Constructivist principles of learning and teaching methods

praxis ii principles of learning and teaching 7-12 and principles of language learning and teaching 3rd edition pdf
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® The Praxis Study Companion Principles of Learning and Teaching: Grades 7–12 5624 www.ets.org/praxisWelcome to the Praxis® Study Companion Welcome to the Praxis® Study Companion Prepare to Show What You Know You have been working to acquire the knowledge and skills you need for your teaching career. Now you are ready to demonstrate your abilities by taking a Praxis® test. Using The Praxis Series® Study Companion is a smart way to prepare for the test so you can do your best on test day. This guide can help keep you on track and make the most efficient use of your study time. The Study Companion contains practical information and helpful tools, including: • An o verview of the Praxis tests • Specific information on the Praxis test you are taking • A template study plan • Study topics • P ractice questions and explanations of correct answers • T est-taking tips and strategies • F requently asked questions • Links t o more detailed information So where should you start? Begin by reviewing this guide in its entirety and note those sections that you need to revisit. Then you can create your own personalized study plan and schedule based on your individual needs and how much time you have before test day. Keep in mind that study habits are individual. There are many different ways to successfully prepare for your test. Some people study better on their own, while others prefer a group dynamic. You may have more energy early in the day, but another test taker may concentrate better in the evening. So use this guide to develop the approach that works best for you. Your teaching career begins with preparation. Good luck Know What to Expect Which tests should I take? Each state or agency that uses the Praxis tests sets its own requirements for which test or tests you must take for the teaching area you wish to pursue. Before you register for a test, confirm your state or agency’s testing requirements at www.ets.org/praxis/states. How are the Praxis tests given? Praxis tests are given on computer. Other formats are available for test takers approved for accommodations (see page 51). The Praxis® Study Companion 2Welcome to the Praxis® Study Companion What should I expect when taking the test on computer? When taking the test on computer, you can expect to be asked to provide proper identification at the test center. Once admitted, you will be given the opportunity to learn how the computer interface works (how to answer questions, how to skip questions, how to go back to questions you skipped, etc.) before the testing time begins. Watch the What to Expect on Test Day video to see what the experience is like. Where and when are the Praxis tests offered? You can select the test center that is most convenient for you. The Praxis tests are administered through an international network of test centers, which includes Prometric® Testing Centers, some universities, and other locations throughout the world. Testing schedules may differ, so see the Praxis Web site for more detailed test registration information at www. . ets.org/praxis/register The Praxis® Study Companion 3Table of Contents Table of Contents ® The Praxis Study Companion guides you through the steps to success 1. Learn About Your Test ....................................................................................................5 Learn about the specific test you will be taking 2. F amiliarize Yourself with Test Questions ................................................................... 14 Become comfortable with the types of questions you’ll find on the Praxis tests 3. Practice with Sample Test Questions ......................................................................... 18 Answer practice questions and find explanations for correct answers 4. Determine Your Strategy for Success ......................................................................... 29 Set clear goals and deadlines so your test preparation is focused and efficient 5. Develop Your Study Plan ............................................................................................. 32 Develop a personalized study plan and schedule 6. Review Study Topics .................................................................................................... 36 Review study topics with questions for discussion 7. Review Smart Tips for Success .................................................................................... 49 Follow test-taking tips developed by experts 8. Check on Testing Accommodations ........................................................................... 51 See if you qualify for accommodations that may make it easier to take the Praxis test 9. Do Your Best on Test Day ............................................................................................. 52 Get ready for test day so you will be calm and confident 10. Understand Your Scores ............................................................................................ 54 Understand how tests are scored and how to interpret your test scores Appendix: Other Questions You May Have ................................................................... 