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Praxis Study Guide - Prepare Using a Praxis Study Guide

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The Praxis I, Praxis II, and Praxis III tests are standardized exams required for teacher certification and given by the Educational Testing Service (ETS). When a person wants to go to school to become a teacher, he or she must pass both the Praxis I and the Praxis II exams before getting licensed. Most states require both the Praxis I and Praxis II in order for teachers to be licensed, while some states also require the Praxis III. Before taking the Praxis exams, it is wise to use a Praxis study guide to familiarize yourself with the details of the exam and the type of questions to expect.

The Praxis I test is the most basic Praxis exam that must be taken before a person gains acceptance into a teacher education program at a university. The test is like many other standardized tests like the SAT in that it measures mathematics, writing, and reading comprehension skills. The Praxis II exams measure the knowledge of test takers in a variety of subjects such as special topics in sciences, foreign languages, and mathematics.

Some students may be able to score acceptably on the Praxis tests without the aid of a Praxis study guide, but most people will need the extra help to prepare for the exam. Even for individuals who feel like they do not need a Praxis study guide to help them with the content of the test, there are still benefits to be gained from briefly looking through one. One reason to look through a praxis study guide is to understand the format of the test and whether or not guessing will affect your score negatively. Some exams penalize for wrong answers, while other standardized tests encourage guessing. Also, looking through the guide to get an idea of the type and style of questions that will be asked is always a good idea. Many Praxis study guides can be found online that are free. You should take the time and effort to look at a few before you take the exam so that you can maximize your chances of scoring well.

The Praxis exams are administered in two ways. The first method is the traditional paper based testing that can be taken in any number of sites around the country. In order to take a paper based exam, you will have to register online at the ETS website several weeks prior to the exam date. The second testing method is computer based testing. The computerized Praxis exam uses adaptive testing. In exams that use adaptive testing, the computer begins by asking questions that are of medium difficulty. If the test taker gets the question correct, the computer asks a question that is considered harder. If the test take gets the answer wrong, the difficulty level of the questions get easier. It is important to do your best to get the answers for the first few questions correct, because doing so can shorten the length of your exam and boost your baseline score dramatically. The Praxis exam does not penalize for incorrect answers, so it is safe to make educated guesses. A student can take a computer based Praxis exam a maximum of six times per year. Unlike paper based testing, test takers can schedule an appointment at a testing center or walk in unannounced to take the exam.

There are four parts to the Praxis exam. The first section measures the reading comprehension of the test taker. During the test, a person will be asked to read a short paragraph and then answer a series of multiple choice questions that pertain to the subject matter of the selection. Questions are generally based more on interpretation of the subject matter rather than fact. Next, the Praxis exam contains a mathematics section. The mathematics section tests knowledge about basic mathematics concepts, basic algebra, and simple geometry. One part of the math section involves working out problems, while the second requires a person to interpret graphs and data sets. The final part of the Praxis exam tests a person’s writing and English abilities. The first part of the writing section deals with basic grammar, sentence structure, and word choice. The second part of the exam consists of writing an essay. In the essay portion, you will be given a topic that you have to write about. Scoring will be based on your writing style, organization, focus, and grammar. A good Praxis study guide will have example essay questions and examples of good essays that you can use as a reference.

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