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Praxis Writing Test Tips

 
Multiple Choice Section:
    • Computer based: 38 minutes, 44 multiple choice questions
    • Written: 30 minutes, 38 questions
 
  • Read all the answers before you choose the correct one.  Sometimes the answers have errors that point you to the correct response. First, eliminate the answer or answers you know are wrong.
  • Be sure to read the sentence carefully.  If necessary point to every word as you read.  Sometimes the error in the sentence is the misuse or absence of a single word.
  • Do not rely on whether a sentence “sounds wrong.”  Some constructions written correctly “sound wrong” because they are so frequently misused in written and spoken language.  Example: “This is she” not “This is her.”
  • Don’t change your initial answer unless you have a good reason to do so; research indicates that 3 out of 4 times a first choice was probably correct.
  • If you’re sure the sentence is correct, choose “no error.” Twenty percent of the sample problems contain either no error, an error in idiom and/or word usage, or an error in mechanics.
  • Section B, Sentence Correction, is the more difficult and time consuming of the two multiple choice sections.  Allow yourself enough time to finish Section B.  Some suggest doing Section B first.
  • Look for wordiness.  If one of the responses says the same thing in fewer words, it is probably the correct answer.  Example: John Smith, a teacher and educator,…..

 

Written Essay Section:  30 minutes, one single question worth 50% of writing score

  • Read the question carefully to make sure you understand what the question is asking.  Usually, the questions have two parts and ask you to express an opinion.  Review the possible questions from Test at a Glance.
  • Before you begin, make yourself a plan—a scratch outline, so you know what you want to say and the order in which you want to say it.
  • Pay attention to the structure of your essay. Be sure you have a beginning, middle, and end: an introduction, 2-3 body paragraphs, and a conclusion.
  • Be sure the introduction has a thesis statement that takes a position (questions often ask you to take a position) and/or previews the key topics of your essay.
  • Keep your audience in mind! Say what you think a teacher should say and back it up with good reasoning.
  • Support your key points with specific examples, facts, details, or reasoning.
  • Be sure you don’t have any sentence fragments (incomplete) or run-on sentences (more than one sentence joined by a comma or without punctuation).
  • Concentrate on quality and development.  The amount you write is important, but how well you write is even more important.
  • Think about alternatives for words you’re not sure how to spell.  Avoid using words you are not sure how to spell.
  • Leave yourself some time at the end to read over what you have written.
  • If you are handwriting the essay, try to write as neatly as possible