56 The Praxis® Study Companion 4Step 1: Learn About Your Test 1. Learn About Your Test Learn about the specific test you will be taking Principles of Learning and Teaching: Grades 7–12 (5624) Test at a Glance Test Name Principles of Learning and Teaching: Grades 7–12 Test Code 5624 Time 2 hours Number of Questions 70 selected-response questions, 4 constructed-response questions Format Selected-response; constructed-response questions related to two case histories Test Delivery Computer delivered Approximate Approximate Number of Number of Approximate Selected-response Constructed- Percentage of Content Categories Questions response Questions Examination I. Students as Learners 21 22.5% I V II. Instructional Process 21 22.5% III. Assessment 14 15% IV. Professional Development, 14 15% IV II Leadership and Community III V. Analysis of Instructional 4 25% Scenarios Students as Learners 1–2 Instructional Process 1–2 Assessment 0–1 Professional Development, 0–1 Leadership and Community Pacing and In allocating time on this assessment, it is expected that about 70 minutes will be Special Tips spent on the selected-response section and about 50 minutes will be spent on the constructed-response section; the sections are not independently timed. The Praxis® Study Companion 5Step 1: Learn About Your Test 3. Understands the concepts and terms related About This Test to a variety of learning theories The purpose of this test is to assess a new teacher’s a. metacognition knowledge and understanding of educational b. schema practices foundational to beginning a career as a c. transfer d. self-efficacy professional educator. The test content assesses key e. self-regulation indicators of the beginning educator’s knowledge f. zone of proximal development of topics such as human development, learning g. classical and operant conditioning processes, instructional processes, diverse learners, educational psychology, and professional issues. 4. Knows the distinguishing characteristics of the stages in each domain of human development Examinees taking Principles of Learning and Teaching (i.e., cognitive, physical, social, and moral) (PLT) will typically have completed, or will have nearly completed, an undergraduate education program. a. describes the characteristics of a typical Each test includes questions that apply specifically to child in each stage and each domain b. recognizes typical and atypical variance the stated grade range of the test as well as some that within each stage and each domain are universal to all grade levels. 5. Understands how learning theory and human This test may contain some questions that will not development impact the instructional process count toward your score. a. defines the relationship between learning theory and human development Test Specifications b. provides examples of how learning theory is impacted by human development Test specifications in this chapter describe the c. uses knowledge of learning theory to solve knowledge and skills measured by the test. Study educational problems topics to help you prepare to answer test questions d. uses knowledge of human development to can be found in “6. Review Study Topics” on page 36. solve educational problems B. Students as Diverse Learners I. Students as Learners 1. Understands that a number of variables affect how individual students learn and perform A. Student Development and the Learning Process a. identifies a number of variables that affect how students learn and perform 1. Understands the theoretical foundations of – learning style how students learn – gender a. knows how knowledge is constructed – culture b. knows a variety of means by which skills – socioeconomic status are acquired – prior knowledge and experience c. understands a variety of cognitive – motivation processes and how they are developed – self-confidence, self-esteem 2. Knows the major contributions of foundational – cognitive development theorists to education – maturity – language a. relates the work of theorists to educational b. provides examples of how variables might contexts affect how students learn and perform – Bandura – Bruner – Dewey – Piaget – Vygotsky – Kohlberg – Bloom The Praxis® Study Companion 6 6Step 1: Learn About Your Test 2. Recognizes areas of exceptionality and their 2. Understands the implications of foundational potential impact on student learning motivation theories for instruction, learning, and classroom management a. identifies areas of exceptionality – cognitive a. defines terms related to foundational – auditory motivation theory – visual – self-determination – motor/physical – attribution – speech/language – extrinsic/intrinsic motivation – behavioral – cognitive dissonance b. explains a variety of ways exceptionalities – classic and operant conditioning may impact student learning – positive and negative reinforcement b. relates motivation theory to instruction, 3. Understands the implications and application learning, and classroom management of legislation relating to students with exceptionalities on classroom practice 3. Knows principles and strategies for classroom management a. identifies the provisions of legislation relevant to students with exceptionalities a. knows how to develop classroom routines – Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) and procedures – Individuals with Disabilities Education b. knows how to maintain accurate records Act (IDEA) c. knows how to establish standards of – Section 504, Rehabilitation Act (504) conduct b. explains how the provisions of legislation d. knows how to arrange classroom space relating to students with exceptionalities e. recognizes ways of promoting a positive affect classroom practice learning environment 4. Recognizes the traits, behaviors, and needs of 4. Knows a variety of