What are my chances..

Discussion in 'Basic Skills Tests' started by Cateacher2b, Feb 28, 2006.

  1. Cateacher2b

    Cateacher2b Companion

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    of having passed the CBEST? I received the unofficial Math and English scores yesterday but the Writing scores won't be released until 03/06..On English I have a 57 and Math a 63 for a total of 121. A total of 123, between all 3 subsets is required to pass, with no score lower than a 37 on any section. My concern is that English, I thought, was my strong suit-but I scored higher in Math. That has me concerned with my writing score. What are my odds, if you can guess, of my passing?
     
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  3. TeacherGroupie

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    I see SOME students who post Reading and Math scores like yours and then inexplicably come up short on Essay, but I don't see very darned many. If you wrote two reasonably structured formal essays and didn't make any major mistakes, I'd say your chances are quite good. And if you didn't pass, you will have come very, very close in ways that are entirely fixable - you probably wrote something interesting instead of something structured.
     
  4. TeacherGroupie

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    Both of you, and anyone else similarly situated: Please go on the CBEST Web site and take a look at the sample essays - not the ones that scored 4, but the ones that scored 2. If you think both your essays were as good as or better than those, you probably did fine. If not, we can talk.
     
  5. Malcolm

    Malcolm Enthusiast

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    I'll second that. IMHO if you feel you can write decently for any particular audience, you are likely to score at least a 37. I took CBEST with no preparation and got 80 on the reading section, 75 on the math section , and 41 on the writing section. I am a good business and technical writer, but haven't written the kind of five paragraph essays the graders are looking for in years. Anyone who does a little research and preparation ought to be able to do better than I did.
     
  6. error_404

    error_404 Companion

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    OMG, Malcolm! I beat you on CBEST Math--HAH! Er, that's totally inappropriate behavior for these boards, right? But you know what? I totally can't do those questions where they ask you to find alternate ways of solving the same problem--they stump me almost every time.

    As I mentioned in a another thread, I'm also a bit concerned about my writing scores cause I kinda blew off studying and honestly cannot even remember the last time I tried to write so much as a coherent paragraph (let alone an entire essay) without the benefit of a computer. But thanks for referring us back to the practice essays from the online test, TG. Pretty sure I did a more thorough job than the 2 point essay samples on there (in spite of my paltry amount of paragraphs), so should be ok. But I dunno, if Malcolm only got a 41, then that's slight cause for concern. We get the writing scores in a few more days anyway, right?
     
  7. Malcolm

    Malcolm Enthusiast

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    Congratulations on the math score, error! I usually make some dumb mistake on math that costs me a few points, even when I know how to solve the problems. I get the feeling that I have some form of mathematical dyslexia sometimes. It is wierd. Somtimes when I am solving a problem for the class, I will say one thing and write something else. Usually, what I write is correct. Almost, like there are two different people there. Oh, Oh!

    No, my 41 should not be a cause of concern. It should be a cause of hope. It shows that you can get a 41 going in totally unprepared. Part of my problem is that I, like you, seldom write anything without the benefit of a computer. I just start writing whatever comes to mind, then reorganize as many time as necessary to get the desired result. It is very efficient, much easier than organizing all your thoughts first then writing a finished product in one fell swoop.

    FWIW as straight forward, if time consuming to prepare for, as CSET math was for me, I would dread taking the CSET English subtests that are all CR. I don't have a lot of experience with the kind of writing they expect, and I was never very good at it to start with.
     
  8. TeacherGroupie

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    error, if you beat Malcolm in math, you don't even NEED his 41 in essay writing: you can perfectly well pass with a 37. And scoring 2 across the board will give you more points than that.

    Malcolm, your remarks on English single subject constructed response made me smile. Subtest IV responses are fairly straightforward short answers, and I'd bet you'd do just fine. Subtest III responses are about the closest thing that CSET offers to A Real Live Essay, but even there things aren't that bad: the limited time imposes some limits on the level of free-form bloviating that the scorers can reasonably expect.
     
  9. error_404

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    Yeah, and I tied him on the reading section! Suddenly, I don't care about passing the CBEST at all--I only care about beating Malcolm! ;) Bwahaahahaaaa. So it looks like I have to get at least a 40 on the writing section. My essays were seriously only 3-4 paragraphs long though (but I filled the whole writing area), so I hope they don't penalize me too much. I was so irritable while I was taking the test that I couldn't be bothered to write outlines. Whoops.

    Bloviate is not in my American Oxford English Dictionary, btw, but it is a dictionary.com "word of the day."
     
  10. TeacherGroupie

    TeacherGroupie Moderator

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    error, you almost made me choke on my tea! Funnnny!

