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English Language Arts and Reading 4-8
Study & Test Strategies

Strategy 1

Submitted by Sarah

Study Strategy

I used Certify Teacher, quizlet, and the state manual.

Testing Strategy

Lots of situation questions! Know phonemens, phonology, morphemes, etc. It's not about memorizing the defintions, its more about understanding them and how you apply them in the classrooms.

Strategy 2

Study Strategy

I used Certify Teacher, the Pass the Texes Study Guide, and the study manual from the state website.

Testing Strategy

If you are familiar with teaching concepts, the test will be easy to you. Make sure you pay attention to the "trip word," at least, the most, unlikely, etc. The test was not as hard as I thought it would be. If you don't know the answer use process of elimination and always choose the answer with the most teacher interaction or student group interaction. You get 5 hours so after I completed 50 questions I took a mental break and went back and completed the test. Make sure you are aware of the terms counting phonemes, graphemes, phonological awareness, phonemic awareness, graphic organizers, and subject/verb agreement. Quizlet was also helpful. If you go in with a positive mindset, segment and understand what the question is asking, and use process of elimination you will do just fine. I took my test on a Saturday and received my score report on a Tuesday night. I passed with a 254.

Strategy 3

Submitted by Maria

Study Strategy

First of all, I would advise one to print out a copy of the TExES English Language Arts and Reading 4-8 (117) Preparation Manual from TEA Website. Go through it, read it, make it a checklist of what it is asking for. Everything that is on there is what will be coming out. In addition to the Preparation Manual, I used my REA Luis A. Rosado Core Subjects EC-6 Book that I bought on Amazon. It had a similar outline so I decided to use it. I also used Quizlet and everything that was on there was on point. I really do recommend it because it is FREE.

Testing Strategy

I honestly was in between. I felt that I had passed it but then I felt like I had a small possibility that I could have failed it. But three days later, I got my results and I did pass! What I would really recommend is to set up your mind to actually being the teacher in each scenario and to choose the BEST answer you think it is. Good Luck!

Strategy 4

Submitted by Taylor

Study Strategy

I mostly used Certify Teacher to prepare for the test. I also used notes from my previous classes that I've taken that had to do with ELAR content. I studied for about 30 minutes a day, for about 3 weeks. I feel that Certify Teacher helped a lot with how the test is set up, but eventually it became not as effective because I began memorizing the answers.

Testing Strategy

The test is difficult. It seemed as if every answer was correct on the test. I did the first 50 questions and then went back to the ones that I had marked for review. After that, I took a bathroom/mental break and came back and powered through the last 50 questions. When reading the questions, understand what they're REALLY asking. I left the testing center, just knowing I had failed the test. I took the test on a Wednesday and got my results on a Friday morning and I had passed on the first try! ! You can do this!

Strategy 5

Submitted by Texas Teachers

Study Strategy

I used the TExES Practice Test Manual purchased at L&M Bookstore for approximately $24.00. Be sure you understand terminology used by educators and what is being asked of you. Do not skim questions. Comprehension is the key.

Testing Strategy

It was somewhat easier than I expected because I expected to be tested on ELA and Reading type questions, not how to teach it. Study for the test as if you are already a teacher.

Strategy 6

Submitted by Texas Teachers

Study Strategy

I used the workbook they provided in combination with the free practice test to determine the reasoning behind the answers.

Testing Strategy

It was harder than I expected. Make sure you take a break in between to give your mind a break.

Strategy 7

Submitted by Texas Teachers

Study Strategy

I used the TExES-provided study guide, the TEKS and a study manual I bought online from Teaching Solutions (which was pretty much worthless).

Testing Strategy

The test was hard. I walked in very confident and sure of myself, but I walked out wondering whether I had even passed. I did -- 274. I advise studying the TEKS a lot.

Strategy 8

Submitted by Texas Teachers

Study Strategy

Used the study guide from TEXES website and plus a few others. Focused more on test-taking strategies and plus examples of how questions are worded.

Testing Strategy

It was easier. Also shorter had like 90 multiple choice questions. Took approximately one hour. Read the questions slowly, mark key "trip up" words before you read the choices. There are alot of key words like is, is not, most, least, best, and more.

Strategy 9

Submitted by Texas Teachers

Study Strategy

I used the official test reviews and textbooks like "Reading in the Content area"

Testing Strategy

Take your time and read the questions carefully.

Strategy 10

Submitted by Texas Teachers

Study Strategy

I went over the material questions on the internet. I relied on my college course information.

Testing Strategy

It was easier than I expected. My advise, however, is to relax, read the question twice and be clear on what they're asking you.

Strategy 11

Submitted by Texas Teachers

Study Strategy

Preparing for the content exam, I used the practice test posted on the SBEC website for the particular subject matter. Make sure to link the objectives to various scenarios and you will be fine!!

Testing Strategy

The test was little easier than I expected. Make sure you look over everything in the practice test and apply it to various situations.

Strategy 12

Submitted by Texas Teachers

Study Strategy

- Official Practice Test - Downloaded (Very effective)

Testing Strategy

I found the test to just be a longer version of the test. I would study more and when studying, give the answer the administrator would want, not necessarily what you would do.

Strategy 13

Submitted by Texas Teachers

Study Strategy

I used the free study guides provided by the state on the TExES website just to go over the questions and test myself (they give a free practice test). Honestly, I didn't study very long for it. For the essay portion, research how to analyze literature and poetry. I used my college classes as references. Use terminology like plot scheme, character development, and theme.

Testing Strategy

It was both, hard and easy. During the test, I was nervous because I had never encountered educational terminology before, but if you just relax and think logically and with common sense about questions you're not sure of, you'll find that it's a lot easier than you think. If it makes you feel better, research terminology and theories about educational strategies to help you out. My only hint - just relax!

Strategy 14

Submitted by Texas Teachers

Study Strategy

I used the study guide provided by the State. It helped me tremendously to understand the content that would be presented on the exam. I also researched any concepts presented in the study material that I was unfamiliar with.

Testing Strategy

During the time I was preparing for the test, I had many distractions (work, death of a loved one, etc.), so I was not as prepared as I would have liked to be. My advice is to start studying as soon as you make up your mind to take the test. The test would have been much easier if I'd been more prepared.

Strategy 15

Submitted by Texas Teachers

Study Strategy

I used the free materials online that were provided. I relied mainly on the state provided manual for the test.

Testing Strategy

The test was harder than I expected. It did not feel like the English reading or writing were a major part of the test, but relied heavily on classroom management and child assessment of the students. I was expecting more reading and writing questions on the test.

Strategy 16

Submitted by Texas Teachers

Study Strategy

I only studied the practice test. In my opinion that's all you need. I broke down all of the questions and answers from the practice test and that really prepared me.

Testing Strategy

The test was harder than I expected, you have to make sure you take your time and read every word carefully. My advise is to get some good sleep the night before and go in with the mindset that your going to pass.

Strategy 17

Submitted by Texas Teachers

Study Strategy

Pass the Texes study guide from Ed Publishing and the SBEC study guide that was printed out. Both helped tremendously. They actually over prepare but thats ok. I also looked at the online study community for a lot of help. Following what the SBEC, Pass the Texes and the online study community, I would not have done anything differently.

Testing Strategy

Let me just start by saying I'm not a good standard test taker. I tend to get flustered with a lot of questions. Most parts were ridiculously easy and maybe like 10 questions were hard. But those hard questions were HARD. Don't focus on those but keep moving forward. You have to analyze the questions and every answer can be found if you know the key words that Pass the Texes taught. I used both the 4-8 study guide and the 8-12 study guide. Study ways to teach not always the defintions, but definitions do come up. If you're near a university, ask them if they have whats called a qualifier exam for the Texes. I took mine at UH and it was almost an exact copy of the exam. What I did was divide the real exam into 3 sections of 30 questions and spent an hour doing and reviewing. It really gave me focus and didn't cause me to get overwhelmed. the whole thing took about 3 1/2 hours but I made sure I thought every question out. Give your mind a break between sections. Staring at a computer screen for 3 hours can brutal. I passed with a 263.

Strategy 18

Submitted by Texas Teachers

Study Strategy

If I had it to do all over again, I would focus more on the reading portion rather than the writing portion. That said, I used the free materials from the TEXES website. Another study guide may have been better.

Testing Strategy

Though I passed, I found it more difficult than I expected. My minor was English in college, but I graduated 10 years ago. Know your terms, get a good night's sleep, and take your time.

Strategy 19

Submitted by Texas Teachers

Study Strategy

It is a challenging test. You need knowledge of how to teach. Most questions were over the best activity a teacher should use in the classroom. Know about emergent readers, ELL learners, graphic organizers, literary terms, read all the TEKS and take practice tests. Study morphemes and graphemes. Know fable and hiaku poems, and several questions over using media and oral language activities in the classroom. I passed with a 272 - you can do it!!!! It took 3 days to get my scores!!!!!

Testing Strategy

In the middle - some easy questions and a few that I had no idea!

Strategy 20

Submitted by Texas Teachers

Study Strategy

I used the free study guide given. I mainly concentrated on the sample questions going I went over them alot. I also used the sample questions for the 8-12 as well.Go over the notes on engaging lessons and study grammar rules for sentence construction.

Testing Strategy

It was harder than I thought. I was so happy I passed better than I thought.One should study some rules about sentence structures and punctuations.

Strategy 21

Submitted by Texas Teachers

Study Strategy

I used the study material/manual downloaded from the SBEC website. I kept reviewing the practice tests and I kept track of questions I missed. Usually, I missed questions because I did not read closely enough. I also purchased a study manual that had a lot of education definitions that were helpful. It was from the TExES Study Sessions website.

Testing Strategy

I found the test to be very similar to the SBEC practice tests. I would suggest that test takers read both the question and the answer choices through completely, and then try to eliminate the two or three answers you know are incorrect. Take your time and don't over-stress! Think about the competency the question addresses. It will help you find key words and determine the correct answer.

Strategy 22

Submitted by Texas Teachers

Study Strategy

I would tell someone to use the preparation manuals on ETS's website because they show you how the test is structured.

Testing Strategy

It was easier because as long as you know the information, you will not struggle.

Strategy 23

Submitted by Texas Teachers

Study Strategy

I printed examples from the Texas Teachers website. Don't "over" study - too stressful!

Testing Strategy

It was harder than I expected. Relax and think through each question. Do one question at a time.

Strategy 24

Submitted by Texas Teachers

Study Strategy

I used the state practice guide and several teacher resources. For example, Plans for Struggling Readers, Elements of Literature - 6-8, and Grammar and Composition - Houghton.

Testing Strategy

The test was easier than I expected but I spent many hours reviewing material. Note: focus on student-centered teacher-guided answers.

Strategy 25

Submitted by Texas Teachers

Study Strategy

I used the print outs I made from the state. I really focused on knowing the main competencies. The practice test is a good indicator of what will be on the test.

Testing Strategy

It was exactly what I expected, moderately hard. I would tell the person to relax the night before, don't try to cram information. You either know the information or you don't.

