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Strategy #21

This test was taken on Computer.

Study: 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 I also turned the teacher competencies into fill-in-the blank Q&A on Quizlet is free and the test you create can be uploaded to your mobile (smart- phone) like a game.

Test: 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 #22

This test was taken on Computer.

Study: 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 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.

Test: 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 #23

This test was taken on Paper.

Study: 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.

Test: 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 #24

This test was taken on Computer.

Study: I used the TeXes Study Guide, TEA pre-tests, this forum, and a vocab list from 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.

Test: 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 #25

This test was taken on Computer.

Study: 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.

Test: 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 #26

This test was taken on Computer.

Study: 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 ( 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.

Test: 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 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 #27

This test was taken on Computer.

Study: 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 software and the official prep manual.

Test: 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 #28

This test was taken on Computer.

Study: 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 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,, 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.

Test: 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 #29

This test was taken on Computer.

Study: 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.

Test: 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 #30

This test was taken on Computer.

Study: 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)


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