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This test was taken on Computer.
Study: I used the TExES #161 state manual and a copy of "The New Teacher Project" manual that a fellow educator loaned me as well as info. from another ACP candidate. (Her course info. broke down the domains/competencies and coorelated all the info for me.)
Test: Don't let the term "Special Education" fool you! This exam is difficult. There is basic reasoning and statistical math on the exam. Make sure you understand ELA and Reading applications! Don't short yourself on the legal info. either. Prepare yourself for "real world" scenerios. Know the acronyms: IEP, FAPE, ARD, etc. Keep in mind you have an endless budget and resourses available.
Study: I printed out and studied the study guide TExES has online. I read the Competencies, then took the practice test. After completing the sample test, I went over the questions I got wrong and reread the Competencies. Then, I studied the competencies I missed.
Test: During the test, relax. You know the information if you studied the material. I was very nervous days before the exam.
The math questions, in my opinion, are very tricky. One word causes the problem to be solved differently. Make sure to read the questions more than once before answering the question. After answering the question, I reread the question again.
After answering all the questions, I had an hour left. I went back and rechecked my answers. I decided to change a few because I found I made a mistake.
Make sure you choose the answer that helps the child, not the school district or parents.
Study: I used the free test prep from the state and the two study lessons on Texas Teachers. I would have studied more about math and reading disabilities.
Test: It was harder than I expected but it covered so many different disabilities. I passed the test but felt like some of the questions where tricky because the best answer was based on the knowledge you would have to have about special needs children. It seems that I didn't know enough accommodations for each special need.
Study: Study material used: Complete Learning Disabilities Handbook by Joan M. Hartwell
What worked best: Taking notes and getting a general idea from this message board regarding the testing material. Also, going over the TExES Preparation Manual and reviewing the Competencies.
Test: Know the different types of disabilities (eg.autuism, Asperger's, bioplar disorder, fetal alcohol syndrome, OCD); Admission, Review, and Dismissal Process role; Kinesthetic learning style; child development theorist-Maslow, Skinner, Piaget; Disorder such as ADD/ADHD, OCD, ODD, CD; IDEA/FAPE/LRE; lots of IEP examples and scenarios; phonological awareness; syntax; informal/formal assessments; transitional planning for high school kids with LD; mental retardation; IEP team role; parental rights; early intervention; accommodations & assistive technology; documentation log; reinforcers & rewards; informal testing; emergent reader;anecdotal records; ecological assessments; portfolio assessments; task analyses, and functional assessments; role of TASK;life-skills; community based resources; etc.
Study: I used Certify Teacher Software, Xamonline Texes Special Education EC-12,and all the Texas Teachers Special Education Workshop material.Certify Teacher software is good to evaulate your problems areas and to prepare for the test with simulated tests.The real Exam is much harder thantheir simulated exams. The Texas Teachers Special Education workshop material is invaluable if you do a good through review. Lastly, Xamonline Texes Special Educaion EC-12 study guide was important with its detail . I would recommend all three.
Test: The Special Education Texes is the hardest Texes I have taken. Section 3 was the most difficult.Section 2 was the eastiest section.Sudy as much as you can. Prepare good. Do not forget The Texas Teachers Workshop material that you can download.
Study: I downloaded the Certify Teacher software. The flashcards were very helpful in familiarizing yourself with the terms. Be sure to know terms such as: morphology, syntax, phonemic awareness etc. Teaching reading is a major part of the exam, know your terms!! Math is not my strong area and I did not have any algebraic/geometrical equations, just percentages and probability questions. I also read a book on special education which covered IEP, LRE and various disabilities. I studied for about 3 weeks a few hours each day, and I passed.
Test: The exam was more difficult than I thought it would be. I felt very confident going into it, but I wish I had studied how to teach reading more. I wrote down about 5 reading vocabulary terms and their definitions as soon as I sat down so I wouldn't confuse them ex: pragmatics, syntax etc...this way I could reference them throughout the test. I found this helpful.
I did not take any breaks and finished in 3 hours. Re-read the questions and think about what the question is asking.
Study: I just passed the SPED EC-12 exam. It was not east, but was not impossible either.
Thorough study of the law, read questions carefully and twice, recognize the permeating bias and always answer "best" practice.
I used the XAM Study guide. Although it has many typos (they all do), it covers the material very thoroughly and with great detail in explanation of why an answer is correct.
I will sell the study guide (no markings), if interested.
Test: no real difficulties. Narrow answers down to two, then choose best of the two.
Study: Princeton Review EC-4 helped me to analyze the exam and break down the questions to determine the best answer. Also, the On-Line Study Community helped a lot, I just followed their tips and tricks.
Test: There were a few math questions. It was neither easy nor hard. Choosing the answer that had the teacher perform a lot of tasks/duties was my strategy.
Study: Know your TEKS and your vocabulary.
Test: Just what I expected. Read every question carefully.
Study: I downloaded intensive prep of vocabulary from certifyteacher.com.
Test: Much harder! Study all vocabulary. Know by heart the difference between the laws/acts that created Special Education.
After you pass your test, please post your comments.
Click here to post for: Test # 161: Special Education EC-12
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