Strategy 26

Submitted by Texas Teachers

Study Strategy

Check out this book at your library. It raised my score by 25 points. Informed Reading Teacher: Research-Based Practice, The by Bill Harp and Jo Ann Brewer (Apr 16, 2004)

Testing Strategy

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Strategy 27

Submitted by Texas Teachers

Study Strategy

I used the Mometrix Media TExES (117) study guide. It was very useful and worth the money. I studied for four days have have been out of school since 1997. Obviously I needed more than just a review! I took the exam in the guide and went over each answer I got right and wrong. I used the guide in depth and took the practice exam several times. The flash cards they offer are useless and overwhelming. I wouldn't recommend purchasing them. I also did the free practice exams that are available online.

Testing Strategy

The text was very, very difficult. It is useless to study specific authors or literary time periods. The test is all situational. It is important to study types and levels of learning. What is fluency, oral and written communication, literacy, synonyms, etc. I finished the exam in 2.5 hrs but took the rest of the time to go over it again. This helped tremendously! I recommend going over the exam a second time.

Strategy 28

Submitted by Texas Teachers

Study Strategy

I used the official practice test on the SBEC website, XAM study book, and random sample questions online.

Testing Strategy

It was at the same difficulty level as the official practice test on the SBEC website. I took the practice test in the XAM book as well. Take practice tests multiple times to get used to the format. The test is almost entirely scenario based. Know teacher jargon.

Strategy 29

Submitted by Texas Teachers

Study Strategy

I used the Pass the Texes book by Ed Publishing and Consulting. The book was extremely helpful. That book is the only book you need to study, along with the ELAR 4-8 preparation manual on www.texes.ets.org. Also, know your competencies and vocabulary.

Testing Strategy

The test wasn't bad at all. As long as you study and use the Pass the Texes book and the preparation manual, then you should do just fine.

Strategy 30

Submitted by Texas Teachers

Study Strategy

Don't think that you need to study ONLY 4-8 Reading and Writing skills and practices for this test! I went in confident about my 4-8 level knowledge and left angry at myself for not reviewing beginning literacy skills as well. There were quite a few scenarios that dealt with students in the stages of reading and writing that I had to dig really deep into my longterm memory to answer, because I hadn't studied those stages since college. Also, don't do what I did and use other study guides that are not specifically geared to this test--it will be a waist of your time. The online TEXES study guide is truly a shorter version of what the actually test will be like.Also, study the TEKS--they will really help you with answering scenario questions about the purpose of given instructional methods.

Testing Strategy

The computer test was not as stressful as I thought it would be. I thought I would struggle with not being able to write notes and highlight important words in the question. However,it was not bad at all. The font was large and only one question came up per screen, and you can place a check mark next to questions you want to go back to review. You can go back and check and change your answers at any time during the test before submitting.

Strategy 31

Submitted by Texas Teachers

Study Strategy

I used the computer study guide for the TExES test. 117 English Language Arts and Reading from certifyteacher.com. I also used the free online study material from the SBEC.

Testing Strategy

Since I had done some studying, it was about as hard as I expected it to be. I did better than I expected when I finally recieved my scores. I would advise anyone to study using the materials I used and to be accustomed to the test format. Just think each question through before you answer.

Strategy 32

Submitted by Texas Teachers

Study Strategy

I used the XAM book, various online sources, and the state info.

Testing Strategy

I studied for everything and barely passed. The only advice I can give is not to buy any additional material. The state info was the closest material to the actual test.

Strategy 33

Submitted by Texas Teachers

Study Strategy

I used a full month to study using the manual on the state website and the practice exam. The practice test was a good indication of what the real test was like. I went through the study manual and made flashcards for terminology. I looked up stages of reading and phonics development online. The test focuses more on teaching than terms, but you have to know the terms to understand what the question is asking from you. I took the practice test about three times over the month to get a feel for how the questions are worded.

Testing Strategy

The test was HARD. I finished in about 1.5 hr and left thinking I failed it. I know with multiple choice questions to go with my gut and not go back and change answers. There is a nifty option on the computer test that lets you mark questions you want to come back to later. I scored 276/300. The best way to prepare for this test is to study the manual on the state website and think like a teacher. It's not about how well you know content, it's how to teach it.

Strategy 34

Submitted by Texas Teachers

Study Strategy

I used an online study guide I downloaded from teachingsolutions.com (or org). It was $57 and worth it! I made flash cards of vocabulary given and studied the strategies. I would have focused more on reading comprehension and less on teaching students how to read.

Testing Strategy

It was easier than I expected. I would tell anyone studying for this exam to not expect there to be any obvious wrong answers to stand out. All answers seem reasonable and the major trick is to figure out which answer best meets the qualifications of the question. If you can figure out what the question is asking for, you can get it right.

Strategy 35

Submitted by Texas Teachers

Study Strategy

I used the XAM Generalist 4-8 and the online prep manual from ets. The test format is exactly like the online test.

Testing Strategy

The test was difficult. It had a few questions about content, but the majority is on teaching strategies. I walked out thinking that I failed, but ended up passing. Study teaching strategies and you should be fine.

Strategy 36

Submitted by Texas Teachers

Study Strategy

I used the practice test and a text book (Preparing for the Texas PK-4 Teacher Certification). I got this text book from a relative who was a education major in college. The text book helped me with the terms. I study the practice at 5 question per day. I broke each question down to be able to understand why it was that answer.

Testing Strategy

The test was like 95 questions. It took me 4 hours to complete the test. The test was a longer version of the practice test. Early Childhood questions will be on the test. Make sure you take a break in between to help relax your brain. One of the hints for me was "guide". I looked for answers where the teacher had full interaction with the students while guiding them on how to obtain the solution.

Strategy 37

Submitted by Texas Teachers

Study Strategy

I used the on-line study guide, kaplan texes ppr, and i looked up information pertaining to the competencies, I found all of these materials helpful in hlping me think th way the test wants you to think. As many have said, this test focuses mainly on how to teach, rather than English concepts, however the way the questions are worded you will need to know your English terms or you will be lost. Know Phonemes, graphemes,pneumonics, etc.

Testing Strategy

This test was much harder than I expected, and I am a straight A student who has always exceled in English. Again I stress, know how teach, this is very important. Also pay attention to the question and learn how to break it down. If the question asks you to choose a lesson that addresses two areas make sure that your answer addresses both areas. Also, remember the teacher is there to teach, immediately eliminate answers that focus on others teaching i.e. the student.Definitely get prep manual of the texes site, and definitely study pedagogy, you will need it. I also found there to be ESL questions, so study that as well. Good Luck!

Strategy 38

Submitted by Texas Teachers

Study Strategy

SBEC test prep manual and the Sharon Wynne XAM book. I also used the Cliff's Generalist EC-4. The XAM book is not worth it and it is overkill. The Cliff's was great because it broke down the fundamentals of learning how to read. (Phonemes, graphemes, etc.) The SBEC prep was, by far, the best indicator of the test. Phonemic awareness and how to assess progress

Testing Strategy

The test was somewhat challenging but if you use the SBEC quiz as a guide you will be fine. Phonemic awareness, methods on how to get students to accomplish a certain task and how to assess progress are the main things you want to know. Seriously, if you can get 36/37 on the practice test on the SBEC/TEA site then you will be fine. USE IT.

Strategy 39

Submitted by Texas Teachers

Study Strategy

I used the practice test from SBEC- I thought this was very representative of the types of questions on the real test, I also used XAM online book - very thorough, there is some fluff material in the book, but overall very good with terms, etc, it was also good just for general teaching knowledge...Last, I used Pass the TExES, I thought this was a very weak book - so much emphasis on being able to identify the compet. while taking the test - you will waste GOBS of time if while taking the test you actually try to figure out each competency before answering - just answer the question asked! 2 weeks at about 1-2 hours a day should be sufficient for this. Know about: phonemic/phonological awareness, graphemes, morphemes, phonemes, syntax, semantics, stages of reading and spelling devel., context clues, structural analysis, word ident. strategies One more thing, know about the TEKS, but I wouldn't study specifics, at least not till you are hired

Testing Strategy

test was not bad, I had five hours, finished in about 2, got a 269, would recommend computer test

Strategy 40

Submitted by Texas Teachers

Study Strategy

I started studying for the exam a month before taking the test. I used the certifyteacher.com website and downloaded the online exam. The exams were actual previous TExES exams used in the past. The flash card application was very useful to study terms I was unfamiliar with. If I made a wrong answer on the practice exams the program would explain the steps to the right answer. It also monitored my progress so I knew how much I was improving. I also used the TExES preparation manual on the ETS website.

Testing Strategy

The exam was very easy and I was able to relate the new questions to everything I studied from the Certify Teacher program.

Strategy 41

Submitted by Texas Teachers

Study Strategy

I tallied up what most others used for study materials and the consensus is overwhelming-use the free (official) study guide. There were also a few recommendations for Quizlet. I'd never used it prior, but decided to give it a quick look. I did not, however, upload anything for myself. I simply searched for the test and used a couple vocab lists that someone else made. A majority of my time was spent combing over the study guide and going through the practice test. Like others said here, know concepts rather than definitions. I would say understand the competencies, but I don't see the necessity in memorizing them.

Testing Strategy

I was pretty nervous going into this test. Many of the answers seemed legit and I really had to dig pretty deep into the wording. Leaving the test center, I was not confident at all. I passed with a 256, so my worries were unfounded in the end.

Strategy 42

Submitted by Texas Teachers

Study Strategy

I did not purchase any study materials for this exam. I used the study preparation manual directly from the state website www.texes.ets.org and flash cards from Quizlet.com. Before taking this test I took the Generalist EC-6 exam and failed. I had used a study guide that I purchased and spent many hours for a month studying. For this exam 117 I only used the study material directly from the state. It was very to the point for each Competency that I needed to know. Use the resource from the state since that is the exact material that will be on the test.

Testing Strategy

This exam was easier than I expected. (I failed the Generalist exam 191 just a few weeks prior.) The test was exactly 100 questions. I took a break after the first 25 questions and left the room. The breaks I took after that I just looked down for a few minutes so I wouldn't feel strained staring at the computer for so long. As long as you know what each Competency is you will be able to identify the best answer because you will know what you are looking for. After reading each question I was able to identify what competency it was (it will not tell you what competency it is) by decoding words from the question. I used the process of elimination to get rid of some answers and then took my time with the other two answers to make sure I chose what was best. Every single question was scenario based given the grade and type of student. Before taking the test I read a lot of views saying the test was harder than expected so I was nervous but after the first 25 questions I thought "wow, this is not so bad". I finished the test in 3 1/2 hrs and then I went back to review it only changing maybe 3 answers. I took the test on a Friday morning and I received my results on the following Tuesday morning with a passing score of 256.

Strategy 43

Submitted by Texas Teachers

Study Strategy

I visited this website to see what others before me thought about the test and everyone was on point! HOWEVER, I must say that being in the classroom six years and understanding techniques, strategies, and language was a plus. I wouldn't change any study habits that I implored during my studying for Test # 117.