strategies for helping intellectually gifted students students develop self-motivation 5. Recognizes that the process of English a. assigning valuable tasks language acquisition affects the educational b. providing frequent positive feedback experience of English language learners (ELLs) c. including students in instructional decisions 6. Knows a variety of approaches for d. de-emphasizing grades accommodating students with exceptionalities in each phase of the education process II. Instructional Process a. recognizes students with exceptionalities require particular accommodations A. Planning Instruction b. knows how to modify instruction, 1. Understands the role of district, state, and assessment, and communication methods national standards and frameworks in to meet a recognized need instructional planning C. Student Motivation and Learning Environment a. understands the theoretical basis of 1. Knows the major contributions of foundational standards-based education behavioral theorists to education b. knows resources for accessing district, state, and national standards and a. relates the work of behavioral theorists to frameworks educational contexts c. understands how standards and – Thorndike frameworks apply to instructional planning – Watson – Maslow – Skinner – Erikson The Praxis® Study Companion 7 7Step 1: Learn About Your Test 2. Knows how to apply the basic concepts of 6. Is aware of the need for and is able to identify predominant educational theories various resources for planning enrichment and remediation a. understands the basic concepts of cognitivism a. identifies when remediation is appropriate – schema b. identifies when enrichment is appropriate – information processing c. identifies a variety of resources for locating, – mapping adapting, or creating enrichment and b. understands the basic concepts of social remediation activities learning theory 7. Understands the role of resources and – modeling materials in supporting student learning – reciprocal determinism a. identifies and explains the uses of a variety – vicarious learning of resources and materials that support c. understands the basic concepts of student learning constructivism – computers, the Internet, and other – learning as experience electronic resources – problem-based learning – library collection (books, magazines, – zone of proximal development pamphlets, reference works) – scaffolding – videos, DVDs – inquiry/discovery learning – artifacts, models, manipulatives d. understands the basic concepts of – guest speakers and community behaviorism members – conditioning – knows how to develop lessons as part of – intrinsic and extrinsic rewards thematic and/or interdisciplinary units – reinforcement b. understands the basic concepts of – punishment thematic instruction e. knows how to apply the basic concepts of c. understands the components of thematic behaviorism, constructivism, social learning units theory, and cognitivism to instructional – selecting a theme contexts – designing integrated learning activities 3. Understands how scope and sequence affect – selecting resources instructional planning – designing assessments a. defines and provides examples of scope d. understands the basic concepts of b. defines and provides examples of interdisciplinary instruction sequence e. understands the components of c. understands the relationship between interdisciplinary units scope and sequence and standards of – collaborating learning – generating applicable topics d. understands the role of scope and – developing an integrative framework sequence in curriculum planning – planning instruction for each discipline 4. Knows how to select content to achieve lesson – designing integrative assessment and unit objectives – recognizes their role in collaborating with instructional partners in 5. Knows how to develop observable and instructional planning measurable instructional objectives in the f. identifies a variety of instructional planning cognitive, affective, and psychomotor domains partners a. distinguishes among the different learning – special education teachers domains – library media specialists b. knows how to apply Bloom’s Taxonomy to – teachers of the gifted and talented the development of instructional – IEP team members objectives – paraeducators c. knows how to describe observable g. describes the roles each partner plays in behavior collaborative activities d. knows how to describe measurable outcomes The Praxis® Study Companion 8 8Step 1: Learn About Your Test e. identifies instructional strategies associated B. Instructional Strategies with interactive instruction 1. Understands the cognitive processes – brainstorming associated with learning – cooperative learning groups a. critical thinking – interviews b. creative thinking – discussions c. questioning – peer practice d. inductive and deductive reasoning – debates e. problem solving 4. Knows a variety of strategies for encouraging f. planning complex cognitive processes g. memory a. identifies complex cognitive processes h. recall – concept learning 2. Understands the distinguishing features of – problem solving different instructional models – metacognition a. describes a variety of instructional models – critical thinking – direct – transfer – indirect b. knows instructional activities specific to the – independent development of complex cognitive – experiential processes – interactive – distinguishing fact from opinion 3. Knows a variety of instructional strategies – comparing and contrasting associated with each instructional model – detecting bias – predicting