I cannot clear my hurdle: 165. Trying to get my license in Iowa. My highest so far is 159. Here is a list of states I "passed":
    PLT: GRADES 7–12 (0624/5624)
    AL – 153
    AR – 157
    DC – 157
    HI – 157
    LA – 157
    MD – 157
    ME - 157
    MS – 157
    NC – 157
    ND – 157
    NV – 157
    RI - 157
    SC – 157
    SD – 157
    TN – 155
    WV - 157
    DODEA – 158
    AS – 157
    GU - 157

    Here are the only state I did not "pass".
    IA - 165
    KS – 160
    KY – 160
    UT – 160

    I have my Illinois license so I am not a total failure, but I sure feel like a loser because I can't get a license in Iowa.
     
  29. TeacherGroupie

    TeacherGroupie Moderator

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    Dec 10, 2014

    Hugs, Guitart. Have you taught?
     
  30. Guitart

    Guitart Companion

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    Dec 10, 2014

    I have been subbing for 3 years in Iowa under a sub-authorization. It is an income but I really need a contract & benefits.

    Today I signed up to take the test again Jan 17. This is my 4th time. Previously, I used every free library and Internet resource designed to pass the Praxis 2. NONE prepared me with valuable info to achieve a 165. This time I purchased the practice test package offered by ETS. If this time I do not score a 165, I will need to hire a black magic voodoo queen or some other supernatural solution. I have already talked to God and apparently he is busy on testing days.
     
  31. czacza

    czacza Multitudinous

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    Dec 10, 2014

    Once
     
  32. TeacherGroupie

    TeacherGroupie Moderator

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    It's an income, Guitart, but it's also experience in the field. Here's one big trick for tests like this: pay attention to the specific population or audience specified in the question stem. An approach that's perfect for fourth graders is likely not to be the best for seventh graders.
     
  33. Guitart

    Guitart Companion

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    Dec 11, 2014

    All of my prep material has been specific to the 7-12 grade level test. In addition, my sub-auth is only valid for secondary. I am trying to apply everything from study material to job experience to beat this score.

    Like some here, I have never been a good standardized test taker. I would rather write a 100 page research paper to prove my knowledge and effectiveness than to ever take a timed test. It appears that Iowa is looking for a generation of highly qualified test takers rather than teachers.
     
  34. WarriorPrncss

    WarriorPrncss Companion

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    Dec 11, 2014

    Holy moley....

    I knew I wanted to be a teacher since I was a kid so I took the CBEST my senior year in high school and passed it on the first try.

    If I hadn't taken it yet I'd be FLIPPING out seeing people say it took 4, 5, 6,... 14, 15--- times.
     
  35. TeacherGroupie

    TeacherGroupie Moderator

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    Dec 11, 2014

    Guitart, I'm not saying your study materials are deficient, nor that you are. I'm telling you something about multiple choice questions. The test presents scenarios with students and questions about the scenarios, yes? Typically, of the four possible answers, one is fairly stupid; one somewhat stupid; and two look pretty good. Of those two, one will fall short because (a) it's true, but it's true in a different domain of the test (to take an example from elsewhere, "conservation" means something different in art than it does in human development), (b) it's a worthwhile approach, but not for the specific need that the question stem addresses, or (c) it's a worthwhile approach, but the other answer better addresses the age group given in the question stem.

    For you, given your background in art, let me suggest this: Visualize the scenario as a painting. Who exactly is there? How does each of the possible answers reinforce the artist's message?
     
  36. Innsmouth

    Innsmouth Rookie

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    I passed the Praxis Core on the first try. I just found out today. I studied for one month using Praxis Core for Dummies.

    Please let me know if you have any questions or want my opinion on anything related to the test. I was pretty nervous about it, but I easily passed all the sections. I'm sure you've heard this before, but the most important thing is to make sure you practice under timed conditions. I didn't get the chance to properly answer at least 10 questions in the math portion because I got too concerned with checking my work.
     
  37. Guitart

    Guitart Companion

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    Dec 17, 2014

    I never had to take the Praxis core. I am assuming it is the test to be admitted to an Ed program. Illinois allowed "passing" scores on the ACT+Writing.

    Has ANYONE here scored a 165 on the Praxis II PLT (7-12)?
     
  38. catnfiddle

    catnfiddle Moderator

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    Hadn't looked at my score for a long time but found them in my filing cabinet. I scored a 173 on the PLT, which is on the low side, but enough to pass.
     
  39. Guitart

    Guitart Companion

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    That is an amazing score! Most Praxis participating states are requiring 157. Iowa is the highest and stands alone with 165 (raised from 162). How long ago? I wonder if scoring, number of questions, weight of essays has changed over the years because a 173 is far beyond any current state requirement. That is such a huge cushion, you would never have to take it again for ANY state.

    I got a 172 on my Praxis 2 Art content and can retire knowing it will outlast any future scoring requirements.
     
  40. darlingvikki2

    darlingvikki2 New Member

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    I just took the CBEST earlier today. I passed with flying colors on the reading part, but the math section is a different story. I got 37, which is the lowest score possible you could get on any section that won't hinder you from failing the exam. I really hope I get at least a 41 on the writing just for my sanity. Math has always been a huge struggle for me so I hope that by learning to teach math, I will finally end up learning it as well. I wish all of you out there luck :)
     

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