Testing Strategy

The test was actually easy! I worked 35 straight questions and thought to myself, "Is the whole test this easy?" I would recommend Quizlet and the ETS practice tests.

Strategy 44

Submitted by Texas Teachers

Study Strategy

I actually studied 30 days prior to taking this challenging exam. I used 240 tutoring, but in hind-sight, the practice test on the state web cite is spot on, and will be your most reliable resource, literally. Don't waste your money. Do not pay for any other resources. I uploaded the vocab from the practice test to quizlet.com. I also turned the teacher competencies into fill-in-the blank Q&A on quizlet.com. Quizlet is free and the test you create can be uploaded to your mobile (smart- phone) like a game.

Testing Strategy

The info and advice I got from this forum got me through this test. Thank you to all the contributors! Once you pass the test like I did, pay it forward. Make sure your name appears exactly as written on your ID. I needed to submit my birth certificate to make a change of one off letter. YOU MUST KNOW THE Teacher COMPETENCIES; not word for word, but the reasons why you are applying a teaching strategy and its goal (VERY IMPORTANT). Almost all of the questions were scenario based! Make sure you, I repeat, MAKE SURE you zero in on the answer selections that involve direct teacher contact, guidance, and supervision. Study haiku, study the reading levels (instructional, frustration, and independent), study emergent stages of development, strategies to improve reading comprehension, and early fluent readers. I took the test on computer and finished 90 questions in 4 1/2 hours. for the sake of time I left blank questions that I struggled with and saved time to go back and reevaluate them. Trust God to help you, and He will! My results took three days to arrive. I passed on the first try Thank God!

Strategy 45

Submitted by Texas Teachers

Study Strategy

Used the study guide and practice questions from the TExES webside. Read over competencies, higlighting key words. Then wrote words and definitions/explanations for those key words in a notebook. After, I went through practice questions and read rationales. I visited this site and read about Quizlet.com and signed up for free account. Ended up making a set for each competency using all notes. Love that website because you can make flash cards or printout study sheets once you have a set. My favorite part was that I could just click to use another user's definition. That saved so much typing! I ended up printing notesheets and used those to review. I also used an ap to monitor how many hours I studied. I didnt clock all of my time but I believe it was 6 or so hours collectively. I am currently a 2nd grade teacher...some of the material was new to me.

Testing Strategy

I left thinking I did not pass. The test was more difficult than expexted. It took me 4 hours of carefully analyzing every answer. I knew it would involve scenarios but so many questions had answers that could all be correct. Very important to remember to answer soley based on the information they give you. I was nervous for no reason because I passed!!!

Strategy 46

Submitted by Texas Teachers

Study Strategy

I passed this test on my first try! I used the free state manual to study. I studied for a week an average of 3-4 hours a day. If you would prefer studying for a longer period of time: 2 weeks for example, I'd say that 2 hours a day would be good. When studying the manual make sure and read each competency and all its details. Get a VERY good understanding of each single competency before you take your test. Understanding the competency is how you'll choose the BEST answer.

Testing Strategy

I used the entire 5 hours to take the test. I checked my answers twice. When re-reading the questions I changed a few answers once I realized what the questions were REALLY asking. Pay attention to what they're asking! Use process of elimination; that helped me tremendously! Good luck, you CAN do this!

Strategy 47

Submitted by Texas Teachers

Study Strategy

I used the TeXes Study Guide, TEA pre-tests, this forum, and a vocab list from quizzlet.com. While the study guide is helpful to learn definitions and stages, the biggest factor for me was studying the answers and the reasons why on the 2 pre-tests. What makes this test challenging isn't so much the content (memorize the right definitions and you're set), it's that you have to think differently. You have to read a situation, apply 2-3 different concepts (sometimes scaffolding) and be able to think like a teacher to select the answer that would best serve the student or class described. My first practice test I missed several nuances in the questions that gave clues to the answers.

Testing Strategy

Study the answer guides to train your brain to think the right way. Know the difference between phonemic and phonological awareness, as well as phonemes, graphemes,and morphemes. Make sure to study various stages, such as the stages of literacy, spelling, writing, oral language, etc. There were 3 questions on the emergent literacy stage alone. Know structured analysis and various word identification skills. Once you learn how to think, it's really not bad. It took me 2 hours and that includes going back and reviewing every questions I wasn't 100% about. Good luck!

Strategy 48

Submitted by Texas Teachers

Study Strategy

Took my test yesterday and found out just now that I passed with a score of 267. I liked studying one Domain at a time. Since I teach writing part time, I knew that section would be easier, so I didn't spend much time studying that section. My advice to you is to know pre-phonemic, phonemic, and other aspects of the emergent learner.

Testing Strategy

I took my time taking the test and finished 55 questions within two hours, and then, I took a break. Many of the last 35 questions seemed to be longer question prompts, so I answered all of the short easier ones first. I went back and answered the last 10 or so longer ones. I had time left, so I checked my answers.

Strategy 49

Submitted by Texas Teachers

Study Strategy

First let me say I was certified in Arizona 7-12 ELAR in 2000, there we took a basic skills, professional, and subject test. When I moved to Texas in 2003 I passed the professional and ELAR 8-12 on the first try, but had been teaching at the time. I was very nervous about this test because of the emphasis on early literacy (something I had never used)so all of my study focus was that section of the exam. My study materials included: ets practice questions, reading the textbook: The Informed Reading Teacher, and using the certify teacher study program at (certifyteacher.com).As others have said the test was very much like the ets practice test. Book Reference: Harp, B. & Brewer, J. (2005). The informed reading teacher : research-based practice. Upper Saddle River, N.J: Pearson/Merrill/Prentice Hall.

Testing Strategy

The test itself was as expected and I thought it was easier than the ELAR 8-12 because it was all teaching scenarios and not an "English Exam." My advice is to study early literacy vocabulary and writing vocabulary so that you know what the questions are asking... the test is very close to the ets practice questions, some of the questions were nearly identical, and if you are still feeling iffy after that and need more questions certifyteacher.com is the way to go! I was able to pass with a 271 on the first try with 1 week of studying and having spent the last 9 years out of the classroom I know you guys can too!

Strategy 50

Submitted by Texas Teachers

Study Strategy

I had originally scheduled this test a week later than I did but a weekend date opened and I spent 4-5 hours over 3 evenings studying. I used the certifyteacher.com software and the official prep manual.

Testing Strategy

I was not comfortable in my study time due to the three days from registering to taking the test. I spent 4-5 total hours studying for it and found the test pretty difficult. It was almost as hard in my opinion as the ESL. I could usually get the answers down to two choices but then it as extremely difficult. I finished the test in a little under two hours and passed with a 243. I would definitely suggest the certifyteacher software and also encourage a longer study time. I believe I would have achieved a higher score with more study time but I passed.

Strategy 51

Submitted by Texas Teachers

Study Strategy

First, I want to thank everyone that post comments on this website. Your information really helped me narrow down study material for the Texes 117. Secondly, I passed my test on the first attempt! I say this with humility and excitement because without some of the information on this website I would have studied everything without focusing on key elements. Now, I would like to share with you some of my thoughts on the test. I did the practice test from the ETS website as a pre-test and copied down any word used in the scenarios and answer choices that were unfamiliar to me. Study and know the vocabulary used on the test. I found a comprehensive list on quizlet.com but I always make sure the vocabulary words have the same meaning as to what is used on the test. We all know some words have multiple meanings. Many times we may not choose an answer from the choices because we do not know what the term means. This was very helpful. Yes, you end up with a list of words but every word on that practice test will be seen again on the actual test just in a different format and question. Most importantly know what each COMPETENCY for Texes 117 is focused on and key words listed under each concept. I made flashcards to learn the competency and key focal points listed under each. This was a huge success for me passing the test. Again, when reviewing the competencies highlight any words listed under each that you are not familiar with and add those to your vocabulary list. Some of the websites I used for practice were the Ets site, ETS test preparation manual, www.texesexamplepracticetests.com, www.testprepreview.com and tea website. I studied and practiced for this test in sections over a 2 month period. I did push my initial test date back when I felt I was not fully ready to take the test; so do not be shy about delaying your test for a week or two. Your ETS online account will allow you to edit your test dates which also aided in the success of me passing my test. I would rather pay less to postpone a test then the entire fee for not passing it. These are tips from an outstate teacher which I am now certified in Texas. Good Luck and using these study tips will assist you in your success of passing these state test.

Testing Strategy

Prior to taking the test on the computer, go to the ETS website and review the computer based test video. It helped me remember all the key tabs and functions on the computer test before I arrived at the testing center. This way you do not have to waste valuable time clicking on the help button to review what a button means or not using a function because you did not know it was available to you.

Strategy 52

Submitted by Texas Teachers

Study Strategy

I used the XAM book that I checked out from the Harris County Library. It was a little dated, but still gave me information to help me choose the right answers. Pay close attention to the stages of reading development. I did not pass the practice test from the book, but did well on the exam. I studied for a total of about 12 hours in a period of 4 weeks and I majored in business, so I had basic knowledge before taking the test.

Testing Strategy

The test was much easier than I had expected. It wasn't about knowing definitions and theories as much as it was about understanding how to assist students in their particular stages of reading development. The testing center I went to was very cold, I would recommend bringing extra layers of clothing and staying completely focused on testing during the check-in process.

Strategy 53

Submitted by Texas Teachers

Study Strategy

I was told that this test you can't really study for, which is true, to an extent. I brushed up on basic grammar (which seemed to show up more on the practice tests than the actual test). I used the practice exam on the ETS website for ELA 117, as well as the Core Subjects practice test. I broke down each question and looked up anything I didn't understand. I also used the Xam book by Sharon Wynne. It was helpful, but I think the ETS information was most helpful.

Testing Strategy

Read the questions and be sure what they are asking. This should help you eliminate at least one of the answer choices. I only took a 5 minute break to use the bathroom and get a drink of water; they don't let you have water in the room. I took the exam Wednesday morning and received my results Friday afternoon. I passed the test the first time with a 266/300. This exam does not have an essay portion. Good luck!

Strategy 54

Submitted by Texas Teachers

Study Strategy

I used the ETS preparation manual and the program from CertifyTeacher, both were very helpful. I also made study cards on Quizlet of important terms to study. I reviewed materials related to early language development, like Birsh's Multisensory Teaching of Basic Language Skills, which helped me understand some of the early reading/oral language concepts better. I also bought the TExES Secrets Study Guide from Mometrix, but I found it to be mostly a waste of money. It didn't really focus on the competencies very much. My main advice would be to use the competencies listed as your study guide and seek out any of the concepts you don't know. I passed with a high score doing that.

Testing Strategy

It's very much based off of teacher scenarios you might encounter, not so much a test of your knowledge of concepts. Make sure to understand how you can apply the concepts, not just memorize them.

Strategy 55

Submitted by Texas Teachers

Study Strategy

I started studying about two weeks prior to the test. I used an XAMonline review book, as well as Quizlet and 240Tutoring. I also searched on Google for test practice questions and used those. I read through the entire content of the XAMonline book and took the practice test. I then went through and looked at all the questions I missed and essentially did corrections. I then made sure to know the basic terminology backwards and forwards (I practiced with a Quizlet I found after searching TExES 117). I went through many rounds of practice questions on 240Tutoring and made sure to read the review materials in the areas I was week in.

