5 Tips to Preparing for the Praxis Exam
Even after all of the coursework and years of studying, a prospective teacher must still prepare for the Praxis Exam series. The Praxis is a series of standardized tests administered by ETS (Educational Testing Service) that students hoping to enter the teaching profession will have to pass in order to begin their career.
The Praxis series is broken into two parts: the Praxis I and the Praxis II. Praxis I consists of three sections, namely reading, mathematics and writing, while the Praxis II deals with more specific topics relating to the prospective teacher’s educational track. The Praxis sections last 75, 75 and 60 minutes respectively, and consist of multiple choice and open response questions. With so many different topics covered in the series and such a long, grueling test process, students certainly face quite the challenge in passing the Praxis Exams. But you are not alone!
Here are five tips to help you prepare for taking the Praxis tests:
Knowing that you have to take sections on multiple subjects, concentrate your studying efforts on mastering the sections you are naturally weakest on. If you are better with reading comprehension and writing, focus your studying on the mathematics section of the Praxis exam. By honing in on your weaknesses and preparing appropriately, you will be better able to handle the test as a whole.
This does not mean you shouldn’t study for the sections you are naturally better at, of course. But you must pass each section of the exam, so acing one and flunking another in hopes of the scores balancing out is not an option.
2. Take Sections Separately
Unlike many standardized tests, students are able to take the different portions of the Praxis exam separately. If you can fit it in your schedule and don’t mind stretching the process out over a longer period of time, consider taking the sections on different days. By doing this, you will be able to focus all of your efforts on one topic at a time. Naturally, being able to concentrate on one section will help you excel at it before moving on to the next topic and test question type.
3. Take Advantage of Practice Tests
Even if you don’t have the time as a full-time student to take a complete prep course, you should still take advantage of all of the test preparation resources made available to you, especially practice tests. There is no better way to feel out a rigorous standardized test than to take it as many times as possible in anticipation of the actual test day. Like riding a bike, you can’t expect to get it completely right the first time you try. Visit Test Prep Review for practice test materials.
4. Organize Your Time
This sounds obvious, but all too often students will pick a date and just assume that studying for a random amount of time each day leading up to it will be sufficient. This shouldnot be the case. Gather all of your study materials and mark your calendar for specific study blocks that you can stick to. Schedule as many as necessary to allow yourself sufficient time to cover each section of the test and only after that should you select your test date. This strategy will ensure that you are scheduling the test according to your studying progress and not the other way around, which may lead to stressful cramming or, even worse, a lack of proper preparation.
5. Know the Test Specifications and Scoring
Simply knowing the topics covered is not enough to ace the Praxis test. You should be familiar with the details of each section, including time allotted, question type, scoring and more. All of these aspects will not only help you prepare for the Praxis exam, but help you feel confident that, once you’ve completed the test, you worked to its specifications and can rest assured there will be no surprises regarding your results. For details on how the Praxis exam is scored and how it breaks down, visit TAAG (Test at a Glance).
For more information about the Praxis exam, visit ETS’ website.