Which Tests Do I Need to Enter an Undergraduate Education Program?

Pennsylvania regulations require that those seeking an educator credential must demonstrate that they have successfully completed testing in the following areas:

    1. Basic skills in Reading, Writing, Mathematics, taken for entry into an undergraduate educator-preparation program*
    2. Specialty Area Tests, taken during the semester before or early in the semester of student teaching
      • Pennsylvania Educator Certification Tests (PECT) Specialty Area testing is required for:
        • PK-4 Early Childhood Education
        • Special Education PK-8 
        • Special Education 7-12
      • Praxis II Specialty Area testing is required for all other areas of certification not listed as PECT

    *Candidates who began their teacher preparation program as an undergraduate and are now completing the program at the post-baccalaureate level MUST take and pass the Basic Skills test prior to being granted certification.  EXEMPTION: Candidates pursuing an advanced degree, i.e. Master's or Doctoral, do NOT take entrance tests of basic skills in reading, writing, and mathematics for PA certification.

    All candidates for certification must meet the qualifying score for all applicable tests at the time their application for certification is received by the Pennsylvania Department of Education (PDE.) Students must review and be familiar with the current policies of the Pennsylvania Department of Education.

    The Pennsylvania Department of Education will recognize subject area scores for ten years from the date of test administration. Passing pre-service Reading, Writing, and Mathematics test scores do not expire.

    PDE requires OFFICIAL test scores.  If you test in Pennsylvania, your scores are automatically reported to PDE.  If you test OUTSIDE OF PENNSYLVANIA, you must select the PA Dept of Educ as a score recipient when you register to take the test.

    Which Tests Do I Take to Enter my Program?

    Undergraduate students may not enter a teacher certification program, and can NOT take upper-level education courses, unless or until they pass basic skills assessment. The basic skills assessment is comprised of three individual tests on reading, writing, and mathematics.

    PDE Basic Skills Test Options

    You may combine reading, writing and mathematics module scores from different test providers to meet the basic skills requirements.

    You may use the composite score method to meet the requirement when you do well in one or two areas to compensate for a lower score in the other area. The composite score is the sum of the passing scores. 

    To pass by the new composite score option, students must:

    1. Achieve no less than the minimum composite score on each of the three tests used
    2. Add up the three required passing scores for the tests being used
    3. Achieve a total score that adds up to no less than the sum of the required passing scores calculated in step 2.

    Use the PA Department of Education's Composite Score Calculator when mixing tests.  Note When using the composite score, each test must meet or exceed the minimum score listed. 

    I.  ACT

    Test Registration Link:

    ACT

     

    Test Name

    Section

    Passing Score

    Minimum Composite Score

    ACT – after August 31, 2015

     

     

     

      Reading

    22

    20

     

      Writing

    21

    17

     

      Writing after Sept. 2016

    8

    7

     

      Mathematics

    21

    19

    Composite ACT Test Score:

    Sept 2015-Aug 2016:

    September 2016 and later:

     

     

    64

    51

     

    II. CORE Academic

    Test Registration Link:

    ETS

     

    CORE Test Option Effective 6/1/2014 for non-vocational certifications

    Test Number

    Passing Score

    Minimum Composite Score

      Reading

    5712

    156

    148

      Mathematics

    5732

    142

    132

      Writing

    5722

    162

    158

     

    Composite CORE Test Score:

    460

     

    III. PAPA

    Test Registration Link:

    ES Pearson

     

    Test Name

    Test Number

    Passing Score

    Minimum Composite Score

      Reading

    8001

    220

    193

      Mathematics

    8002

    193

    176*

      Writing

    8003

    220

    192

     

    Composite PAPA Test Score:

    633

     

      *We will accept 174 from candidates accepted into an educator certification program

      prior to 8/31/2016

     

     

     

    IV.  SAT

    Test Registration Link:

    College Board

     

    Test Date

    Test

    Passing Score

    Minimum Composite Score

      SAT  – prior to March 1, 2016

     

     

     

      Critical Reading

    500

     

     

      Mathematics

    500

     

     

      Writing

    500

     

     

    Composite SAT Test Score:

    1500

     

     

     

      SAT - after February 29, 2016

      Reading

    27

    25

     

      Mathematics

    26

    24

     

      Writing and Language

    28

    26

     

    Composite SAT Test Score:

    81

     

     V. PPST (Praxis I)*

     

     

     

    Test Name

    Test Number

    Passing Score

    Minimum Composite Score

    PPST or Computerized PPST Reading

    0710 or 5710

    172

    169

    PPST or Computerized PPST Writing

    0720 or 5720

    173

    170

    PPST or Computerized PPST Mathematics

    0730 or 5730

    173

    170

     

    Composite PPST Test Score:

    518

     

     *Test Series Must be Started Prior to 12/31/2012

     

     

    Which Tests Do I Take for My Specialty Area Toward the End of My Program?

    World Language French and Spanish candidates have the option of taking either the PRAXIS or the ACTFL test.

    Praxis tests are computer tests, offered by appointment. See www.ets.org/praxis.