Testing Strategy

The biggest thing that helped me when taking the test was to try and pick apart the question to figure out what it was ultimately asking. This test doesn't have extraneous information in the question, so you need to think about how to best respond to each part of what it is asking. If you aren't sure what one of the answers is, use process of elimination for the answer choices that you do know what they are. It is important to know key terms so you can use that basic knowledge as the basis of your critical thinking process. I passed with a 284.

Strategy 56

Submitted by Texas Teachers

Study Strategy

I took two weeks to prepare to take this exam and I studied for 2-3 hours a day. I used two references to study: the preparation manual from the ETS website and a practice test from www.proprofs.com. Read each competency; I wouldn't say completely memorize it, but it does help to know each one. The TExES manual is the exact format of the test! Use it to your advantage! The explanations for the study questions are very helpful. I used those to dissect each question. Know why your answer is correct.

Testing Strategy

The test was 100 questions long and the time given is 5 hours. I used about 4 hours total to take the test and review it. Know what the question is asking you; it makes a difference in a right or wrong answer choice! Pay attention to what they say or ask of the teacher in the question. This test is not difficult. Take your time, take a break at the half point if needed, read each question more than once to have a good understanding of what's asked. Use process of elimination. I took my test on a Wednesday morning and got my results by Saturday afternoon. I passed on my first attempt with a 266.

Strategy 57

Submitted by Texas Teachers

Study Strategy

When I started studying for the test, I had no idea what I was about to experience. I read this message board which helped me identify which study materials to use and what worked the best. Originally, I was going to go through CertifyTeacher.com and get the online program for $55, but I didn't buy it in enough time before my test. I just used the materials on the Texas Education Certification website (ETS). All the competencies are listed and there's a practice tests with 40 questions. This is all that is needed. I wrote all the competencies down in a notebook and printed the practice test. When I first took the practice test, I did 20 questions and got around 7 wrong. I was so stressed from that because I knew if I didn't understand these questions I would fail. This test is about your critical-thinking skills. I found a couple more practice tests online, one test was on proprofs.com. That test was extremely helpful as well, and had 39 questions. Study and memorize each competency name and know basic information about each. When it comes to test day, you need to be able to read the question and know which competency the question is referring to.

Testing Strategy

It wasn't necessarily hard, but it was nerve-wracking. It took me about 3 hours to take the test out of a possible 5 hours. I didn't take a break at all. I thought I needed one originally but when I got past question 40, I just did the last 60 with no problems. The test is almost like the practice test found on the ETS website, with exception to asking about certain literary terms I wasn't familiar with such as onset rime. Know phonemes and the linguistics in the competencies. Try and memorize that information. I walked out not knowing how I did, but I received my test scores and passed with a 259 out of 300! There are so many horror stories associated with this test, but I passed on the first try. Good luck!

Strategy 58

Submitted by Texas Teachers

Study Strategy

I originally bought 240Tutoring to study for this test. I wanted to do everything I possibly could to pass. In May, I took the 7-12 English content exam and missed it by 5 points, but I did not study as much as I should have. After reviewing the 240Tutoring material, I felt confident I knew the content. To be completely certain, I purchased Certify Teacher program for English 4-8. I am so glad I did, and also disappointed I wasted money on 240Tutoring. Certify Teacher is more expensive, but you have the option to break down the competencies and study them individually; that is what worked for me. By focusing on one at a time, I really grasped each concept. I studied for a solid 3 weeks before the test. The first week I studied about an hour a day. The last two I studied 3-4 hours a day leading up the the exam. I took my exam this past Saturday and passed with a 265!

Testing Strategy

The test was about as hard as I expected, not too hard nor too easy. While taking the test, I would say definitely get a good night worth of sleep. All the reading you do during the exam strains your eyes, so if you're already tired it will be difficult. You are given 4 hours to take the exam. My strategy was completing all 100 questions first and making the ones I was uncertain of for review to go back to. Once I had finished the 100 questions, I went on a bathroom break; it helped to step away from the computer. Upon returning, I was ready to go and review every single question. I ended up changing about 10 answers due to carelessness. Domain II is what you're tested the most on. Certify Teacher does a good job of not only breaking down the competencies to be quizzed on individually, but you can also break down the domains. I would definitely recommend it to anyone! Good luck everyone!

Strategy 59

Submitted by Texas Teachers

Study Strategy

I used the practice test in the prep manual as well as the ELAR section of the Core Subjects 4-8 test. I also used a textbook called "Teaching Reading Strategies". This helped tremendously! I also looked at a bilingual TExES study guide book to learn more about ELL's. In addition, I purchased the Certify Teacher study guide. It helped a little, but not much; the explanations were terrible.

Testing Strategy

You have plenty of time, pace yourself. It is not so bad, if you study the right material. Focus on how to teach and assess ELL's. Know a lot about phonemic awareness, how to teach reading comprehension and writings at all stages, and how to best assess during these stages. Eat something. Get some rest and do your best! I was so scared I didn't pass, but I did!

Strategy 60

Submitted by Texas Teachers

Study Strategy

I used 240tutoring and Certify Teacher. 240tutoring has easily digestible material and Certify Teacher gives you a more thorough explanation and mirrors the format of the test almost exactly. I studied for two weeks, working through one competency a day and then getting really comfortable with the exam structure.

Testing Strategy

It was easier than I expected, and I felt pretty well prepared. I chose to stop studying the night before and made sure to enter the exam as relaxed as possible. I took just over two hours to take the exam, and I left feeling confident but unsure. The most important thing is being able to tease out what the question is most literally asking. There are usually two good answers, and you have to apply your knowledge of the competencies to choose the best answer. Like I said, I was nervous about my exam results, but in the end, I passed with a 281 out of 300 on my first attempt!

Strategy 61

Submitted by Texas Teachers

Study Strategy

I had about two weeks to study, and this forum was a HUGE help. As others posted, I focused on the preparation manual and practice test from the TEA website. I also reviewed the competencies thoroughly and took a couple other practice tests. I also studied flash cards on Quizlet which were very helpful. I moved to TX from AL, and was not familiar with any of the material. I studied an average of two hours a day.

Testing Strategy

I felt pretty confident going into the test. Initially I did not do well on the practice tests, but after reviewing weak areas and re-taking the practice test I did well. All of the questions were scenario-based, or asking which competency certain assignments were addressing. Many of the questions have more than one fitting answer, but take your time, re-read the question, and look for key-words to see what it's really asking. The test took me almost 3 hours, and this includes checking my answers. I left having 5 questions I was really uncertain about and 5 more I felt 50/50 about. I passed with a 261 on my first attempt.

Strategy 62

Submitted by Texas Teachers

Study Strategy

I used the state practice exam and the "Pass the TExES" book that I downloaded online. I also used the Quizlet site for the pre-uploaded terms. I took a random practice test that I found on Google, after typing in "TExES 117 practice exam." Like many have said here, take the practice test from the state. It is what resembles the actual test the most. However, be prepared for different questions. If I could have studied differently, I think I would have focused more on the teacher instruction than learning the actual definitions of terms. I did not do well on the practice tests until I went back and read each question thoroughly. I actually studied the practice tests and why the answers were the best choice. I probably would still buy the online book, just for back up. I can't stress enough, focus on teacher instruction and the competencies. I memorized them; you probably don't need to, but it will help you to identify the direction of the questions on the test.

Testing Strategy

The test was very difficult. I studied for about a month and a half. I was extremely nervous. It took me about 3 hours to take the test; I read very carefully. The last 40 questions were tedious, because I was getting antsy to finish. I would suggest closing your eyes for a little bit when you can't focus. The test itself was about 90% situational questions. The rest were actual knowledge based. Know the different visual aids that can be used (KWL, Venn diagram, story map, etc). Know about emergent readers, ELL, media types, and persuasive essays in terms of instruction. I took a break after I had finished answering and marking the answers I was going to look at again. I came back and looked at each answer. I changed about 10 answers. When I left, I did not feel confident. I took the test on Saturday evening and got the scores early Tuesday morning. I got a 253! If I did it, you can!

Strategy 63

Submitted by Texas Teachers

Study Strategy

I used the state preparation manual and CertifyTeacher.com. I studied for about 6 weeks. What worked best was me going through each competency and reading it thoroughly to know exactly what the content is going to be for the exam. After that, I went through and defined key words throughout those competencies. I would then study the notes and go through the study questions in the manual to see how questions are going to be asked and formatted. I also read the description for why the answer was right or wrong and why the other answers were correct or not correct. This was extremely helpful, because I was able to see more detailed information about the questions and answer choices! I did the same exact thing on CertifyTeacher, except the website gave more variety quizzes, a practice exam, and flash cards. The website study material is very similar to the test!

Testing Strategy

The test format was easy to break down, but the content was not as easy. I would also study more English content words, so that I can have a better chance of process of elimination! I did pass the test, even though I left feeling unsure. BE positive and study hard; you will get through!

Strategy 64

Submitted by Texas Teachers

Study Strategy

I used the study guide from the state website and the practice tests at CertifyTeacher.com. I took the practice quizzes and tests multiple times and read over the rationales each time. I was pretty nervous and studied for about a month before the test, racking up I would say about 25 hours total study time. I studied the domains and competencies but did not memorize anything. I didn't purchase any additional study materials.

Testing Strategy

The test was about as tough as I thought it would be, perhaps a bit harder. I thought it would be all situational, but there were some questions asking definitions of terms. I marked 26 questions for review that I was unsure of and went back to those, really analyzing the questions before answering. I then went back over the entire test again. I finished in 4 hours, so I really took my time. I got my score today and I passed with a 276.

Strategy 65

Submitted by Texas Teachers

Study Strategy

I took test 117. I used the English area of the 4-8 generalist book and the 117 preparation manual from the TExES website. I learned the competencies(001-O.L.) and I just read over the explanation of the each to familiarize myself with the content. I also made flash cards on quizlet for the comp. and used already made to study vocab. Knowing the definitions of terms is very important for this exam.

Testing Strategy

I used 4 1/2 out of my five hours to test. The test was not easy at all but I prayed to God and studied. I passed on the first time testing.

Strategy 66

Submitted by Texas Teachers

Study Strategy

For this test I did what majority of everyone else is saying. I used the free study guide. The study guide did a great job of giving me an idea of how the questions would be structured. I also went on quizlet just to see what others posted as far as terminology was concerned. The majority of my study time was spent on the free study guide and the rationales listed for each question.

Testing Strategy

I wouldn't say the test was hard, but it will require you to take your time and think. In my opinion the test seemed long and you can become fatigued. When I answered 60 questions I decided to take a break just to clear my mind and to refocus, which I think helped. After I finished the test I went back over it and actually changed about 8-10 questions that I felt I misread. My advice is to take a couple of breaks, go back over your answers at the end with a clear mind, and don't panic over a question you may not know because one single question will not cost you the test. I passed the test and I'm sure you will too! Good luck!