    Five paragraphs is a target; as long as you indented your paragraphs, and each of your paragraphs was about One Idea That Supports The Thesis, you will have done fine.
     
  11. error_404

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    Yeah, that's what I'm saying I really screwed-up. One of my essays had, um, i think 3 paragraphs and the other had 4 (one of which I forgot to indent, so I just put a big Paragraph sign in front of where it was meant to begin). But can they fail you just for not having enough paragraphs? Basically, I wrote a thorough second paragraph and realized that I was already running out of room on the answer sheet. And I didn't use any clever words like "bloviate!" Oh no, I'm dooooomed.

    Whatever. I've been walking on air since I got my CSET scores. Even my moronic performance on the CBEST writing section can't bring me down now. I don't think....
     
  12. error_404

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    Ah sorry, just reread your post. Haven't had any coffee yet. Come to think of it, I'm not sure I even indented my paragraphs. I think on the first essay I may have just skipped a line to start a new paragraph. Wow, maybe I did fail! I mean, really. Do people want someone who doesn't even know the proper way to begin a paragraph teaching their kids? Argh.
     
  13. TeacherGroupie

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    If memory serves, error, you were quite certain you were "doooomed" (did I get the right number of O's?) on CSET too...

    You mention HAVING multiple paragraphs, which means you must have indicated them SOMEhow; that should keep the scorers happy.

    And it's a very good thing NOT to use words like bloviate, actually; it's disrespectful, and teachers are supposed to be Nice, no?

    If you didn't pass, I will be surprised.
     
  14. error_404

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    Haha. I was just being melodramatic for comic relief, of course.

    I suspect I managed to pull off a 37, but I wouldn't be entirely shocked if I didn't. If I have to take that section over again, I'll deal, and hopefully the admissions committees of the schools I'm applying to will as well. A low score would obviously look like a bit of a fluke when considered alongside of my other test scores and my well written/organized statement of purpose. Like I said, now that I've put the CSET behind me, nothing is gonna stress me out ever again!
     
  15. TeacherGroupie

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    If there's a single district in California that's put off by a test taker having to take CBEST twice - especially when said test taker absolutely rocks on two sections on the first go - I'd be floored.

    Since I know you haven't gone off chocolate for Lent, go have some, hm?
     
  16. Malcolm

    Malcolm Enthusiast

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    Oh, they should be very used to folks having to take CBEST more than once. I remember all the moaning from teachers when it was instituted.
     
  17. error_404

    error_404 Companion

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    OK, I officially deserve to be smacked. I got a 75 on the writing section. I'm so embarrassed that I can't even bring myself to gloat about beating Malcolm. :eek:
     
  18. TeacherGroupie

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    error, sweetie, I am about as UNsurprised as I can be that you walloped this thing. Though I am chuckling quietly into my lunch.
     
  19. Malcolm

    Malcolm Enthusiast

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    Congratulations! Go ahead and gloat, you earned it! Now take CSET Math, you'll probably beat me in that, too. You know, somtimes there is an advantage to being young and smart.
     
  20. TeacherGroupie

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    Clearly you're just telling us you're not young, Malcolm. Hmmm.... oh, but I seem to recall you've mentioned a wife. Shucks. ;^)
     
  21. Malcolm

    Malcolm Enthusiast

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    Hmmm... Does that mean I am saying I am not smart, too? Nope, no wife.
     
  22. TeacherGroupie

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    Old folks, unite! (The word I originally intended wasn't exactly "folks".... but since I'm using this of myself, too, I trust no one will grouse.)

    Malcolm, anyone who can pass any CSET single subject Math is smarter by far than I, at least in math. So I assumed your self-effacing remark was true only of age.
     
  23. error_404

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    Hah. As gratifying as it was to beat you on CBEST, Malcolm, I think I'll cash in my chips and call it a night. I have no business taking CSET Math. I'm putting away my #2 pencils until I have to take RICA in, what, a year and a half or something? Sheesh.

    Oh, and for what it's worth, I'm not that young. Coming up on a potentially devastating birthday, in fact. (Let's hope I've moved back out of my parents' house by then!) Anyway, being old and smart isn't such a bad deal either, I'd imagine. ;)
     
  24. TeacherGroupie

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    Old and smart beats the heck out of dead, that's for sure.

    "Potentially devastating birthday"? Cute, error.
     
  25. error_404

    error_404 Companion

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    Haha! Fair enough, TG.

    I don't know why 30 suddenly seems so scary. If I can spend the big day alone on the top of a nice mountain or on an isolated beach somewhere, I'm sure I'll manage all right. It's just the actual day that I'm freaked out about--not the prospect of leaving my twenties behind. OK, so maybe I'm lying....
     

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