a. identifies instructional strategies associated – categorizing with direct instruction – analyzing – explicit teaching – sequencing – drill and practice – summarizing – lecture – inferring – demonstrations – decision making – guides for reading, listening, viewing – evaluating b. identifies instructional strategies associated – synthesizing with indirect instruction – generalizing – problem solving 5. Knows a variety of strategies for supporting – inquiry student learning – case studies – concept mapping a. identifies and explains uses of strategies for – reading for meaning supporting student learning – cloze procedures – modeling c. identifies instructional strategies associated – developing self-regulation skills with independent instruction – scaffolding – learning contracts – differentiating instruction – research projects – guided practice – learning centers – coaching – computer mediated instruction – distance learning d. identifies instructional strategies associated with experiential and virtual instruction – field trips – experiments – simulations – role play – games – observations The Praxis® Study Companion 9 9Step 1: Learn About Your Test 6. Knows basic strategies for promoting students’ 12. Recognizes the role of teachable moments in development of self-regulatory skills instruction a. knows how to support students in a. defines and provides examples of a – setting goals teachable moment – managing time b. understands the uses of the teachable – organizing information moment – monitoring progress C. Questioning Techniques – reflecting on outcomes 1. Knows the components of effective – establishing a productive work questioning environment – understands the design of different a. allowing think/wait time group configurations for learning b. helping students articulate their ideas b. describes different group configurations c. respecting students’ answers – whole-class d. handling incorrect answers – small-group e. encouraging participation – independent learning f. establishing a non-critical classroom – one-on-one environment – pair/share g. promoting active listening h. varying the types of questions 7. Understands the use and implications of different grouping techniques and strategies 2. Understands the uses of questioning a. explains the uses, strengths, and limitations a. explains and provides examples of different of a variety of grouping techniques purposes of questioning – cooperative learning – developing interest and motivating – collaborative learning students – heterogeneous grouping – evaluating students’ preparation – homogeneous grouping – reviewing previous lessons – multi-age grouping – helping students set realistic – grouping by gender expectations – engaging students in discussion 8. Knows how to select an appropriate strategy – determining prior knowledge for achieving an instructional objective – preparing students for what is to be 9. Understands the concept of monitoring and learned adjusting instruction in response to student – guiding thinking feedback – developing critical and creative thinking a. explains the instructional purposes of skills monitoring and adjusting instruction – checking for comprehension or level of b. knows strategies for monitoring and understanding adjusting instruction – summarizing information – stimulating students to pursue 10. Recognizes the purpose of reflecting upon, knowledge on their own analyzing, and evaluating the effectiveness of instructional strategies 3. Knows strategies for supporting students in articulating their ideas 11. Knows the characteristics of different types of memory and their implications for instructional a. explains and provides examples of planning and student learning strategies for supporting students in articulating their ideas a. distinguishes among the different types of – verbal and non-verbal prompting memory – restatement – short term – reflective listening statements – long term – wait time b. considers the characteristics and effects of memory on student learning when planning instruction The Praxis® Study Companion 10 10Step 1: Learn About Your Test 4. Knows methods for encouraging higher levels III. Assessment of thinking A. Assessment and Evaluation Strategies a. explains and provides examples of 1. Understands the role of formal and informal methods for encouraging students’ higher assessment in informing the instructional levels of thinking, thereby guiding process students to a. defines and provides uses and examples of – reflect formal and informal assessment modes – challenge assumptions b. explains a variety of ways the results of – find relationships formal and informal assessment are used to – determine relevancy and validity of make educational decisions information – design alternate solutions 2. Understands the distinctions among the – draw conclusions different types of assessment – transfer knowledge a. defines and provides uses and examples of 5. Knows strategies for promoting a safe and formative, summative, and diagnostic open forum for discussion assessment a. knows basic techniques for establishing 3. Knows how to create and select an and maintaining standards of conduct for appropriate assessment format to meet discussions instructional objectives – engaging all learners a. knows how to create assessments in a – creating a collaborative environment variety of formats – respecting diverse opinions b. is able to select an assessment format to – supporting risk taking meet a specific instructional objective D. Communication Techniques 4. Knows how to select from a variety of 