Strategy 67

Submitted by Texas Teachers

Study Strategy

I only studied for 3 to 4 days prior to the exam. I took the practice tests on the proprofs.com website and then went over the preparation manual from TEA. I took those exams twice. The first time, I failed the one on the proprofs website and the other one I missed 12 questions out of 40, so I did ok. Finally, I retook the same practice tests and passed them both. I wrote down the competencies that I struggled with and went over and re-read those competencies. I realized they were going to make or break me when it came down to the real exam. The worst thing about it for me was not making enough time to study. I would recommend studying at least 2 weeks in advance if you really want to pass.

Testing Strategy

The exam was almost exactly how the practice test from the preparation manual. You might want to study metacognitive strategies, morphemes, graphemes, inquiry and study skills questions, and re-read the competencies so they can stick. On the day of the test, try reducing the light on the computer screen because you will be looking at the same screen for a long time. It took me 3 hours and 20 minutes and I reviewed the questions I had marked. I came out of the exam confused about the questions, but felt a bit confident. I received my scores today and passed with a 258!

Strategy 68

Submitted by Texas Teachers

Study Strategy

I spent two weeks studying for the test. My primary resource was the XAMOnline book I purchased at Barnes and Noble (around $70 and completely worth it). I read every single page and continually reviewed the areas that I knew I had a more difficult time memorizing and recalling. The first week I spent reading the entire text, the second week I studied about 4 hours each day. I completed the sample test in the back and was just shy of passing, but it was still a useful tool and got me more familiar with the testing language. I use the free test on the TEA website the night before the test, which was the most accurate representation of what the real exam was like. I also purchased and used 240 tutoring and Certify Teacher, but didn't find those resources nearly as useful as the XAMOnline book.

Testing Strategy

I completed all 100 questions in the first two hours, took a mental break, and spent another hour and a half reviewing all of the questions that I marked for "review". I marked anything that I felt I was less than 100% sure of; this meant 50/100 after my first run through. Going through the 50 a second time allowed me to feel more confident in my performance, but I still felt borderline about whether or not I passed when I left the testing center. I tested on a Friday morning and received my score (270) on Tuesday morning. Study the XAM text like crazy, get a good night sleep, be confident but don't rush and good luck!

Strategy 69

Submitted by Texas Teachers

Study Strategy

I studied for 4 weeks and used CertifyTeacher.com (CT) and 240Tutoring.com (240T). I think CT was the best of the two study programs and worth the money. The questions and setup are exactly like the test. CT clearly identifies what questions come from what domains, which help you target your studying. For extra practice with fresh questions, I would buy 240T too. I spent under $100 total for both programs and ended up passing with ease the first time.

Testing Strategy

The test is just like the tests on CertifyTeacher.com (CT). It was 100 questions, but you're only graded on 80 of those 100. It was strictly multiple choice and no "check all that apply" or anything like that, which you do see on CT. You have 5 hours to complete the test, but I finished in an hour and 15 minutes. I went through the entire test and submitted without going back to review. I passed on my first time with a 272. If you're like me, going back to review your answers causes more confusion than anything. Good luck!

Strategy 70

Submitted by Texas Teachers

Study Strategy

The materials I used to study were 2 resources: Certify Teacher ($55)and 240 Tutoring ($40). The Certify Teacher does not provide written study materials; it only has the competencies and what you are required to know in each competency. Although there is no study material, the practice questions on Certify Teacher help to prepare you to become familiar with how the test questions will be. 240 Tutoring is the resource that provides study material you can print out and read from each competency, as well as practice questions. These practice questions do not really reflect the type of questions you will encounter on the exam, however it is still good to know the answers to these questions so you can conceptualize the material and apply it to the real test questions. I would recommend that you further define certain terms and concepts from the study material because some terms and concepts are listed without explanation. When it comes to my study method, I would not change it because I see that my study method was successful being that I passed on my first attempt with a 266 out of 300. I studied for a total of 2 months and spent about 1-3 hours per day studying the material and testing myself on the practice tests.

Testing Strategy

The test was not as hard as I anticipated. I left the testing center feeling confident that I had passed. I took my test on a Thursday and received my results on the following Tuesday (it can take up to 2 weeks). Again, use the 240 Tutoring resource for study material (doing a little more research yourself on concepts and terms that are not defined) and use Certify Teacher for the Practice Questions and you should do fine. I took the practice tests on Certify Teacher 9 different times to ensure that I really understood the key concepts of the questions, and to be sure I passed well above the required 240 minimum score each time. It is also wise to test yourself on each competency individually to be sure you have mastered the key concepts. (Certify Teacher allows you to simulate tests on each competency or on all competencies at once, therefore you are able to focus on areas which need improvement).

Strategy 71

Study Strategy

Official Practice Test - Downloaded (Very effective)

Testing Strategy

I found the test to just be a longer version of the test. I would study more and when studying, give the answer the administrator would want, not necessarily what you would do.

Strategy 72

Study Strategy

Preparing for the content exam, I used the practice test posted on the SBEC website for the particular subject matter. Make sure to link the objectives to various scenarios and you will be fine!!

Testing Strategy

The test was little easier than I expected. Make sure you look over everything in the practice test and apply it to various situations.

Strategy 73

Study Strategy

I went over the material questions on the internet. I relied on my college course information.

Testing Strategy

It was easier than I expected. My advise, however, is to relax, read the question twice and be clear on what they're asking you.

Strategy 74

Study Strategy

I used the official test reviews and textbooks like "Reading in the Content area"

Testing Strategy

Take your time and read the questions carefully.

Strategy 75

Study Strategy

Used the study guide from TEXES website and plus a few others. Focused more on test-taking strategies and plus examples of how questions are worded.

Testing Strategy

It was easier. Also shorter had like 90 multiple choice questions. Took approximately one hour. Read the questions slowly, mark key "trip up" words before you read the choices. There are alot of key words like is, is not, most, least, best, and more.

Strategy 76

Study Strategy

I used the TExES-provided study guide, the TEKS and a study manual I bought online from Teaching Solutions (which was pretty much worthless).

Testing Strategy

The test was hard. I walked in very confident and sure of myself, but I walked out wondering whether I had even passed. I did -- 274. I advise studying the TEKS a lot.

Strategy 77

Study Strategy

I used the workbook they provided in combination with the free practice test to determine the reasoning behind the answers.

Testing Strategy

It was harder than I expected. Make sure you take a break in between to give your mind a break.

Strategy 78

Study Strategy

I used the TExES Practice Test Manual purchased at L&M Bookstore for approximately $24.00. Be sure you understand terminology used by educators and what is being asked of you. Do not skim questions. Comprehension is the key.

Testing Strategy

It was somewhat easier than I expected because I expected to be tested on ELA and Reading type questions, not how to teach it. Study for the test as if you are already a teacher.

Strategy 79

Study Strategy

I used the print outs I made from the state. I really focused on knowing the main competencies. The practice test is a good indicator of what will be on the test.

Testing Strategy

It was exactly what I expected, moderately hard. I would tell the person to relax the night before, don't try to cram information. You either know the information or you don't.

Strategy 80

Study Strategy

I used the state practice guide and several teacher resources. For example, Plans for Struggling Readers, Elements of Literature - 6-8, and Grammar and Composition - Houghton.

Testing Strategy

The test was easier than I expected but I spent many hours reviewing material. Note: focus on student-centered teacher-guided answers.

Strategy 81

Study Strategy

I printed examples from the Texas Teachers website. Don't "over" study - too stressful!

Testing Strategy

It was harder than I expected. Relax and think through each question. Do one question at a time.

Strategy 82

Study Strategy

I would tell someone to use the preparation manuals on ETS's website because they show you how the test is structured.

Testing Strategy

It was easier because as long as you know the information, you will not struggle.

Strategy 83

Study Strategy

I used the study material/manual downloaded from the SBEC website. I kept reviewing the practice tests and I kept track of questions I missed. Usually, I missed questions because I did not read closely enough. I also purchased a study manual that had a lot of education definitions that were helpful. It was from the TExES Study Sessions website.

Testing Strategy

I found the test to be very similar to the SBEC practice tests. I would suggest that test takers read both the question and the answer choices through completely, and then try to eliminate the two or three answers you know are incorrect. Take your time and don't over-stress! Think about the competency the question addresses. It will help you find key words and determine the correct answer.

Strategy 84

Study Strategy

I used the free study guide given. I mainly concentrated on the sample questions going I went over them alot. I also used the sample questions for the 8-12 as well.Go over the notes on engaging lessons and study grammar rules for sentence construction.

Testing Strategy

It was harder than I thought. I was so happy I passed better than I thought.One should study some rules about sentence structures and punctuations.

Strategy 85

Study Strategy

It is a challenging test. You need knowledge of how to teach. Most questions were over the best activity a teacher should use in the classroom. Know about emergent readers, ELL learners, graphic organizers, literary terms, read all the TEKS and take practice tests. Study morphemes and graphemes. Know fable and hiaku poems, and several questions over using media and oral language activities in the classroom. I passed with a 272 - you can do it!!!! It took 3 days to get my scores!!!!!

Testing Strategy

In the middle - some easy questions and a few that I had no idea!

Strategy 86

Study Strategy

If I had it to do all over again, I would focus more on the reading portion rather than the writing portion. That said, I used the free materials from the TEXES website. Another study guide may have been better.

Testing Strategy

Though I passed, I found it more difficult than I expected. My minor was English in college, but I graduated 10 years ago. Know your terms, get a good night's sleep, and take your time.

Strategy 87

Study Strategy

Pass the Texes study guide from Ed Publishing and the SBEC study guide that was printed out. Both helped tremendously. They actually over prepare but thats ok. I also looked at the online study community for a lot of help. Following what the SBEC, Pass the Texes and the online study community, I would not have done anything differently.

Testing Strategy

Let me just start by saying I'm not a good standard test taker. I tend to get flustered with a lot of questions. Most parts were ridiculously easy and maybe like 10 questions were hard. But those hard questions were HARD. Don't focus on those but keep moving forward. You have to analyze the questions and every answer can be found if you know the key words that Pass the Texes taught. I used both the 4-8 study guide and the 8-12 study guide. Study ways to teach not always the defintions, but definitions do come up. If you're near a university, ask them if they have whats called a qualifier exam for the Texes. I took mine at UH and it was almost an exact copy of the exam. What I did was divide the real exam into 3 sections of 30 questions and spent an hour doing and reviewing. It really gave me focus and didn't cause me to get overwhelmed. the whole thing took about 3 1/2 hours but I made sure I thought every question out. Give your mind a break between sections. Staring at a computer screen for 3 hours can brutal. I passed with a 263.

Strategy 88

Study Strategy

I only studied the practice test. In my opinion that's all you need. I broke down all of the questions and answers from the practice test and that really prepared me.

Testing Strategy

The test was harder than I expected, you have to make sure you take your time and read every word carefully. My advise is to get some good sleep the night before and go in with the mindset that your going to pass.

Strategy 89

Study Strategy

I used the free materials online that were provided. I relied mainly on the state provided manual for the test.