    Marywood University does not participate in the Pennsylvania Department of Education program that uses GPA to determine a test's passing score. Qualifying scores shown in the following tables must be achieved.

    Grades PK to 12 Areas Take Praxis II Specialty Area Tests

    Certification Area Test Code* Praxis Test Name Qualifying Score
    Art PK-12 5511  and  Fundamental Subjects: Content Knowledge and 150
    5134 Art Content Knowledge 158
    Family/Consumer Science PK-12 5511  and  Fundamental Subjects Content Knowledge and 150
    5122 Family & Consumer Sciences 153
    French PK-12 5511  and Fundamental Subjects Content Knowledge and 150
    5174 World Languages: French 162
    Health & Physical Ed PK-12 5511  and Fundamental Subjects Content Knowledge and 150
    5857 Health & Physical Ed: Content Knowledge 160
    Library Science PK-12 5511  and Fundamental Subjects Content Knowledge and 150
    5311 Library Media Specialist 151
    Music PK-12 5511  and Fundamental Subjects Content Knowledge and 150
    5113 Music Content Knowledge (contains listening section) 158
    Reading Specialist PK-12 5511  and Fundamental Subjects Content Knowledge and 150
    5301 Reading Specialist 164
    Spanish PK-12   5511  and Fundamental Subjects Content Knowledge  and 150
    5195 World Languages: Spanish 168
    Speech & Lang Impaired PK-12 5511 and Fundamental Subjects Content Knowledge  and 150
    5331  Speech Language and Pathology 162
           

    Grades 7 to 12 Areas Take Praxis II Specialty Area Tests

    Certification Area Test Code* Praxis Test NameQualifying Score
    Biology 7-12 5235 Biology: Content Knowledge (calculators prohibited) 147
    Communication 7-12 5221 Speech Communication: Content Knowledge 145
    English 7-12 5038 English Language Arts: Content Knowledge 167
    General Science 7-12 5435 General Science: Content Knowledge 146
    Mathematics 7-12 5161 Mathematics: Content Knowledge 160
    SocialStudies 7-12 5081 Social Studies: Content Knowledge 157

    Grades 4-8 Take Praxis II Specialty Area Tests

    Certification Area Test Code Praxis Test Name Qualifying Score
    Grades 4-8 5152, consisting of: Pennsylvania Grades 4-8 Core Assessment, consisting of 3 sub-tests:  
      5153 Pedagogy Subtest 162
      5154 English Language Arts and Social Studies Subtest 152
      5155 Mathematics and Science Subtest 164
    and two of:
      5156 Concentration English Language Arts 156
      5157 Concentration Social Studies 150
      5158 Concentration Mathematics 173
      5159 Concentration Science 156

    PK-4 and Special Ed Areas Take PECT* Specialty Area Tests

    Certification Area PECT Test Name Cut (Passing) Score
    Grades PK-4 PreK–4

    220

    In an interim policy issued on May 29, 2014, the Pennsylvania Department of Education has lowered the passing score requirement for the PreK-4 Module tests, applied retroactively, as follows:

    PreK-4 Module 1 (8006):    197

    PreK-4 Module 2 (8007):    193

    PreK-4 Module 3 (8008):    193

    Special Education PreK-8 Special Education PreK–8

    Special Ed PreK-8 Module 1 (8011):  220

    Special Ed PreK-8 Module 2 (8012):  220

    Special Education 7-12 Special Education 7–12

    Special Ed 7-12 Module 1 (8015):  220

    Special Ed 7-12 Module 2 (8016):  220

     

    *Pennsylvania Educator Certification Tests (PECT) are administered by Pearson Evaluations Systems. See www.pa.nesinc.com.

    Educational Specialist Areas*

    Certification Area Test Code Praxis Test Name Qualifying Score
    Home and School Visitor K-12 n/a No specialty test required n/a
    School Counselor K-6 or 7-12
    5421
    Professional School Counselor 156
    School Psychologist K-12 5401 School Psychologist   150
           

    *Note: Educational Specialist candidates with a baccalaureate degree who hold a current and valid Pennsylvania license as a registered psychologist, counselor, or social worker and can provide a copy of this Pennsylvania license as part of their application for the related Pennsylvania Educational Specialist certification area are not required to take any tests to receive the related certificate.

    Supervisory And Administration Areas 

    Certification Area Test Code Praxis Test Name Qualifying Score
    Curriculum &  Instruction Supervisor 5411
    Educational Leadership: Administration & Supervision 143
    Instructional Tech Specialist Supervisor 5411 Educational Leadership: Administration & Supervision 143
    Pupil Personnel Services Supervisor 5411 Educational Leadership: Administration & Supervision 143
    Reading Supervisor 5411 Educational Leadership: Administration & Supervision 143
    Special Education Supervisor 5411 Educational Leadership: Administration & Supervision 143
    Principal K-12

    6011

    School Leadership Licensure Assessment - SLLA 163
    Superintendent Letter of Eligibility 6021 School Superintendent Assessment - SSA 160

    For updates, visit the Pennsylvania Department of Education’s web site. Click on "Teachers" and then on "Testing Requirements."