1. Understands various verbal and nonverbal assessment tools to evaluate student communication modes performance a. explains and provides examples of a. knows a variety of assessment tools, their – body language uses, strengths, and limitations – gesture – rubrics – tone, stress, and inflection – analytical checklists – eye contact – scoring guides – facial expression – anecdotal notes – personal space – continuums b. is able to select an assessment tool 2. Is aware of how culture and gender can affect appropriate for quantifying the results of a communication specific assessment 3. Knows how to use various communication 5. Understands the rationale behind and the uses tools to enrich the learning environment of students’ self and peer assessment a. audio and visual aids a. defines and provides uses and examples of b. text and digital resources student self-assessment modes c. Internet and other computer-based tools b. defines and provides uses and examples of 4. Understands effective listening strategies peer assessment modes a. explains and provides examples of active c. explains the strengths and limitations of listening strategies self and peer assessment modes – attending to the speaker – restating key points – asking questions – interpreting information – providing supportive feedback – being respectful The Praxis® Study Companion 11 11Step 1: Learn About Your Test 6. Knows how to use a variety of assessment 5. Knows how to interpret assessment results and formats communicate the meaning of those results to students, parents/caregiver, and school a. describes and provides uses, strengths, and personnel limitations of a variety of assessment formats a. understands what scores and testing data – essay indicate about a student’s ability, aptitude, – selected response or performance – portfolio b. is able to explain results of assessments – conference using language appropriate for the – observation audience – performance b. is able to select an assessment format IV. Professional Development, Leadership, and appropriate to a specific educational Community context 1. Is aware of a variety of professional B. Assessment Tools development practices and resources 1. Understands the types and purposes of a. professional literature standardized tests b. professional associations a. explains the uses of the different types of c. workshops standardized tests d. conferences – achievement e. learning communities – aptitude f. graduate courses – ability g. independent research b. recognizes the data provided by the h. internships different types of standardized tests i. mentors j. study groups 2. Understands the distinction between norm- referenced and criterion-referenced scoring 2. Understands the implications of research, views, ideas, and debates on teaching a. explains the uses of norm-referenced and practices criterion-referenced tests b. explains data provided by a norm- a. knows resources for accessing research, referenced and a criterion-referenced test views, ideas, and debates on teaching practices 3. Understands terminology related to testing b. interprets data, results, and conclusions and scoring from research on teaching practices a. defines and explains terms related to c. is able to relate data, results, and testing and scoring conclusions from research and/or views, – validity ideas, and debates to a variety of – reliability educational situations – raw score 3. Recognizes the role of reflective practice for – scaled score professional growth – percentile – standard deviation a. defines the purposes of reflective practice – mean, mode, and median b. knows a variety of activities that support – grade-equivalent scores reflective practice – age-equivalent scores – reflective Journal – self and peer assessment 4. Understands the distinction between holistic – incident analysis and analytical scoring – portfolio a. describes holistic scoring and analytical – peer observation scoring – critical friend b. identifies an educational context for each The Praxis® Study Companion 12 12Step 1: Learn About Your Test 4. Is aware of school support personnel who assist students, teachers, and families a. guidance counselors b. IEP team members c. special education teachers d. speech, physical, and occupational therapists e. library media specialists f. teachers of the gifted and talented g. paraeducators 5. Understands the role of teachers and schools as educational leaders in the greater community a. role of teachers in shaping and advocating for the profession b. perceptions of teachers c. partnerships with parents and family members d. partnerships with the community 6. Knows basic strategies for developing collaborative relationships with colleagues, administrators, other school personnel, parents/caregivers, and the community to support the educational process a. knows the elements of successful collaboration – Developing an action plan – Identifying the stakeholders – Identifying the purpose of the collaboration – Supporting effective communication – Seeking support 7. Understands the implications of major legislation and court decisions relating to students and teachers a. equal access b. privacy and confidentiality c. First Amendment issues d. intellectual freedom e. mandated reporting of child neglect/abuse f. due process g. liability h. licensing and tenure i. copyright The Praxis® Study Companion 13 13Step 2: Familiarize Yourself with Test Questions 2. Familiarize Yourself with Test Questions Become comfortable with the types of questions you’ll find on the Praxis tests The Praxis Series assessments