Testing Strategy

The test was harder than I expected. It did not feel like the English reading or writing were a major part of the test, but relied heavily on classroom management and child assessment of the students. I was expecting more reading and writing questions on the test.

Strategy 90

Study Strategy

I used the study guide provided by the State. It helped me tremendously to understand the content that would be presented on the exam. I also researched any concepts presented in the study material that I was unfamiliar with.

Testing Strategy

During the time I was preparing for the test, I had many distractions (work, death of a loved one, etc.), so I was not as prepared as I would have liked to be. My advice is to start studying as soon as you make up your mind to take the test. The test would have been much easier if I'd been more prepared.

Strategy 91

Study Strategy

I used the free study guides provided by the state on the TExES website just to go over the questions and test myself (they give a free practice test). Honestly, I didn't study very long for it. For the essay portion, research how to analyze literature and poetry. I used my college classes as references. Use terminology like plot scheme, character development, and theme.

Testing Strategy

It was both, hard and easy. During the test, I was nervous because I had never encountered educational terminology before, but if you just relax and think logically and with common sense about questions you're not sure of, you'll find that it's a lot easier than you think. If it makes you feel better, research terminology and theories about educational strategies to help you out. My only hint - just relax!

Strategy 92

Study Strategy

I used the practice test from SBEC- I thought this was very representative of the types of questions on the real test, I also used XAM online book - very thorough, there is some fluff material in the book, but overall very good with terms, etc, it was also good just for general teaching knowledge...Last, I used Pass the TExES, I thought this was a very weak book - so much emphasis on being able to identify the compet. while taking the test - you will waste GOBS of time if while taking the test you actually try to figure out each competency before answering - just answer the question asked! 2 weeks at about 1-2 hours a day should be sufficient for this. Know about: phonemic/phonological awareness, graphemes, morphemes, phonemes, syntax, semantics, stages of reading and spelling devel., context clues, structural analysis, word ident. strategies One more thing, know about the TEKS, but I wouldn't study specifics, at least not till you are hired

Testing Strategy

test was not bad, I had five hours, finished in about 2, got a 269, would recommend computer test

Strategy 93

Study Strategy

SBEC test prep manual and the Sharon Wynne XAM book. I also used the Cliff's Generalist EC-4. The XAM book is not worth it and it is overkill. The Cliff's was great because it broke down the fundamentals of learning how to read. (Phonemes, graphemes, etc.) The SBEC prep was, by far, the best indicator of the test. Phonemic awareness and how to assess progress

Testing Strategy

The test was somewhat challenging but if you use the SBEC quiz as a guide you will be fine. Phonemic awareness, methods on how to get students to accomplish a certain task and how to assess progress are the main things you want to know. Seriously, if you can get 36/37 on the practice test on the SBEC/TEA site then you will be fine. USE IT.

Strategy 94

Study Strategy

I used the on-line study guide, kaplan texes ppr, and i looked up information pertaining to the competencies, I found all of these materials helpful in helping me think the way the test wants you to think. As many have said, this test focuses mainly on how to teach, rather than English concepts, however the way the questions are worded you will need to know your English terms or you will be lost. Know Phonemes, graphemes, pneumonics, etc.

Testing Strategy

This test was much harder than I expected, and I am a straight A student who has always excelled in English. Again I stress, know how teach, this is very important. Also pay attention to the question and learn how to break it down. If the question asks you to choose a lesson that addresses two areas make sure that your answer addresses both areas. Also, remember the teacher is there to teach, immediately eliminate answers that focus on others teaching i.e. the student.Definitely get prep manual of the texes site, and definitely study pedagogy, you will need it. I also found there to be ESL questions, so study that as well. Good Luck!

Strategy 95

Study Strategy

I used the practice test and a text book (Preparing for the Texas PK-4 Teacher Certification). I got this text book from a relative who was a education major in college. The text book helped me with the terms. I study the practice at 5 question per day. I broke each question down to be able to understand why it was that answer.

Testing Strategy

The test was like 95 questions. It took me 4 hours to complete the test. The test was a longer version of the practice test. Early Childhood questions will be on the test. Make sure you take a break in between to help relax your brain. One of the hints for me was "guide". I looked for answers where the teacher had full interaction with the students while guiding them on how to obtain the solution.

Strategy 96

Study Strategy

I used the XAM Generalist 4-8 and the online prep manual from ets. The test format is exactly like the online test.

Testing Strategy

The test was difficult. It had a few questions about content, but the majority is on teaching strategies. I walked out thinking that I failed, but ended up passing. Study teaching strategies and you should be fine.

Strategy 97

Study Strategy

I used an online study guide I downloaded from teachingsolutions.com (or org). It was $57 and worth it! I made flash cards of vocabulary given and studied the strategies. I would have focused more on reading comprehension and less on teaching students how to read.

Testing Strategy

It was easier than I expected. I would tell anyone studying for this exam to not expect there to be any obvious wrong answers to stand out. All answers seem reasonable and the major trick is to figure out which answer best meets the qualifications of the question. If you can figure out what the question is asking for, you can get it right.

Strategy 98

Study Strategy

I used a full month to study using the manual on the state website and the practice exam. The practice test was a good indication of what the real test was like. I went through the study manual and made flashcards for terminology. I looked up stages of reading and phonics development online. The test focuses more on teaching than terms, but you have to know the terms to understand what the question is asking from you. I took the practice test about three times over the month to get a feel for how the questions are worded.

Testing Strategy

The test was HARD. I finished in about 1.5 hr and left thinking I failed it. I know with multiple choice questions to go with my gut and not go back and change answers. There is a nifty option on the computer test that lets you mark questions you want to come back to later. I scored 276/300. The best way to prepare for this test is to study the manual on the state website and think like a teacher. It's not about how well you know content, it's how to teach it.

Strategy 99

Study Strategy

I used the XAM book, various online sources, and the state info.

Testing Strategy

I studied for everything and barely passed. The only advice I can give is not to buy any additional material. The state info was the closest material to the actual test.

Strategy 100

Study Strategy

I used the computer study guide for the TExES test. 117 English Language Arts and Reading from certifyteacher.com. I also used the free online study material from the SBEC.

Testing Strategy

Since I had done some studying, it was about as hard as I expected it to be. I did better than I expected when I finally received my scores. I would advise anyone to study using the materials I used and to be accustomed to the test format. Just think each question through before you answer.

Strategy 101

Study Strategy

Don't think that you need to study ONLY 4-8 Reading and Writing skills and practices for this test! I went in confident about my 4-8 level knowledge and left angry at myself for not reviewing beginning literacy skills as well. There were quite a few scenarios that dealt with students in the stages of reading and writing that I had to dig really deep into my longterm memory to answer, because I hadn't studied those stages since college. Also, don't do what I did and use other study guides that are not specifically geared to this test--it will be a waist of your time. The online TEXES study guide is truly a shorter version of what the actually test will be like.Also, study the TEKS--they will really help you with answering scenario questions about the purpose of given instructional methods.

Testing Strategy

The computer test was not as stressful as I thought it would be. I thought I would struggle with not being able to write notes and highlight important words in the question. However, it was not bad at all. The font was large and only one question came up per screen, and you can place a check mark next to questions you want to go back to review. You can go back and check and change your answers at any time during the test before submitting.

Strategy 102

Study Strategy

I used the Pass the Texes book by Ed Publishing and Consulting. The book was extremely helpful. That book is the only book you need to study, along with the ELAR 4-8 preparation manual on www.texes.ets.org. Also, know your competencies and vocabulary.

Testing Strategy

The test wasn't bad at all. As long as you study and use the Pass the Texes book and the preparation manual, then you should do just fine.

Strategy 103

Study Strategy

I used the official practice test on the SBEC website, XAM study book, and random sample questions online.

Testing Strategy

It was at the same difficulty level as the official practice test on the SBEC website. I took the practice test in the XAM book as well. Take practice tests multiple times to get used to the format. The test is almost entirely scenario based. Know teacher jargon.

Strategy 104

Study Strategy

I used the Mometrix Media TExES (117) study guide. It was very useful and worth the money. I studied for four days have have been out of school since 1997. Obviously I needed more than just a review! I took the exam in the guide and went over each answer I got right and wrong. I used the guide in depth and took the practice exam several times. The flash cards they offer are useless and overwhelming. I wouldn't recommend purchasing them. I also did the free practice exams that are available online.

Testing Strategy

The text was very, very difficult. It is useless to study specific authors or literary time periods. The test is all situational. It is important to study types and levels of learning. What is fluency, oral and written communication, literacy, synonyms, etc. I finished the exam in 2.5 hrs but took the rest of the time to go over it again. This helped tremendously! I recommend going over the exam a second time.

Strategy 105

Study Strategy

Check out this book at your library. It raised my score by 25 points. Informed Reading Teacher: Research-Based Practice, The by Bill Harp and Jo Ann Brewer (Apr 16, 2004)

Strategy 106

Study Strategy

I used the XAM book that I checked out from the Harris County Library. It was a little dated, but still gave me information to help me choose the right answers. Pay close attention to the stages of reading development. I did not pass the practice test from the book, but did well on the exam. I studied for a total of about 12 hours in a period of 4 weeks and I majored in business, so I had basic knowledge before taking the test.

Testing Strategy

I used the XAM book that I checked out from the Harris County Library. It was a little dated, but still gave me information to help me choose the right answers. Pay close attention to the stages of reading development. I did not pass the practice test from the book, but did well on the exam. I studied for a total of about 12 hours in a period of 4 weeks and I majored in business, so I had basic knowledge before taking the test.

Strategy 107

Study Strategy

First, I want to thank everyone that post comments on this website. Your information really helped me narrow down study material for the Texes 117. Secondly, I passed my test on the first attempt! I say this with humility and excitement because without some of the information on this website I would have studied everything without focusing on key elements. Now, I would like to share with you some of my thoughts on the test. I did the practice test from the ETS website as a pre-test and copied down any word used in the scenarios and answer choices that were unfamiliar to me. Study and know the vocabulary used on the test. I found a comprehensive list on quizlet.com but I always make sure the vocabulary words have the same meaning as to what is used on the test. We all know some words have multiple meanings. Many times we may not choose an answer from the choices because we do not know what the term means. This was very helpful. Yes, you end up with a list of words but every word on that practice test will be seen again on the actual test just in a different format and question. Most importantly know what each COMPETENCY for Texes 117 is focused on and key words listed under each concept. I made flashcards to learn the competency and key focal points listed under each. This was a huge success for me passing the test. Again, when reviewing the competencies highlight any words listed under each that you are not familiar with and add those to your vocabulary list. Some of the websites I used for practice were the Ets site, ETS test preparation manual, www.texesexamplepracticetests.com, www.testprepreview.com and tea website. I studied and practiced for this test in sections over a 2 month period. I did push my initial test date back when I felt I was not fully ready to take the test; so do not be shy about delaying your test for a week or two. Your ETS online account will allow you to edit your test dates which also aided in the success of me passing my test. I would rather pay less to postpone a test then the entire fee for not passing it. These are tips from an outstate teacher which I am now certified in Texas. Good Luck and using these study tips will assist you in your success of passing these state test.

