This exam is required for all those who are seeking certification in the state of Texas as an ESL teacher. It is designed to evaluate the skills, abilities, and knowledge that are essential to entry-level educators in this field of study.
Who is Eligible?
To be eligible to take any TExES exam(s) you must:
- Have permission from your Educator Preparation Program (EPP) or school district or hold a bachelor’s degree and teaching certificate from your state or country
- Create or have a TEA profile account
- Create or have a testing account
Candidates from charter schools or those using the Pre-Admission content tests (PACT) route do not need to create a TEA account. Instead, you simply create a testing account using the TEA ID you have been provided with through those programs.
There is a fee of $116 for this exam.
When and Where is it Taken?
This exam can be scheduled year-round on a first come, first served basis. Testing centers provided by Pearson VUE are available throughout the state of Texas and nationwide. During registration, you will be provided with a complete list of all available dates, times, and locations.
It is recommended that you register as soon as possible as seating and space may be limited during some testing sessions.
If you should need to reschedule or cancel your exam for any reason, you may do so at any time up until the last 48 hours before your scheduled exam to receive a refund and ensure that you are not charged additional fees.
Special accommodations are available for those who may not be able to test under normal conditions. This request should be made known during your application process as it will need to be approved of.
What Should I Bring?
It is important that arrive early or on time for your appointment. Those who arrive late will not be allowed to test and will forfeit any fees paid. They will also have to reregister and submit another payment to take this exam.
You will need to present two current and valid forms of identification when you arrive at the testing center. These must include your signature and full name as it appears on your registration information. One of these must be a primary or photo ID with a recent and recognizable photo.
This is a computer-administered exam. As such all personal materials are prohibited. This includes any electronic devices such as cell phones, food and drinks, watches and jewelry, calculators, scratch paper, and study materials. If you bring any such items, they will be stored in a designated locker outside of the testing area until your exam is complete.
What is Covered?
This exam is made up of 80 selected-response questions. It is broken into three main sections or domains which cover several different competencies you are expected to know.
You are given a total of five hours, including 15 minutes for a brief tutorial and compliance agreement.
Below is an outline of the sections of the exam and what they entail.
Language Concepts and Language Acquisition
Structure and conventions of the English language and fundamental language concepts, understanding the concepts of first and second language acquisition and the relationship between the two
ESL Instruction and Assessment
ESL teaching methods and how to use them to effectively give appropriate instruction, communicative English language development, English literacy development, academic-language development, content-area learning, formal and informal assessment procedures and instruments, using assessment results to adapt instruction
Foundations of ESL Education, Cultural Awareness, and Family and Community Involvement
Types of ESL programs, foundations of ESL education, factors that affect students’ learning, strategies for creating an effective multicultural and multilingual learning environment, advocation of students, coordination with families and community
Your exam will likely include some pretest questions that do not count towards your score. These will not be identified as such, making it important to answer all questions.
How is it Scored?
Your score report will be emailed to you and available by 10 pm central time on the date listed as your score reporting date. Most exams score reporting dates are within seven days from your test day. These scores are automatically made available to TEA, SBEC, and EPP, if applicable.
On your score report, you will find your total scaled score, your pass/fail status, and a breakdown of your performance for each major domain and competency tested. Scores are scaled on a range from 100 to 300. You must receive a score of at least 240 to be considered passing.
If you do not pass and would like to retake the exam you may do so after a 45-day waiting period from your last attempt. You will have to pay another exam fee and are limited to five attempts.
How Can I Prepare for the TExES ESL Test?
That’s a great question. We’ve broken down the answer into three parts.
- Do yourself a favor and study. Do not walk in unprepared. We have recommended prep materials below, but that only helps if you actually try. Plus, studying is actually proven to be the best antidote to test anxiety.
- Take care of yourself. Make sure you’re eating well, exercising, and sleeping. All of these things are scientifically linked to brain performance. If you take care of your body, you’ll be helping your grades.
- Get a study guide or set of flashcards. Some people study better a certain way. Find your study strengths and make the most of them. We’ve tried to make it easy for you by tracking down the best study guide and flashcard set for your exam. Below you’ll see links to both!