Before You Take TExES





7 Important Aspects of TExES

TExES (Texas Examinations of Educator Standards) is conducted by the Texas Education Agency (TEA) and the Educational Testing Service (ETS) for persons who want to become educators in Texas. The certified educators are offered entry level positions, as a first career step, in public schools. Texas Essential Knowledge and Skills (TEKS), is the foundation, on which these tests are based. It is administered in two formats- the Computer Administered Test (TExES-CAT, http://cms.texes-ets.org/cat/) and the  Paper-Based Test (PBT). A candidate can opt for any one of the two formats of test administration. Moreover, differently-abled persons are also eligible for taking the exam. Please visit the TExES website (http://cms.texes-ets.org/) for further details.

Format of TExES

The series of tests are administered in a number of subjects, such as, Agricultural Science and Technology, American Sign Language, Art, Bilingual Education Supplemental, Business Education and a lot more, as listed on http://cms.texes-ets.org/texes/prepmaterials/tests-at-a-glance/. Not all tests are administered in both the online and paper–based formats. Some of them are administered in only one of the two formats. There are different tests for different certifications. You should contact the  administration authorities for knowing the tests that you should take for obtaining a desired certification.

Most of the questions have multiple-choice answer patterns except for those in the BTLPT-Spanish test. Some of the segments require one to appear for more than one test, in the combined or component form. The time taken for TExES 5 hours each, with the exception of BTLPT- Spanish, which takes a longer time.

Scoring is done on scaled scores awarded to candidates from the range of 100-300. The passing scaled score in a subject is 240. This is the minimum score that a person, to be certified as an educator, should attain in the subject that he or she takes in TExES. No negative scoring is awarded for wrong answers to questions in the test papers.

7 Important Aspects of this Test

Here are 7 important points that one should bear in mind before taking the TExES:

  1. Appear for TExES only when prepared thoroughly - The TExES has different tests for testing the skills of test takers in the content areas of their choice. Hence, these subject-based test papers contain adequate number of questions, which test the basic and advanced levels of knowledge of the test takers, in the subject(s) in which they want to be tested. Hence, for performing well, one should be very thorough with his/her preparation.

  2. The TExES examinees should have the capacity to endure the long and stressful examination hall experience- All the tests, except for the BTPLT-Spanish test, are each of five hours duration. Hence, the test taker should have the capacity to spend a long time in the examination hall, and patiently answering a large number of tough questions.

  3. A TExES test taker should be thoroughly conversant with the details of the test he or she wants to take- The different sections differ in their content areas and other subject-specific criteria. A person who wants to appear for this exam should go through the official website http://cms.texes-ets.org/texes/prepmaterials/tests-at-a-glance/ to get detailed information on these individual tests.

  4. It is better to make intelligent guesses, instead of not attempting, when one does not know the answer to TExES questions- As the questions do not carry any negative marking, it is better for the test takers to try answer all questions of the test, by intelligently deducing answers to questions to which they do not know the exact answers. It is better to attempt questions, rather than to leave them blank, in a test where negative marking is not allowed.

  5. Test retake rules differ for the online and paper-based formats of TExES- The TExES (PBT) does not define any minimum resting period between two subsequent attempts, but TExES (CAT) does impose a restriction on the time interval (a minimum of 60 days) for the same. Hence, one should bear this point in mind before choosing the mode.

  6. Use study aids to prepare for TExES- One should prepare with the aid of study guides and other study resources to enhance the chances of success in this educator certification test. Studying in an unaided way, does not ensure success, as though one may be thorough with the concepts pertaining to the content areas that are being tested, the specific techniques to successfully tackle a large number of tricky and tough questions, with very similar answers, need to be known and practiced. This is achieved by referring to study resources specially made for the purpose.

  7. Read "On the Day of the Test" instructions carefully- It is very important for the test takers to understand, and abide by each and every instruction detailed out on the "On the Day of the Test" webpage (http://cms.texes-ets.org/texes/dayofthetest/) of the official website. This page contains information on examination hall etiquette and its requirements, and is of utmost importance. Failing to follow any of the instructions detailed out on this page, can cancel a candidate's permission to attempt the test, no matter how good his preparation may be. Hence, it is important for one to read this webpage as soon as one registers, and be prepared with all the material that one is required to produce in the examination hall, as per this online document.

Conclusion

These tests are taken by teaching aspirants who want to teach in the public schools of the state of Texas. As it is fast gaining prominence amongst the teaching fraternity, there is a high demand for professionals who possess this certification.