Testing Strategy

Prior to taking the test on the computer, go to the ETS website and review the computer based test video. It helped me remember all the key tabs and functions on the computer test before I arrived at the testing center. This way you do not have to waste valuable time clicking on the help button to review what a button means or not using a function because you did not know it was available to you.

Strategy 108

Study Strategy

I had originally scheduled this test a week later than I did but a weekend date opened and I spent 4-5 hours over 3 evenings studying. I used the certifyteacher.com software and the official prep manual.

Testing Strategy

I was not comfortable in my study time due to the three days from registering to taking the test. I spent 4-5 total hours studying for it and found the test pretty difficult. It was almost as hard in my opinion as the ESL. I could usually get the answers down to two choices but then it as extremely difficult. I finished the test in a little under two hours and passed with a 243. I would definitely suggest the certify teacher software and also encourage a longer study time. I believe I would have achieved a higher score with more study time but I passed.

Strategy 109

Study Strategy

First let me say I was certified in Arizona 7-12 ELAR in 2000, there we took a basic skills, professional, and subject test. When I moved to Texas in 2003 I passed the professional and ELAR 8-12 on the first try, but had been teaching at the time. I was very nervous about this test because of the emphasis on early literacy (something I had never used)so all of my study focus was that section of the exam. My study materials included: ets practice questions, reading the textbook: The Informed Reading Teacher, and using the certify teacher study program at (certifyteacher.com).As others have said the test was very much like the ets practice test. Book Reference: Harp, B. & Brewer, J. (2005). The informed reading teacher : research-based practice. Upper Saddle River, N.J: Pearson/Merrill/Prentice Hall.

Testing Strategy

The test itself was as expected and I thought it was easier than the ELAR 8-12 because it was all teaching scenarios and not an "English Exam." My advice is to study early literacy vocabulary and writing vocabulary so that you know what the questions are asking... the test is very close to the ets practice questions, some of the questions were nearly identical, and if you are still feeling iffy after that and need more questions certifyteacher.com is the way to go! I was able to pass with a 271 on the first try with 1 week of studying and having spent the last 9 years out of the classroom I know you guys can too!

Strategy 110

Study Strategy

Took my test yesterday and found out just now that I passed with a score of 267. I liked studying one Domain at a time. Since I teach writing part time, I knew that section would be easier, so I didn't spend much time studying that section. My advice to you is to know pre-phonemic, phonemic, and other aspects of the emergent learner.

Testing Strategy

I took my time taking the test and finished 55 questions within two hours, and then, I took a break. Many of the last 35 questions seemed to be longer question prompts, so I answered all of the short easier ones first. I went back and answered the last 10 or so longer ones. I had time left, so I checked my answers.

Strategy 111

Study Strategy

I used the TeXes Study Guide, TEA pre-tests, this forum, and a vocab list from quizzlet.com. While the study guide is helpful to learn definitions and stages, the biggest factor for me was studying the answers and the reasons why on the 2 pre-tests. What makes this test challenging isn't so much the content (memorize the right definitions and you're set), it's that you have to think differently. You have to read a situation, apply 2-3 different concepts (sometimes scaffolding) and be able to think like a teacher to select the answer that would best serve the student or class described. My first practice test I missed several nuances in the questions that gave clues to the answers.

Testing Strategy

Study the answer guides to train your brain to think the right way. Know the difference between phonemic and phonological awareness, as well as phonemes, graphemes,and morphemes. Make sure to study various stages, such as the stages of literacy, spelling, writing, oral language, etc. There were 3 questions on the emergent literacy stage alone. Know structured analysis and various word identification skills. Once you learn how to think, it's really not bad. It took me 2 hours and that includes going back and reviewing every questions I wasn't 100% about. Good luck!

Strategy 112

Study Strategy

I passed this test on my first try! I used the free state manual to study. I studied for a week an average of 3-4 hours a day. If you would prefer studying for a longer period of time: 2 weeks for example, I'd say that 2 hours a day would be good. When studying the manual make sure and read each competency and all its details. Get a VERY good understanding of each single competency before you take your test. Understanding the competency is how you'll choose the BEST answer.

Testing Strategy

I used the entire 5 hours to take the test. I checked my answers twice. When re-reading the questions I changed a few answers once I realized what the questions were REALLY asking. Pay attention to what they're asking! Use process of elimination; that helped me tremendously! Good luck, you CAN do this!

Strategy 113

Study Strategy

Used the study guide and practice questions from the TExES website. Read over competencies, highlighting key words. Then wrote words and definitions/explanations for those key words in a notebook. After, I went through practice questions and read rationales. I visited this site and read about Quizlet.com and signed up for free account. Ended up making a set for each competency using all notes. Love that website because you can make flash cards or printout study sheets once you have a set. My favorite part was that I could just click to use another user's definition. That saved so much typing! I ended up printing notesheets and used those to review. I also used an ap to monitor how many hours I studied. I didn't clock all of my time but I believe it was 6 or so hours collectively. I am currently a 2nd grade teacher...some of the material was new to me.

Testing Strategy

I left thinking I did not pass. The test was more difficult than expected. It took me 4 hours of carefully analyzing every answer. I knew it would involve scenarios but so many questions had answers that could all be correct. Very important to remember to answer solely based on the information they give you. I was nervous for no reason because I passed!!!

Strategy 114

Study Strategy

I actually studied 30 days prior to taking this challenging exam. I used 240 tutoring, but in hind-sight, the practice test on the state web cite is spot on, and will be your most reliable resource, literally. Don't waste your money. Do not pay for any other resources. I uploaded the vocab from the practice test to quizlet.com. I also turned the teacher competencies into fill-in-the blank Q&A on quizlet.com. Quizlet is free and the test you create can be uploaded to your mobile (smart- phone) like a game.

Testing Strategy

The info and advice I got from this forum got me through this test. Thank you to all the contributors! Once you pass the test like I did, pay it forward. Make sure your name appears exactly as written on your ID. I needed to submit my birth certificate to make a change of one off letter. YOU MUST KNOW THE Teacher COMPETENCIES; not word for word, but the reasons why you are applying a teaching strategy and its goal (VERY IMPORTANT). Almost all of the questions were scenario based! Make sure you, I repeat, MAKE SURE you zero in on the answer selections that involve direct teacher contact, guidance, and supervision. Study haiku, study the reading levels (instructional, frustration, and independent), study emergent stages of development, strategies to improve reading comprehension, and early fluent readers. I took the test on computer and finished 90 questions in 4 1/2 hours. for the sake of time I left blank questions that I struggled with and saved time to go back and reevaluate them. Trust God to help you, and He will! My results took three days to arrive. I passed on the first try Thank God!

Strategy 115

Study Strategy

I visited this website to see what others before me thought about the test and everyone was on point! HOWEVER, I must say that being in the classroom six years and understanding techniques, strategies, and language was a plus. I wouldn't change any study habits that I implored during my studying for Test # 117.

Testing Strategy

The test was actually easy! I worked 35 straight questions and thought to myself, "Is the whole test this easy?" I would recommend Quizlet and the ETS practice tests.

Strategy 116

Study Strategy

I did not purchase any study materials for this exam. I used the study preparation manual directly from the state website www.texes.ets.org and flash cards from Quizlet.com. Before taking this test I took the Generalist EC-6 exam and failed. I had used a study guide that I purchased and spent many hours for a month studying. For this exam 117 I only used the study material directly from the state. It was very to the point for each Competency that I needed to know. Use the resource from the state since that is the exact material that will be on the test.

Testing Strategy

This exam was easier than I expected. (I failed the Generalist exam 191 just a few weeks prior.) The test was exactly 100 questions. I took a break after the first 25 questions and left the room. The breaks I took after that I just looked down for a few minutes so I wouldn't feel strained staring at the computer for so long. As long as you know what each Competency is you will be able to identify the best answer because you will know what you are looking for. After reading each question I was able to identify what competency it was (it will not tell you what competency it is) by decoding words from the question. I used the process of elimination to get rid of some answers and then took my time with the other two answers to make sure I chose what was best. Every single question was scenario based given the grade and type of student. Before taking the test I read a lot of views saying the test was harder than expected so I was nervous but after the first 25 questions I thought "wow, this is not so bad". I finished the test in 3 1/2 hrs and then I went back to review it only changing maybe 3 answers. I took the test on a Friday morning and I received my results on the following Tuesday morning with a passing score of 256.

Strategy 117

Study Strategy

I tallied up what most others used for study materials and the consensus is overwhelming-use the free (official) study guide. There were also a few recommendations for Quizlet. I'd never used it prior, but decided to give it a quick look. I did not, however, upload anything for myself. I simply searched for the test and used a couple vocab lists that someone else made. A majority of my time was spent combing over the study guide and going through the practice test. Like others said here, know concepts rather than definitions. I would say understand the competencies, but I don't see the necessity in memorizing them.

Testing Strategy

I was pretty nervous going into this test. Many of the answers seemed legit and I really had to dig pretty deep into the wording. Leaving the test center, I was not confident at all. I passed with a 256, so my worries were unfounded in the end.

Strategy 118

Study Strategy

I started studying for the exam a month before taking the test. I used the certifyteacher.com website and downloaded the online exam. The exams were actual previous TExES exams used in the past. The flash card application was very useful to study terms I was unfamiliar with. If I made a wrong answer on the practice exams the program would explain the steps to the right answer. It also monitored my progress so I knew how much I was improving. I also used the TExES preparation manual on the ETS website.

Testing Strategy

The exam was very easy and I was able to relate the new questions to everything I studied from the Certify Teacher program.

Strategy 119

Study Strategy

For this test I did what majority of everyone else is saying. I used the free study guide. The study guide did a great job of giving me an idea of how the questions would be structured. I also went on quizlet just to see what others posted as far as terminology was concerned. The majority of my study time was spent on the free study guide and the rationales listed for each question.

Testing Strategy

I wouldn't say the test was hard, but it will require you to take your time and think. In my opinion the test seemed long and you can become fatigued. When I answered 60 questions I decided to take a break just to clear my mind and to refocus, which I think helped. After I finished the test I went back over it and actually changed about 8-10 questions that I felt I misread. My advice is to take a couple of breaks, go back over your answers at the end with a clear mind, and don't panic over a question you may not know because one single question will not cost you the test. I passed the test and I'm sure you will too! Good luck!

Strategy 120

Study Strategy

I took test 117. I used the English area of the 4-8 generalist book and the 117 preparation manual from the TExES website. I learned the competencies(001-O.L.) and I just read over the explanation of the each to familiarize myself with the content. I also made flash cards on quizlet for the comp. and used already made to study vocab. Knowing the definitions of terms is very important for this exam.

Testing Strategy

I used 4 1/2 out of my five hours to test. The test was not easy at all but I prayed to God and studied. I passed on the first time testing.

Strategy 121

Study Strategy

I used the study guide from the state website and the practice tests at CertifyTeacher.com. I took the practice quizzes and tests multiple times and read over the rationales each time. I was pretty nervous and studied for about a month before the test, racking up I would say about 25 hours total study time. I studied the domains and competencies but did not memorize anything. I didn't purchase any additional study materials.

