NES Tests in New Mexico

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National Evaluation Series (NES) Tests Used in New Mexico

New Mexico uses NES tests, as well as other state-approved tests, to certify many educational professionals, including teachers and counselors. This article features the main NES tests used by New Mexico for different age groups, subject areas and specializations.

Essential Academic Skills

The Essential Academics Skills subtests must be passed to teach students of all age groups from birth through grade 12. They are also part of the evaluation process for special education teachers. There are 3 Early Academic Skills evaluation tests used to assess the examinee's reading, writing and mathematics skills and knowledge. The tests vary from an hour to 1 hour and 15 minutes and can each be taken separately or together. All testing requirements for age groups and subject areas are in addition to the Essential Academic Skills testing requirements.

Early Childhood Educators

There are two age groups for early childhood education certification in New Mexico. Individuals can opt to pursue their credentials to work with children from birth through 3 years of age. It's also an option to pursue certification to work with children who are 3 to 8 years old.

Those who plan to work with infants and toddlers must also take the NES Early Childhood Education (Birth-Prekindergarten) test, which takes 1 hour and 45 minutes and contains 80 questions. Those who plan to work with children ages 3 through 8 must pass the 2-hour 100-question NES Early Childhood Education (Age 3-Age 8) exam.

Elementary School Teachers

New Mexico elementary school teachers are certified to work with students in kindergarten through grade 8. The 3-hour 102-question Assessment of Professional Knowledge: Elementary test is one of the NES tests used to qualify aspiring elementary teachers. The certification process also involves taking the Elementary Education Subtests I and II, which both have 75 questions. The first subtest is allotted 1 hour and 30 minutes while the second subtest is allotted 1 hour and 45 minutes.

The Essential Components of Elementary Reading Instruction test is a 3-hour 150-question exam which must also be passed in order to become an elementary school teacher in New Mexico.

Middle School Teachers

Middle school teachers must pass an Assessment of Professional Knowledge exam. They can choose between taking the Assessment of Professional Knowledge for elementary or secondary grade levels.

They are also required to take a Content Knowledge Assessment. The NES offers the following subject areas:

English to Speakers of Other Languages (ESOL) Art
Family and Consumer Sciences Health
Middle Grades English Language Arts Spanish
Middle Grades General Science Music
Middle Grades Mathematics French
Middle Grades Social Science German
School Library Media Specialist
Physical Education

Fulfilling the middle school teacher certification requirements qualifies teachers to work with students in grades 5 through 9.

Secondary School Teachers

The Assessment of Professional Knowledge: Secondary test takes 3 hours and contains 102 questions. It is one of the tests that must be passed in order to teach high school in New Mexico. High school teachers are certified to teach grades 7 through 12.

Aspiring secondary school teachers are also required to take a Content Knowledge Assessment for certification. The NES offers the following subjects:

Art English Language Arts
French English to Speakers of Other Languages (ESOL)
Family and Consumer Sciences Health
Mathematics Spanish
Science German
Social Science Music
School Library Media Specialist
Physical Education

Subject-Area Certification for PreK to Grade 12

There are a number of specialized subject areas that teachers can be qualified to instruct at all grade levels from PreK through grade 12.

Like middle school teachers, these teachers can choose between taking the Assessment of Professional Knowledge test for elementary or secondary grades.They are also expected to pass a Content Knowledge Assessment test for the subject they will teach. Subject-area certification for PreK to grade 12 can be earned by passing a Content Knowledge Assessment. The NES offers the following assessments for PreK-12:

Art Family and Consumer Sciences
English to Speakers of Other Languages (ESOL) French
German Middle Grades English Language Arts
Health Middle Grades Mathematics
Middle Grades Social Science Music
Middle Grades General Science Spanish
Physical Education
School Library Media Specialist

All of the Content Knowledge Assessments typically take 3-5 hours to complete and include 102 or 150 questions.

Special Education Teachers

Special education teachers are certified to work with special education students in PreK through grade 12. They can opt between the elementary or secondary Assessment of Professional Knowledge test when completing their certification requirements.

They must also take the 3-hour 150-question Content Knowledge Assessment in Special Education test.

School Counselor

School Counselors in New Mexico must take the Content Knowledge Assessment for School Counselor. Examinees pursuing this certification do not need to take the Essential Academic Skills test as part of their certification process.

Study Resources

Using practice tests and online study guides can help you prepare appropriately for your NES tests. Study.com offers an extensive library of NES Courses that can help you along the way. Here are a few examples from the course library:

What is the NES Test?

NES stands for National Evaluation Series and refers to a group of teacher certification exams. Keep reading for more information on the different types of tests available and learn where and when you can take them.

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