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This test was taken on Computer.
Study: I used a Campbell's college biology textbook, a high school AP biology test review book, and the sample questions on the TEA website. Took one full month to study; used the first 20 days to read both text books, and the final 10 days to review and self-test. Turned out to be a great strategy!
Test: The test was exactly what I expected, and very similar to the TEA sample questions. Most questions were "synthesis" questions, not "definition" questions, meaning you had to understand the concepts and the definitions implicitly to synthesize the correct answer. It was NOT fact regurgitation, so you really need to understand your stuff! I was tested all the way from molecular biology/origins of life up through trophic levels/system ecology. I have a strong biology background, but I do feel that really reading (not skimming) both textbooks was the best preparation. Take a solid month to prepare, and work at it a little each day (about 2 hrs). I'd say you are tested at a college-level "biology for non-bio majors" level, at least from my previous testing experience in the subject. I passed with a very high score (290 out of a possible 300) on my first try, so its definitely do-able!
Study: I actually used my son's 9th grade Biology text book, the free online material, and I purchased the study guide from Morrison Media. I have to say, the text book helped me more than anything else. I just went through and outlined each chapter and focused more on the info I had trouble remembering from college (I was a Nursing major). By the way, the Morrison Media book was a waste of $50.00.
Test: It was a difficult test. I am normally a good test taker, but I came out of this one not sure how I did. If I had to do it again, I would focus on cellular biology and heredity. I don't know if that helps since each test is different. All that being said, I passed on the first try and so can you!
This test was taken on Paper.
Study: If you have a strong biology background, most studying will just be a review of key terms. All you really need to study is a college intro biology text or a high school biology text.
Test: This exam was much easier than I had anticipated. The material is pretty basic: cell structures & functions, genetics, kindgoms, & ecology. There were ALOT of ecology questions so pay close attention to interactions between organisms and between organisms and their environment. Know the basic key terms like mutualism, commensalism, predation, parasitism, ecosystem, biodome, biosphere, etc.
Study: I studied a college level basic biology book. I have a BS in biology so it was mostly a review and brushing up on terms. Make sure to study evolution, ecology, and diagrams.
Test: The test was much easier and much shorter than I expected. You have plenty of time by FAR, so take your time and review your answers. Go through the competencies and make sure you know something about all of them and you will do great!
Study: I used the XAM book for TExES Life Science 8 - 12. Review content but also review the sample test on TEA to see how the questions are given. Give yourself at least 2 weeks to study.
Test: Harder than I expected.
Study: I studied a college Biology book, State Preparation manual,and Teaching Solutions manual. I used all three for each one alone was insufficient.
Test: It was harder than I expected. Study cells, Ecology, and the different kingdoms.
Study: I used all the study guides from the Texas Teachers website as well as the study guide from TExES testing website. Texas Teachers study guides helped but the other was a waste of money. I would study more textbooks on Ecosystems.
Test: It was hard because there was so much more reading than I expected. I would tell others to take their time and make sure and read the question well.
Study: I used GRE Biology preparation books and Biology books from the public library to study for the test. Best strategy was studying all the key features of all the important concepts of Biology. The test uses a lot of common sense.
Test: The test is a lot easier than one would expect. The time provided to complete the test is ridiculously long. My hints are to use your instinct and educated guess to answer questions you do not know. You should spend time making sure you understand what the question is asking.
Study: I used the online Prep Manual. I also used a Biology Prep Manual.
Test: This test was easier than I anticipated but I still needed more study time. The test only had a few Molecular Biology questions.
Study: I used the state prep manual. Know ALL of it! (the exam will cover every domain and comp.) I used Morrison Media Flash Cards and printed manual. These guides will help familiarize one with the basics but will NOT teach one to apply the material. I paid over $120 for both. The Mo-Media guides are FULL of annoying typos and not very professional looking.
Test: I just retook the CAT LS 138 exam. This was my second attempt (first attempt was paper based) I think the two test forms were very very similar. I think the advantage of taking it on the computer is that one doesn't have to worry about monitoring the scantron sheet so closely and rechecking everything. I thought the CAT version was the least stressful. I did not pass, again. I did improve my score. I am disappointed because I DO have an average science background (20 college hours). I have taken two other content area exams and have passed both successfully the first time. This is a difficult exam! Know ALL the domains. The test covers everyone of them. Keep in mind that just because one is well studied in Science does not make one a good teacher of Science. I suggest reading up on teaching or methods of delivery for Science.
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