The Three Things You MUST Know to Pass the PRAXIS CORE
November 15, 2017
Passing the PRAXIS CORE can seem like a daunting task – but once you know what to study, the test becomes a lot less scary and a lot more fun. Wait… the PRAXIS CORE can be fun? Of course! We’d like to think all learning is fun – we want to be teachers, remember?!
When you study for the PRAXIS CORE, there are three main things you HAVE to know. To pass the test, you should review these skills, master them completely, and then review the study topics again to assess your PRAXIS CORE preparedness. Teach.com has an incredibly exhaustive resource, The Ultimate Guide to the Praxis Exam , that is designed to help you learn the ins and outs of the exam – and how to ace it!
Once you have mastered each of these foundational skills, you can move to more advanced concepts. But if you aren’t confident in these areas it’s hard to build on what you don’t know. This is ground zero – where you NEED to start studying.
1.) Basic Mathematical Formulas
The math section of the PRAXIS CORE covers five basic mathematical formulas: slope-intercept form, Pythagorean Theorem, perimeter, area, and volume of basic shapes (rectangles, circles, cylinders, prisms).
You need to be comfortable with each of these formulas, and know how to use them in different situations. The best thing to do is work through practice questions that target those specific concepts.
The PRAXIS CORE doesn’t take mathematical concepts beyond the middle school level, so you don’t have to worry about knowing Calculus or Trigonometry. As long as you are comfortable with basic Algebra at the middle school level you should be equipped with the math skills you need to pass.
2.) Constructed Response Answers
Knowing how to write a constructed response answer benefits you in two key areas. First, and most importantly, the writing portion of the PRAXIS CORE requires you to write an essay, which is an easier word for constructed response. Second, being able to create a well-written constructed response allows you to better identify the purpose, theme, and content of other writing, which is useful in the reading portion of the PRAXIS CORE.
Learning how to write a basic essay is not complicated. Simply google “How to Write a Constructed Response Answer,” and you can find several How To resources on the subject.
If a constructed response essay is at an elementary skill level, argumentative and source-based essays are its older, smarter siblings. These essays are more specific with more detailed requirements, but knowing about them can improve your writing and comprehension tremendously.
An argumentative essay requires you to create and support an argument that the essay prompt presents to you. A source-based essay requires you to respond to an essay prompt where you must use, or refer, to the sources referenced in the prompt.
3.) Fundamental Grammar
The writing portion of the PRAXIS CORE requires you to evaluate the grammar of a writing sample and make corrections, if necessary. Knowing the fundamentals of grammar is essential to choosing the right answers and passing the test.
When you study for the PRAXIS CORE, make sure you are reviewing the fundamental rules and requirements of grammar. These include understanding nouns, verbs, adjectives, adverbs, pronouns and prepositions and the roles they play in a sentence’s structure. You also need to know about the mechanics of a sentence; correct spelling, punctuation and capitalization.
So, to recap – knowing basic mathematical formulas, crafting constructed responses, and understanding grammar and mechanics are foundational to passing the PRAXIS CORE. Mastering these three key skills will help set you up for success in taking your exam.
Knowledge is power, and knowing the PRAXIS CORE fundamentals you need to pass is a great start. To gain even more knowledge and confidence in passing your exam, check out the resources and free practice tests here