include a variety of question types: constructed response (for which you write a response of your own); selected response, for which you select one or more answers from a list of choices or make another kind of selection (e.g., by clicking on a sentence in a text or by clicking on part of a graphic); and numeric entry, for which you enter a numeric value in an answer field. You may be familiar with these question formats from taking other standardized tests. If not, familiarize yourself with them so you don’t spend time during the test figuring out how to answer them. Understanding Computer-Delivered Questions Questions on computer-delivered tests are interactive in the sense that you answer by selecting an option or entering text on the screen. If you see a format you are not familiar with, read the directions carefully. The directions always give clear instructions on how you are expected to respond. For most questions, you respond by clicking an oval to select a single answer from a list of options. However, interactive question types may also ask you to respond by: • Clicking more than one oval to select answers from a list of options. • Typing in an entry box. When the answer is a number, you may be asked to enter a numerical answer. Some questions may have more than one place to enter a response. • Clicking check boxes. You may be asked to click check boxes instead of an oval when more than one choice within a set of answers can be selected. • Clicking parts of a graphic. In some questions, you will select your answers by clicking on a location (or locations) on a graphic such as a map or chart, as opposed to choosing your answer from a list. • Clicking on sentences. In questions with reading passages, you may be asked to choose your answers by clicking on a sentence (or sentences) within the reading passage. • Dragging and dropping answer choices into targets on the screen. You may be asked to select answers from a list of options and drag your answers to the appropriate location in a table, paragraph of text or graphic. • Selecting options from a drop-down menu. You may be asked to choose answers by selecting options from a drop-down menu (e.g., to complete a sentence). Remember that with every question you will get clear instructions. Perhaps the best way to understand computer-delivered questions is to view the Computer-delivered Testing on the Praxis Web site to learn how a computer-delivered test works and see examples of Demonstration some types of questions you may encounter. The Praxis® Study Companion 14Step 2: Familiarize Yourself with Test Questions Understanding Selected-Response Questions Many selected-response questions begin with the phrase “which of the following.” Take a look at this example: Which of the following is a flavor made from beans? (A) S trawberry (B) C herry (C) V anilla (D) M int How would you answer this question? All of the answer choices are flavors. Your job is to decide which of the flavors is the one made from beans. Try following these steps to select the correct answer. 1) Limit y our answer to the choices given. You may know that chocolate and coffee are also flavors made from beans, but they are not listed. Rather than thinking of other possible answers, focus only on the choices given (“which of the following”). 2) Eliminate incorrect answers. You may know that strawberry and cherry flavors are made from fruit and that mint flavor is made from a plant. That leaves vanilla as the only possible answer. 3) Verify your answer. You can substitute “vanilla” for the phrase “which of the following” and turn the question into this statement: “Vanilla is a flavor made from beans.” This will help you be sure that your answer is correct. If you’re still uncertain, try substituting the other choices to see if they make sense. You may want to use this technique as you answer selected-response questions on the practice tests. Try a more challenging example The vanilla bean question is pretty straightforward, but you’ll find that more challenging questions have a similar structure. For example: Entries in outlines are generally arranged according to which of the following relationships of ideas? (A) Literal and inferential (B) C oncrete and abstract (C) Linear and recursive (D) M ain and subordinate You’ll notice that this example also contains the phrase “which of the following.” This phrase helps you determine that your answer will be a “relationship of ideas” from the choices provided. You are supposed to find the choice that describes how entries, or ideas, in outlines are related. Sometimes it helps to put the question in your own words. Here, you could paraphrase the question in this way: “How are outlines usually organized?” Since the ideas in outlines usually appear as main ideas and subordinate ideas, the answer is (D). The Praxis® Study Companion 15Step 2: Familiarize Yourself with Test Questions QUICK TIP: Don’t be intimidated by words you may not understand. It might be easy to be thrown by words like “recursive” or “inferential.” Read carefully to understand the question and look for an answer that fits. An outline is something you are probably familiar with and expect to teach to your students. So slow down, and use what you know. Watch out for selected-response questions containing “NOT,” “LEAST,” and “EXCEPT” This type of question asks you to select the choice that does not fit. You must be very careful because it is easy to forget that you are selecting the negative. This question type is used in situations in which there are several good solutions or ways to