part of the New York State Teachers Certification Exam, education
students and other candidates must take a two tier exam.
One part involves a general liberal arts knowledge test covering
topics across most college curriculum (math, history, literature,
communication, science, and the arts). The other part,
and the focus of this web page, involves both reading, writing,
and critical argumentation. In other words, candidates
must write an essay in which they synthesize the sides of
a given issue, develop a critical assessment, and offer their
own resolution or response to the issue.
most standardized writing exams, the essay is evaluated by
readers (other teachers or college professors) who score the
essay holistically; that is, the readers give a general score
based on a set of criteria that usually focus on the efficacy
of the essay's understanding of the issue, on the development
of a coherent response, and on the production of quality prose
(or sentence-level writing). Some weakness in any one area
likely will not result in a non-passing result (a score below
220), but some weakness in a number of areas or great weakness
in one area can doom a score. Thus, the upshot is a
winning essay indicates an understanding of the issue, signals
critical awareness, and uses markers of effective writing.
most candidates, spending between one and one half to two
hours writing the essay usually ensures enough time to write
the essay, to compose a sufficient amount of thought, and
to edit/proofread the prose or writing.
to this page, we have included one possible approach to writing
the essay. It is by no means the only approach or the
best approach or the perfect approach. If you have strategies
that work well for you, especially for which you receive a
passing score, please pass them along to us. We
invite your comments.
LIU students, we invite you to practice composing your essay
and receive tutoring from our E-Tutoring
information regarding test registration, administration procedures,
admission tickets, or score reports, contact:
National Evaluation Systems Inc.
30 Gatehouse Road
P.O. Box 660
Amherst, MA 01004-9008