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The New York State Teacher Certification examinations (NYSTCE) fulfill requirements set forth by New York Education Law and Commissioner's Regulations for teaching certification. Teacher and teaching assistant hopefuls must pass the appropriate exam(s) in order to be granted certification.
Because there is flexibility in the testing schedule, students can choose when to study for and take each required exam. Many sophomores or juniors opt to take the Liberal Arts and Sciences test but wait to take Teaching Skills-Written until they are seniors. Content Specialty tests can be taken during junior or senior years. By organizing in this way, students can focus on a single test at a time. As well, this schedule permits NYSTCE test retakes while the applicant is still in a teacher prep program.
Those who must take the Assessment of Teaching Skills-Performance are encouraged to do so after one or more years of classroom experience. Teachers working with a provisional certificate should submit this video and support documents at least a year before the certificate expires, as scoring can be a lengthy process. The criterion-referenced tests are designed to objectively assess applicants' expertise and comprehension. These tests are based upon a set of educational standards rather than by comparison with other candidates. Test takers must demonstrate competency in both knowledge and skills in order to be authorized to teach in New York public schools.
Multiple sources are consulted in the development of NYSTCE test questions. NY learning standards, curriculum guides, classroom texts, and teacher certification standards and curriculum are some of the sources used. Committees are composed of teachers, educators in higher education teacher courses, and professionals in curriculum content and assessment. Committee members contribute to creating and reviewing questions for appropriate content and applicability. It's important for test applicants to be as prepared as possible. In order to help you develop a good foundation, we have created a number of free NYSTCE practice questions. These questions aren't simplistic or obvious but accurately reflect material covered by the tests.
Last Updated: 07/29/2014
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