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This test was taken on Computer.
Study: I used the prep manual from the http://cms.texes-ets.org/texes/prepmaterials/texes-preparation-manuals website and software from www.certifyteacher.com. I feel like the practice manual from Texes ETS was a good gauge of what would be covered, just not enough of it. I "aced" the practice exams by Certify Teacher and they did absolutely nothing for me. I would venture to say that they covered about 20% of the topics that were actually on the test. I was so unprepared, and should've used many more resources. After failing the test, I have read more from the online study community posts and realize that I'm not alone. I plan to use Khan Academy and the TAKS study guides for the retake. Hopefully, this will prepare me.
Test: I kept reading that we were going to be issued a calculator, but when I checked in they said that we weren't allowed to have one. I don't think that was detrimental to my passing or failing, but it definitely would've made me feel more confident. I had no idea there would be so much chemistry on the test. I was prepared to balance equations, but that wasn't even a question...and like I said I was very ill prepared. Also study your Earth Science, Life Science, and Physical Science anywhere you can. Hope this is helpful. Best of luck.
This test was taken on Paper.
Study: I had used the free ETS competency review, some school books and this website that HELPED me so much. The website is http://www.biology4kids.com/map.html. They also have physics, chemistry, astronomy, and biology. Though they don't go in depth of the subject, it is a great basic review.
Test: The first time I just took the test just to see what was on it. I mainly used the biology 4 kids website to help me get some basic concepts down, the XAM study guide didn't help me much since it mainly went through the competencies in depth (New version). Chemistry was one of the major things on this test, the second was the professional pedagogy. The pedagogy part was the most difficult since it was very hypothetical, lots of scenarios and always gives you 2 words that are closely related to the question, oh and those are going to be your main trick questions there. Good luck everyone.
Study: I was spending time studying for the high school science test so I didn't study lower level science per se, but I did study 4-8 teaching methods. I read the Texes Xam online book.
Test: The test was easy. You do need to know your science and the teaching methods. It took me an hour and a half to do the test. Just got scored: 280....yay! Good Luck!
Study: I used the xam book, studied for about a month on and off, read through it and took notes as I went along. I also used some quiz apps on my phone. I think taking the notes helped. First try I passed with a 251!
Test: The physical science part was much harder than expected. The chemistry questions were a lot more advanced than I had studied for. I got half of the question right in that section.
Study: I used the TeXes Science 4-8 Testing Guide (though some of the information in it is wrong or can be misleading and confusing), some borrowed 7th and 8th grade Science books, the study guides and tests you can find online, and then a lot of internet research. I studied for like 3 weeks before I took the test, and I made sure I was overly prepared. If I was to study diferently I would have definitely looked over the Earth Science more, but overall I felt pretty confident once I left the testing area.
Test: The test was overall pretty fair. It was not too hard, nor was it easy. If you don't study you're probably going to have some difficulty! I would definitely recommend looking over the Periodic table, and Earth Science. If you don't know the answer to a question or you have it narrowed down to two answers, mark the question and go on. Don't let yourself get frustrated with the one question, go back later and look over the question again. It is funny how you can remember stuff later in the exam. I would definitely say that you don't need to take the test if you haven't studied. You have your obvious answer questions, but those are few and far between. If you study about three weeks before the test, every day, for about 2-3 hours a day, you should be golden. If you have free time just look over stuff, your brain absorbs more than you think just constantly looking over the information. Good Luck!
Study: I used the XAMonline.com TExES Science 4-8 116 book and it was helpful.
Test: Some of the questions were very simple, but others were a bit more tedious and I had to break it apart to know what they were asking for. Most of what was on the exam I knew already from prior biology courses and a few things I had reviewed from the book were on the exam.
Study: Use the xam online book. It really breaks down everything you need to know.
Test: Just be prepared and do practice test in back of book.
Study: To be honest, I really didn't prepare for this exam. I STARTED reading the XAM prep manual at 4 am the day of my test, which was at 8:30 am. I read about half of it and then quickly glanced over the practice exam available on the TEXES website right before the exam in my car. I was EXTREMELY nervous because reading the comments on this website really scared me. I would definitely prepare for the exam at least 2 weeks in advance to reduce test anxiety. (more time if you have been out of school)
Test: I JUST took the test and I must say it was extremely easy in my opinion. (I was expecting a difficult test. The practice exam was a harder then the actual exam!!) A lot of the questions were basic recall and there were some simple calculations. I could not believe some of the questions asked on this test because there were VERY BASIC. If you are a recent grad and majored in biology, this is no problem for you. Even if you didn't major in biology, you can use common sense and process of elimination to select the correct answer. I would definitely review various texts and topics in advance to refresh your memory and to reduce test anxiety. If you feel prepared, get a good night's sleep, and eat breakfast you will be ready to take this test. Knowing the material and being in a good physical/emotional state is the key to passing any test. I would also focus on earth science, especially if this is a weak area for you. I did not expect so many questions on this topic. Know how to do simple calculations like balancing equations, able to determine the next number in a pattern, and using a chemical equation to figure out mole ratios and knowing how to convert from grams to moles when given information. The biggest piece of advice I can give you is TAKE YOUR TIME, dont stress or freak out about what the question is asking you. Read the question slowly and read the answers slowly. Then read them again to understand what the question is asking. Use the scratch paper to draw pictures or write things down. Then use process of elimination. YOU KNOW THE ANSWER just think back to what you learned in your classes and through your teaching experiences. YOU CAN DO IT! :-D
Study: I used Brain Pop and found that helpful for review of general concepts. I also purchased MoMedia review guide, which I found poorly organized and basically useless.
Test: I walked out of the test knowing that I had not studied Chemistry in enough depth, and that indeed was a problem area when I received my scores. Best wishes to all!
Study: I know the XAM online book is looked down on because of the ridiculous number of grammatical errors it involves, but content wise it really is a very good book. In fact, it was the only book I used. I read the book in its entirety over a few days without trying to gleam every last detail. I just read it at an enjoyable pace taking what I could from it. After I read it all, I went back and re-read everything. The difference was this time I left no stone unturned. I analyzed every sentence and didn't move until I was certain I knew what was being taught. Pretty easy since I had already read it once before. As I moved through each sub section, I answered the questions in the back of the book and at the end of each section (physical science for example). I read the question explanations which are found after the practice exam. I felt completely confident going into this exam based on the material alone. I did go over the official study guide questions once. The last thing I did was take the released TAKS exams for Science grades 5 and 8. I didn't even bother with the high school level TAKS exams, although they can't hurt. I disagree with saying any of this is college level content. The Science 8-12 has some college freshman level content, but this test does not.
Test: This really is not a hard test if you study properly. I passed pretty comfortably, and I am far from being genius. The majority of the questions were extremely easy questions if you read and understand the XAM book. There were only 12 out of 90 questions that I had to mark because I wasn't certain about them. The rest I was pretty confident in. Even a lot of those 12, I felt semi-confident in. The good news is that almost every question had 2 immediate throw away answers that were simply ridiculous. 50/50 odds help a lot on those you aren't certain about. Give yourself at least 2 weeks and study every day. I suggest focusing on a new section every day. By section I mean Physical Science or all of Earth and Space Science. In other words, the sections as outlined in the XAM book. There was only 1 calculation question. All of the needed information was provided in the question. There was no formula needed. It was very basic math that could be done in your head or on the scratch paper provided. It wasn't needed though and I'm not that great at math. Study the XAM, answer the official review questions, and take the released TAKS tests. It really is not that bad.
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