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Read comments on Test # 161 - Special Education EC-12

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Strategy #1

This test was taken on Computer.

Study: I highly recommend doing the Special Education Teachers module here on Texas Teachers - it was a great resource and helped me feel well prepared for all sections except Domain III, competencies 8 & 9, teaching English Language Arts/Reading/Math. I checked out several resources from the library that focused on these topics, the most helpful of which was: Curriculum, Assessments, and Instruction by Bigge. There are two chapters on ELA and one on Math which were great for concepts and context. What iced it for me was biting the bullet and paying the $55 for Going through all 160-odd ELA and Math questions really got me comfortable with the variety of what could be asked. I really appreciated the opportunity to sit down and take a full 120 question test to understand what it would be like. I also appreciated walking through the flashcards as well. I used the resources provided by the TExES prep manual, which I highly recommend, but it definitely is insufficient on its own. I used T-CERT, which, by the time I got there, I knew most of the information (from the Texas Teachers module). I studied for 5 weeks, averaging 15 - 20 hours per week.

Test: As I worked through the 120 question test at home in just over two hours (recognizing at that point, I had seen all of the ELA/Math questions and several of the others were repeats), it was a bit of a surprise to have taken a full 4.5 hours to complete the test. I found it helped me tremendously to write out the key words of the question and the answer choices on my scratch paper to work through the details in my mind. I had time to go back and check the ones I marked, and I think I changed one, but it was reassuring to have the time to go back. If you have adequately prepared, I think you will find the test more long than hard. It definitely is primarily application questions, so you must understand the concepts of each domain and competency well enough to apply them, and I thought the questions on were very helpful in practicing application, as well as their description of the whys behind each correct answer. I got a 277, and that echoed how I felt coming out of the test - which was that I had an informed opinion on almost all of the questions and felt pretty good about how well I did. I took the test on a Friday, and found out my scored early afternoon the following Tuesday. This was my first test of this type to take.!

Strategy #2

This test was taken on Paper.

Study: I studied for about a month and a half. The first two weeks I read the REA book and highlighted important areas. The next two weeks I studied Certify teacher (Excellent for practice tests!). Certify teacher helped with understanding the type of questions to expect for each domain. The final two weeks I reviewed TCERT (great at explaining the different types of disabilities and how to instruct them regarding their disability); I also watched a couple of Youtube SPED videos as an overview of what I have learned. Make sure you check your out the free practice tests from google. When all the questions become repetitive...that's when you know your ready. Just make SURE you STUDY!

Test: I passed with 261! The test is not as hard as many try to say if you had enough time to prepare. The test had questions regarding the different types of disabilities(ex. dyslexia). I had about five math questions, none of them were too hard. Make sure you know how to calculate your percentages off a certain item. The test was about 70% scenario based it seemed, on how to instruct a disability. Other questions were more factual questions.

Strategy #3

This test was taken on Computer.

Study: I used the XAMOnline book, as well as the TeXes study guide. I read a lot of the book and answered the study questions for both.

Test: I passed the test the first time with a 260. It was very long and I had to get up and take a break. I went through the test twice and really took my time. Pay close attention to what the question is asking. There were a lot of Asperger's questions on the test. It really helped to answer the practice questions first.

Strategy #4

This test was taken on Computer.

Study: I used T-Cert, Certify Teacher, and EC-6 book. I also took component of sped and a generalist class.

Test: The test was as hard a I thought it would be. You need to focus on what the question is asking for. The questions were mostly about learning disabilities and your responsibility as a educator, in addition to about 20 questions on reading and 20 on math. I passed the first time with 251. Make sure you recheck questions you may doubt. Have faith you will pass and don't over study because you will forget important things. Good Luck!

Strategy #5

This test was taken on Computer.

Study: I used the terms on Quizlet to study as well as some information from the online courses for Texas Teachers. I tend to procrastinate so I actually began studying two weeks before the exam. I would have long study sessions at my local coffee shop. If I could go back, I would study for shorter amounts of time and start at least 1 month before the test. I'd also purchase a study book to become familiar with the types of questions that would be asked. Quizlet helped to familiarize me with the information but did not help with the depth.

Test: The test contained a bit more than I thought would be on it. But, like most tests, you could deduct what the best answer is if you know the purpose of Special Education. Keep in mind, however, that grade level definitely does make a difference in some of the answers. In preparing for the test, you should use the prep manuals given by TExES to review the competencies to develop a more in-depth idea of what the questions want from you.

Strategy #6

This test was taken on Paper.

Study: I studied for the test using REA and felt ready until I took the T-Cert course online. The T-Cert helped fill in the gaps that the REA book missed. I studied for about an hour a day 2 weeks before the test as well as one full Saturday. I had a lot of knowledge going into the test because of working in special education as an aide. I believe that helped me the most.

Test: The test was much harder than I thought it would be. I was caught off guard with the amount of Language Arts and Math questions. I had expected there to only be situation based questions. In the end I had marked 41 questions to go back and review, mostly Language Arts. I was scared I hadn't passed but ended up getting my results 3 days later and passed with a 290! I took 4 hours and 30 minutes with one 3 minute break. I had time to go through the entire test twice to double check my answers. My advice is to focus on the laws and language arts. Good Luck!

Strategy #7

This test was taken on Paper.

Study: I studied for this exam using Quizlet and the REA Texes study guide. The best advice that I found on the online study community was to take the Special Ed online course before your test. That course is designed to prepare you for the actual test.

Test: The test was mostly scenario-based which I had expected. I finished in under 2 hours. I took the test on a Thursday and received score on Tuesday. I passed with a 276.

Strategy #8

This test was taken on Computer.

Study: Do the modules located at They were EXTREMELY helpful! Take the practice test and read all of the handouts they offer! It seems like a lot but it really isn't. I completed the module once only and didn't really study anything else.

Test: While taking the test itself, imagine the "perfect" school environment. The questions are designed to assume the school has an unlimited budget along with unlimited time. I ended up scoring a 272 out of 300! GOOD LUCK :)

Strategy #9

This test was taken on Computer.

Study: I used the Texes test preparation manual from the Texes website, and some of the practice test questions on the site as well.

Test: I walked away from the test feeling like I had failed the exam. I think it's important to view the answers and focus on student-centered responses. Take your time, be confident, and mark questions that you're not certain about. I passed with a 250. Best wishes.

Strategy #10

This test was taken on Computer.

Study: I did not buy any study materials for the Special Education exam. I studied and learned the terms. If you know the terms you can answer a majority of the questions, of which many are situational questions. I also looked up free practice exams online and studied those for 2 days before the test. I studied 2 weeks for maybe an hour a day.

Test: You may feel you didn't do well on the exam because a lot of questions have several right answers, but you have to choose the best answer. You will do better than you think. I thought I was going to be borderline, but I passed with a 264. I took the test on a Saturday and received my scores on Tuesday.

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