Testing Strategy

The test was about as tough as I thought it would be, perhaps a bit harder. I thought it would be all situational, but there were some questions asking definitions of terms. I marked 26 questions for review that I was unsure of and went back to those, really analyzing the questions before answering. I then went back over the entire test again. I finished in 4 hours, so I really took my time. I got my score today and I passed with a 276.

Strategy 122

Study Strategy

I used the state preparation manual and CertifyTeacher.com. I studied for about 6 weeks. What worked best was me going through each competency and reading it thoroughly to know exactly what the content is going to be for the exam. After that, I went through and defined key words throughout those competencies. I would then study the notes and go through the study questions in the manual to see how questions are going to be asked and formatted. I also read the description for why the answer was right or wrong and why the other answers were correct or not correct. This was extremely helpful, because I was able to see more detailed information about the questions and answer choices! I did the same exact thing on CertifyTeacher, except the website gave more variety quizzes, a practice exam, and flash cards. The website study material is very similar to the test!

Testing Strategy

The test format was easy to break down, but the content was not as easy. I would also study more English content words, so that I can have a better chance of process of elimination! I did pass the test, even though I left feeling unsure. BE positive and study hard; you will get through!

Strategy 123

Study Strategy

I used the state practice exam and the "Pass the TExES" book that I downloaded online. I also used the Quizlet site for the pre-uploaded terms. I took a random practice test that I found on Google, after typing in "TExES 117 practice exam." Like many have said here, take the practice test from the state. It is what resembles the actual test the most. However, be prepared for different questions. If I could have studied differently, I think I would have focused more on the teacher instruction than learning the actual definitions of terms. I did not do well on the practice tests until I went back and read each question thoroughly. I actually studied the practice tests and why the answers were the best choice. I probably would still buy the online book, just for back up. I can't stress enough, focus on teacher instruction and the competencies. I memorized them; you probably don't need to, but it will help you to identify the direction of the questions on the test.

Testing Strategy

The test was very difficult. I studied for about a month and a half. I was extremely nervous. It took me about 3 hours to take the test; I read very carefully. The last 40 questions were tedious, because I was getting antsy to finish. I would suggest closing your eyes for a little bit when you can't focus. The test itself was about 90% situational questions. The rest were actual knowledge based. Know the different visual aids that can be used (KWL, Venn diagram, story map, etc). Know about emergent readers, ELL, media types, and persuasive essays in terms of instruction. I took a break after I had finished answering and marking the answers I was going to look at again. I came back and looked at each answer. I changed about 10 answers. When I left, I did not feel confident. I took the test on Saturday evening and got the scores early Tuesday morning. I got a 253! If I did it, you can!

Strategy 124

Study Strategy

I had about two weeks to study, and this forum was a HUGE help. As others posted, I focused on the preparation manual and practice test from the TEA website. I also reviewed the competencies thoroughly and took a couple other practice tests. I also studied flash cards on Quizlet which were very helpful. I moved to TX from AL, and was not familiar with any of the material. I studied an average of two hours a day.

Testing Strategy

I felt pretty confident going into the test. Initially I did not do well on the practice tests, but after reviewing weak areas and re-taking the practice test I did well. All of the questions were scenario-based, or asking which competency certain assignments were addressing. Many of the questions have more than one fitting answer, but take your time, re-read the question, and look for key-words to see what it's really asking. The test took me almost 3 hours, and this includes checking my answers. I left having 5 questions I was really uncertain about and 5 more I felt 50/50 about. I passed with a 261 on my first attempt.

Strategy 125

Study Strategy

I used 240tutoring and Certify Teacher. 240tutoring has easily digestible material and Certify Teacher gives you a more thorough explanation and mirrors the format of the test almost exactly. I studied for two weeks, working through one competency a day and then getting really comfortable with the exam structure.

Testing Strategy

It was easier than I expected, and I felt pretty well prepared. I chose to stop studying the night before and made sure to enter the exam as relaxed as possible. I took just over two hours to take the exam, and I left feeling confident but unsure. The most important thing is being able to tease out what the question is most literally asking. There are usually two good answers, and you have to apply your knowledge of the competencies to choose the best answer. Like I said, I was nervous about my exam results, but in the end, I passed with a 281 out of 300 on my first attempt!

Strategy 126

Study Strategy

I used the practice test in the prep manual as well as the ELAR section of the Core Subjects 4-8 test. I also used a textbook called "Teaching Reading Strategies". This helped tremendously! I also looked at a bilingual TExES study guide book to learn more about ELL's. In addition, I purchased the Certify Teacher study guide. It helped a little, but not much; the explanations were terrible.

Testing Strategy

You have plenty of time, pace yourself. It is not so bad, if you study the right material. Focus on how to teach and assess ELL's. Know a lot about phonemic awareness, how to teach reading comprehension and writings at all stages, and how to best assess during these stages. Eat something. Get some rest and do your best! I was so scared I didn't pass, but I did!

Strategy 127

Study Strategy

I originally bought 240Tutoring to study for this test. I wanted to do everything I possibly could to pass. In May, I took the 7-12 English content exam and missed it by 5 points, but I did not study as much as I should have. After reviewing the 240Tutoring material, I felt confident I knew the content. To be completely certain, I purchased Certify Teacher program for English 4-8. I am so glad I did, and also disappointed I wasted money on 240Tutoring. Certify Teacher is more expensive, but you have the option to break down the competencies and study them individually; that is what worked for me. By focusing on one at a time, I really grasped each concept. I studied for a solid 3 weeks before the test. The first week I studied about an hour a day. The last two I studied 3-4 hours a day leading up the the exam. I took my exam this past Saturday and passed with a 265!

Testing Strategy

The test was about as hard as I expected, not too hard nor too easy. While taking the test, I would say definitely get a good night worth of sleep. All the reading you do during the exam strains your eyes, so if you're already tired it will be difficult. You are given 4 hours to take the exam. My strategy was completing all 100 questions first and making the ones I was uncertain of for review to go back to. Once I had finished the 100 questions, I went on a bathroom break; it helped to step away from the computer. Upon returning, I was ready to go and review every single question. I ended up changing about 10 answers due to carelessness. Domain II is what you're tested the most on. Certify Teacher does a good job of not only breaking down the competencies to be quizzed on individually, but you can also break down the domains. I would definitely recommend it to anyone! Good luck everyone!

Strategy 128

Study Strategy

When I started studying for the test, I had no idea what I was about to experience. I read this message board which helped me identify which study materials to use and what worked the best. Originally, I was going to go through CertifyTeacher.com and get the online program for $55, but I didn't buy it in enough time before my test. I just used the materials on the Texas Education Certification website (ETS). All the competencies are listed and there's a practice tests with 40 questions. This is all that is needed. I wrote all the competencies down in a notebook and printed the practice test. When I first took the practice test, I did 20 questions and got around 7 wrong. I was so stressed from that because I knew if I didn't understand these questions I would fail. This test is about your critical-thinking skills. I found a couple more practice tests online, one test was on proprofs.com. That test was extremely helpful as well, and had 39 questions. Study and memorize each competency name and know basic information about each. When it comes to test day, you need to be able to read the question and know which competency the question is referring to.

Testing Strategy

It wasn't necessarily hard, but it was nerve-wracking. It took me about 3 hours to take the test out of a possible 5 hours. I didn't take a break at all. I thought I needed one originally but when I got past question 40, I just did the last 60 with no problems. The test is almost like the practice test found on the ETS website, with exception to asking about certain literary terms I wasn't familiar with such as onset rime. Know phonemes and the linguistics in the competencies. Try and memorize that information. I walked out not knowing how I did, but I received my test scores and passed with a 259 out of 300! There are so many horror stories associated with this test, but I passed on the first try. Good luck!

Strategy 129

Study Strategy

I took two weeks to prepare to take this exam and I studied for 2-3 hours a day. I used two references to study: the preparation manual from the ETS website and a practice test from www.proprofs.com. Read each competency; I wouldn't say completely memorize it, but it does help to know each one. The TExES manual is the exact format of the test! Use it to your advantage! The explanations for the study questions are very helpful. I used those to dissect each question. Know why your answer is correct.

Testing Strategy

The test was 100 questions long and the time given is 5 hours. I used about 4 hours total to take the test and review it. Know what the question is asking you; it makes a difference in a right or wrong answer choice! Pay attention to what they say or ask of the teacher in the question. This test is not difficult. Take your time, take a break at the half point if needed, read each question more than once to have a good understanding of what's asked. Use process of elimination. I took my test on a Wednesday morning and got my results by Saturday afternoon. I passed on my first attempt with a 266.

Strategy 130

Study Strategy

I started studying about two weeks prior to the test. I used an XAMonline review book, as well as Quizlet and 240Tutoring. I also searched on Google for test practice questions and used those. I read through the entire content of the XAMonline book and took the practice test. I then went through and looked at all the questions I missed and essentially did corrections. I then made sure to know the basic terminology backwards and forwards (I practiced with a Quizlet I found after searching TExES 117). I went through many rounds of practice questions on 240Tutoring and made sure to read the review materials in the areas I was week in.

Testing Strategy

The biggest thing that helped me when taking the test was to try and pick apart the question to figure out what it was ultimately asking. This test doesn't have extraneous information in the question, so you need to think about how to best respond to each part of what it is asking. If you aren't sure what one of the answers is, use process of elimination for the answer choices that you do know what they are. It is important to know key terms so you can use that basic knowledge as the basis of your critical thinking process. I passed with a 284.

Strategy 131

Study Strategy

I used the ETS preparation manual and the program from CertifyTeacher, both were very helpful. I also made study cards on Quizlet of important terms to study. I reviewed materials related to early language development, like Birsh's Multisensory Teaching of Basic Language Skills, which helped me understand some of the early reading/oral language concepts better. I also bought the TExES Secrets Study Guide from Mometrix, but I found it to be mostly a waste of money. It didn't really focus on the competencies very much. My main advice would be to use the competencies listed as your study guide and seek out any of the concepts you don't know. I passed with a high score doing that.

Testing Strategy

It's very much based off of teacher scenarios you might encounter, not so much a test of your knowledge of concepts. Make sure to understand how you can apply the concepts, not just memorize them.

Strategy 132

Study Strategy

I was told that this test you can't really study for, which is true, to an extent. I brushed up on basic grammar (which seemed to show up more on the practice tests than the actual test). I used the practice exam on the ETS website for ELA 117, as well as the Core Subjects practice test. I broke down each question and looked up anything I didn't understand. I also used the Xam book by Sharon Wynne. It was helpful, but I think the ETS information was most helpful.

Testing Strategy

Read the questions and be sure what they are asking. This should help you eliminate at least one of the answer choices. I only took a 5 minute break to use the bathroom and get a drink of water; they don't let you have water in the room. I took the exam Wednesday morning and received my results Friday afternoon. I passed the test the first time with a 266/300. This exam does not have an essay portion. Good luck!

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