Test Preparation for the CBEST
Preparing for CBEST in 5 steps
"CBEST" stands for "California Basic Educational Skills Test" and as the name implies, it is a test of the basic knowledge possessed by California teachers in the subjects of Reading, Math and Writing. It is administered to satisfy certain legal provisions introduced by the California state legislature with regards to the basic skills that each teacher in California (who is looking for placement and credentialing in Californian schools) must possess. Though this test may seem quite simple to most of us, it is advised that all test candidates prepare for it in advance. This way they will not have any surprises or curve-balls thrown at them on the day of the actual test. This article presents a very simple but precise 5-step plan for tackling the test.
A 5-Step CBEST Test Preparation Plan
Follow the below-mentioned steps for a hassle-free preparation and great CBEST scores:
Step 1#: Know the CBEST Test Structure By-heart
The first logical step to any test preparation must be to learn as much as possible about the test itself. Hence, learn all you need to know about the CBEST test by reading through the specifications of the test published on the CBEST website (http://www.cbest.nesinc.com/CA18_overview.asp). Also, you may take the CBEST tutorial for CAT tests at http://www.cbest.nesinc.com/CA_CBTTutorial.asp. This tutorial will help the candidates gain a simulated view of the actual test and thereafter, learn about the rules and requirements of taking the CBEST test.
Step 2#: Gather Study Materials and Sample Questions for the CBEST Test
Once you have the details about what kind of questions you could expect in the test, your next step should be to collect as many study materials and sample questions as possible. Look for study guides, books and sample questions on the internet, in book stores or in libraries. Some of the available CBEST study materials are listed below:
Free/paid CBEST study guides and sample questions are available on several websites such as
CBEST books and CDs are available on Amazon.com, BarnesAndNobles.com etc. One example of a CBEST book is "Kaplan CBEST: California Basic Education Skills Test".
Also, you could study from subject textbooks available at school or local libraries for the relevant CBEST subjects.
Step 3#: Review the Study Materials and Sample Questions
Now comes the time when you actually sit down to review all the material you have collected thus far. Before you dive into the materials, create a precise study schedule and allocate time for the review of materials for each CBEST test. Take a look at all the sample questions as you are studying to keep yourself focused and hands-on.
Step 4#: Attempt CBEST Practice Testss
Try as many practice tests as you can before your test date. You may download practice tests from the following websites:
Official CBEST CAT practice test - http://www.cbest.nesinc.com/CA_viewPT_opener.asp
Official CBEST PBT practice tests - http://www.cbest.nesinc.com/CA_viewPT_PDF_opener.asp
Free practice tests from websites such as http://www.teacherstestprep.com/cbest-practice-tests
Step 5#: Track Your Progress
With every practice test, you should be able to gauge your strengths and weaknesses and thereafter, determine if you are doing better in your weak subject areas. For topics that seem difficult to crack, you may get external help from CBEST tutors or prep classes and seek advice on studying from former test-takers.
Since CBEST is a test of your basic skills, half the battle is won when you understand the structure and contents of the test. The other half of the battle is to prepare systematically and sincerely through the study materials and practice tests. Last but not the least; don't forget to review the test rules and requirements before your test appointment so that you don't face any surprises on the D-Day. This simple philosophy, if followed, will ensure your success in the test. We wish all the CBEST applicants good luck!
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