approach something, but also a clearly wrong way. How to approach questions about graphs, tables, or reading passages When answering questions about graphs, tables, or reading passages, provide only the information that the questions ask for. In the case of a map or graph, you might want to read the questions first, and then look at the map or graph. In the case of a long reading passage, you might want to go ahead and read the passage first, noting places you think are important, and then answer the questions. Again, the important thing is to be sure you answer the questions as they refer to the material presented. So read the questions carefully. How to approach unfamiliar formats New question formats are developed from time to time to find new ways of assessing knowledge. Tests may include audio and video components, such as a movie clip or animation, instead of a map or reading passage. Other tests may allow you to zoom in on details in a graphic or picture. Tests may also include interactive questions. These questions take advantage of technology to assess knowledge and skills in ways that standard selected-response questions cannot. If you see a format you are not familiar with, read the directions carefully. The directions always give clear instructions on how you are expected to respond. QUICK TIP: Don’t make the questions more difficult than they are. Don’t read for hidden meanings or tricks. There are no trick questions on Praxis tests. They are intended to be serious, straightforward tests of your knowledge. Understanding Constructed-Response Questions Constructed-response questions require you to demonstrate your knowledge in a subject area by creating your own response to particular topics. Essays and short-answer questions are types of constructed-response questions. For example, an essay question might present you with a topic and ask you to discuss the extent to which you agree or disagree with the opinion stated. You must support your position with specific reasons and examples from your own experience, observations, or reading. Take a look at a few sample essay topics: • “C elebrities have a tremendous influence on the young, and for that reason, they have a responsibility to act as role models.” • “ We are constantly bombarded by advertisements—on television and radio, in newspapers and magazines, on highway signs, and the sides of buses. They have become too pervasive. It’s time to put limits on advertising.” • “ Advances in computer technology have made the classroom unnecessary, since students and teachers are able to communicate with one another from computer terminals at home or at work.” The Praxis® Study Companion 16Step 2: Familiarize Yourself with Test Questions Keep these things in mind when you respond to a constructed-response question 1) A nswer the question accurately. Analyze what each part of the question is asking you to do. If the question asks you to describe or discuss, you should provide more than just a list. 2) A nswer the question completely. If a question asks you to do three distinct things in your response, you should cover all three things for the best score. Otherwise, no matter how well you write, you will not be awarded full credit. 3) Answer the question that is asked. Do not change the question or challenge the basis of the question. You will receive no credit or a low score if you answer another question or if you state, for example, that there is no possible answer. 4) G ive a thorough and detailed response. You must demonstrate that you have a thorough understanding of the subject matter. However, your response should be straightforward and not filled with unnecessary information. 5) Reread your response. Check that you have written what you thought you wrote. Be sure not to leave sentences unfinished or omit clarifying information. QUICK TIP: You may find that it helps to take notes on scratch paper so that you don’t miss any details. Then you’ll be sure to have all the information you need to answer the question. For tests that have constructed-response questions, more detailed information can be found in “Understanding Constructed-Response Questions” on page 16. The Praxis® Study Companion 17Step 3: Practice with Sample Test Questions 3. Practice with Sample Test Questions Answer practice questions and find explanations for correct answers Sample Test Questions This test is available via computer delivery. To illustrate what a computer-delivered test looks like, the following sample question shows an actual screen used in a computer-delivered test. For the purposes of this guide, sample questions are provided as they would appear in a paper-delivered test. The Praxis® Study Companion 18Step 3: Practice with Sample Test Questions 3. A high school teacher is trying to help Directions: Each of the questions or statements below is nonnative speakers of English understand an followed by four suggested answers or completions. Select English text. During the class, the teacher the one that is best in each case. asks the students to read aloud and focuses on correcting errors in pronunciation. Which 1. Which of the following is something that of the following is a principle of second- should almost always be discussed with language development that this approach fails students when they are given a type of to take into account? assignment that may be new to them? (A) For most nonnative speakers of a (A) Whether the students will be tested on language, the fastest way to learn the the material covered in the assignment language is to imitate the way native (B) Whether the assignment will be graded speakers speak it. according to the same criteria as other (B) Reading skills have to be well assignments with which the students are established before a student of a familiar language can learn a language. (C) What the students can expect to learn (C) Nonnative speakers of a language can from doing the assignment understand what they are reading before (D) What kind of prior experience the teacher they can accurately pronounce all the has had with this type of assignment sounds in the language. (D) Students should not attempt to read 2. A teacher gives his students a list of terms to aloud before they can read grade-level use in an essay and intends the list to serve texts silently with understanding. as a kind of learning support called a scaffold. If the students use the list effectively, which of 4. The concept of the placement of students in the following would be an appropriate next the least restrictive educational environment step for the teacher to take when assigning developed as a result of efforts to the students their next essay? (A) equalize educational opportunities for (A) Asking the students to come up with females and minorities their own list of terms to use in the new (B) normalize the lives of those children with assignment disabilities who were being educated in (B) Giving the students a longer list of terms isolation from their peers to use in the new assignment (C) obtain increased federal funding for the (C) Giving the students a list of terms and noneducational support of children living asking them to write down a definition of in poverty each before beginning the new (D) reduce the overall costs of educating assignment students with special needs (D) Asking the students to use the same terms in the new assignment The Praxis® Study Companion 19Step 3: Practice with Sample Test Questions 5. A tenth-grade student feels overwhelmed by 8. A teacher shares with students the following an assignment to write a term paper on an scenario and asks the class to discuss the assigned topic. The teacher’s advice is to ethical decision-making implications of the approach the task by breaking it into smaller situation. subtasks with which the student has more Bob asks his mother for 40 so that he can take experience. Which of the following activities is a trip with the school hiking club. His mother most consistent with this method? tells him that if he contributes 20 of his own money, she will contribute the other 20. A week (A) First writing on a topic that is familiar and before the trip, Bob tells his mother that he will then adding material about how this need 30 from her because he was only able to topic is related to the assignment save 10. She gives him the 30. Bob later tells (B) Preparing a bibliography of books and his younger sister that he actually had 20 but articles about the topic lied to their mother so that he could have pocket (C) Finding two sources of information on money for the trip. What should Bob’s sister do? the topic and reading each to see what A student at Kohlberg’s stage 4 of moral they have in common development would most likely say that the (D) Drafting a paper and reading it aloud to a sister should friend to determine which parts need to (A) make a deal with Bob that if he will keep be revised to be made more intelligible a secret for his sister in the future, she will not tell their mother 6. A teacher would get better information from a (B) tell their mother because the sister could criterion-referenced test than from a norm- also be punished if Bob gets caught referenced test about which of the following? (C) urge Bob to confess his action to their (A) How much each individual student has mother because he broke the rules by learned about a particular aspect of the lying, and people should never tell lies curriculum (D) encourage Bob to confess his action to (B) How each individual student’s their mother because he must be knowledge of a particular aspect of the responsible for his own behavior curriculum compares to that of students across the school district and state 9. Which of the following is most likely to be a feature of an accelerated program rather than (C) How each individual student’s a component of an enrichment activity? knowledge of a particular aspect of the curriculum compares to that of a national (A) Taking summer programs sample of students at the same age level (B) Receiving credit by exam (D) How much of what each student knows (C) Doing simulations and playing games about a particular aspect of the (D) Completing independent projects curriculum is based on prior knowledge 10. Which of the following descriptors best characterizes creativity? 7. Which of the following is best for a teacher to do when establishing classroom rules? (A) The student’s ideas are generated in spurts, few of which tend to be relevant (A) Mention the rules once at the beginning to solving a specific problem. of the school year (B) The student’s solutions are generally (B) State the rules in a forceful way to based on established perspectives or establish authority frameworks. (C) Explain why the established rules are (C) The student’s solutions prove viable, necessary for enhancing student although they give the initial appearance cooperation of novelty. (D) Create as many rules as possible to (D) The student’s abilities typically apply guarantee order and control in the uniformly across all learning domains, classroom not just one. The Praxis® Study Companion 20

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