Before teachers enter the classroom for the first time, they must demonstrate a mastery of the skills and knowledge they hope to impart upon students. Qualifying exams help ensure licensed educators are held to the highest professional standards. One such group of exams is the National Evaluation Series, or NES tests. If you're registered for an NES exam and are eager to pass on your first attempt, this primer will help set you up for success. Along with NES practice tests and thorough study habits, the information below can give you the leg up you need to earn a passing score.
Designed to assess the classroom readiness of new educators, the NES tests are frequently used to qualify teachers in Oregon, Arizona, Colorado, California, Washington, Illinois, Wisconsin and New Mexico. While not required for every teaching job in those states, a passing NES score is necessary for most public school positions. Comprised of 38 different teaching examinations, the NES tests are broken up into six categories: Professional Knowledge, Elementary Assessments, Middle Grades Assessments, Secondary Assessments, K-12 Assessment and Essential Academic Skills. The computer-based exams rely heavily on multiple-choice questions, though some tests include constructed response items. No matter which test you're registered for, NES practice exams are a great way to prepare yourself for the real thing.
If you're hoping to teach public school in Illinois, Wisconsin, New Mexico, Washington, Oregon, California, Colorado or Arizona, you'll likely need to take and pass at least one NES test. Aspiring teachers in those states should complete their college coursework before registering for the exam. It's also worth checking the requirements of the school district where you hope to work – every district has different qualifications for the teachers they hire. Should you need to register for a NES test, make sure you undergo extensive NES exam prep ahead of your test date.
Each NES test is scored on a scale of 100 to 300 points. In order to pass, you'll need to score at least 220 points on each exam. Individual states and school districts may set their required scores higher, though, so it's a good idea to check to see what score you'll need to earn in order to work as a teacher in your preferred area. This information can help guide your NES test prep and inform your study strategies.
There's no one way to prepare for the NES, but studies repeatedly find that practice testing is one of the best forms of exam prep. By identifying exactly which topics and subject areas you struggle with, you'll be able to study smarter, not harder. NES exam practice tests are the ideal way to familiarize yourself with the content, pacing and format of the test – all from the convenience of your living room.
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