What Is Praxis?

Praxis Testing Overview & Guide

What is the Praxis test? Praxis, administered by ETS (Educational Testing Service), consists of two exam sets taken by aspiring educators:

  • Praxis Core test (formerly Praxis I) - consisting of 3 subtests in core knowledge areas: Reading, Writing, & Math. Praxis Core exams can be taken separately, or as a combined test.
  • Praxis Subject Assessments (formerly Praxis II) - consisting of over 90 tests, each measuring knowledge in a specific subject area.

Some colleges and universities require Praxis Core exams as part of admission to teaching programs. Certain U.S. states and territories also require Praxis Core or one or more Subject Assessments to license or certify educators. Praxis exams are generally computer-administered and can be offered either continuously throughout the year or during certain windows, depending on the test.

Unsure which Praxis exams you need to take? Follow these steps:

1. Look up local requirements. Find out which exams your school or local licensing authority requires.

2. Make a list. Record whether you need to take Praxis Core, Praxis Subject Assessments, or both.

3. Check with ETS. Make sure the exams you have identified are offered by ETS under those, or similar, names.

4. Understand the timeline. Some schools require Praxis Core prior to beginning the program. Some licensing authorities require Praxis Subject assessments prior to licensing. When do you need to take which exams?

5. Verify with your local authority. If you notice timing discrepancies or different test names, follow up with your school or supervisor to clarify the latest up-to-date information.

What is Praxis Core?

The Praxis Core exam is most often taken early on in a teacher candidate's college career, as it is required by a number of teacher training programs. Praxis Core is also common among state licensing requirements for educators.

The exam is broken down into three parts, which can be taken together as a single 5-hour exam or as three individual 2-hour exams on separate days. It should be noted that the Praxis tests are only administered in English. Non-native English speakers may qualify for extended exam times.

Praxis Core Question Types

Praxis Core exams contain three question types:

  • Selected response - choose an answer from multiple choice responses
  • Constructed response - create a written response (essay format)
  • Numeric entry - input a number in the space provided


Praxis Core Reading Subtest

This subtest assesses candidate proficiency in reading comprehension and analysis for a variety of texts and document types. Examinees will have 85 minutes to read and respond to passage-based questions.

Test Name Number of Questions Question Format Test Length
Praxis Core Reading (5712) 56 Selected Response (multiple choice) 85 mins.


Praxis Core Writing Subtest

The writing test is divided into two parts. The first section, for which test takers are given 40 minutes, addresses proofreading and revision skills, as well as knowledge of different research methods. The second section, which is 60 minutes long, allows test takers to demonstrate competency with both expository and persuasive writing.

Test Name Number of Questions Question Format Test Length
Praxis Core Writing (5722) 40

2
Selected Response

Constructed Response (Essay Format)
100 mins


Praxis Core Math Subtest

The Praxis Math subtest is intended to assess proficiency in mathematical reasoning, rather than arithmetic skills. There are Praxis Subject Assessments dedicated to specific types of math; this subtest is intended to assess a base level of math proficiency, not subject expertise.

The old Praxis Core Mathematics Exam (5732) will be administered until August 2020. The new Praxis Core Mathematics Exam (5733) has been administered since September 2019 and will later completely replace the old mathematics exam.

Test Name Number of Questions Question Format Test Length
Praxis Core Mathematics (5732, 5733) 56 Selected Response / Numeric Entry 90 mins


How to Register for Praxis Core

Praxis Core Exams are offered continuously throughout the year; consult ETS to find local testing centers. Registration fees for the combined test total $150, while registration for individual subtests is $90 each.

Praxis registration is available:

  • Online
  • By Mail
  • Over the Phone

Learn more about Praxis registration methods, plus Praxis accommodations for those with disabilities.

Preparing for the Core Exam

Study.com offers comprehensive, self-paced study guides and practice exams for each section of the Core exam. Bite-size video and text lessons make learning fast and approachable. Courses include quizzes between every lesson to boost retention, and practice tests with score reporting to help target topic areas of strength & weakness.

What are Praxis Subject Assessments?

The Praxis Subject Assessments include exams on more than 90 different subjects, specialties, and techniques for teaching K-12 students. These exams are usually taken at the conclusion of a teacher-training program. Required exams depend on a test-taker's desired teaching path, as well as their state's licensing requirements.

There are two sub-categories of subject assessments: regular Subject Assessments, which test general and specific subject knowledge and teaching skills, and Principles of Learning & Teaching (PLT) tests, which assess general teaching knowledge for grade level groupings.

Type Content Question Types Test Length
Subject Assessments General and specific subject knowledge and teaching skills Selected Response (Multiple Choice)
Constructed Response (Essay)
1-4 hours, depending the individual test
Principles of Learning & Teaching (PLT) Tests General teaching knowledge for grade level groupings:
Early childhood
K-6
5-9
7-12
Selected Response (Multiple Choice)
Constructed Response (Essay) based on provided case studies
1-4 hours, depending the individual test


Praxis Subject Assessment tests range in length from 1 to 4 hours, depending on the exam, although most are around 2 hours and roughly 120 questions. Below are some examples of subject assessment tests, including their format and length:

Exam Number of Questions Question Formats Time Given
Mathematics Content Knowledge (5161) 60 Selected Response
Numeric Entry
2.5 hours
Social Studies Content Knowledge (5081) 130 Selected Response 2 hours
English Language Arts: Content and Analysis (5039) 130
2
Selected Response
Constructed Response
3 hours
PLT Grades 7-12 (5624) 70
4
Selected Response
Constructed Response
2 hours
PLT Grades K-6 (5622) 70
4
Selected Response
Constructed Response
2 hours
Algebra (5162) 60 Selected Response
Numeric Entry
2.5 hours
Biology (5235) 150 Selected Response 2 hours
Chemistry (5245) 125 Selected Response 2.5 hours
Early Childhood Education (5025) 120 Selected Response 2 hours


How to Register for Praxis Subject Assessments

Some Subject Assessments are offered continuously throughout the year, while others are offered only during specific testing windows. Consult a Praxis Test Dates resource to find out how often your desired exams are offered. Registration fees vary depending on which subject assessments you are registering for, but can be between $50 and $199. Consult ETS to find the exact fees for the Subject Assessments you plan to take.

Praxis registration is available:

  • Online
  • By Mail
  • Over the Phone

Learn more about Praxis registration methods, plus Praxis accommodations for those with disabilities.

How to Pass the Praxis

To ensure you have the highest chance of success, prepare for your Praxis Exams using these steps:

1. Find your exam(s). Check with your state, education program, or licensing organization to determine which Praxis Subject Assessment exam(s) you need to take.

2. Get to know your test. Become familiar with your Praxis exam content, question types, and test length.

3. Organize your study habits. Design a study plan that works for your schedule and covers all exam material. Plan out study intervals and create a daily or weekly routine to maintain consistent progress.

4. Use the right tools. Use Praxis study guides to review material that may be covered on your exam. Praxis practice tests can help you identify strengths, weaknesses and gaps in your knowledge, allowing you to allocate your study time appropriately. Taking multiple practice exams throughout your preparation process can help you track your progress and refocus your study plan as necessary to ensure that you are fully prepared.

How Does Praxis Scoring Work?

The scaled range of possible scores for most Praxis Core Academic Skills and Subject Assessment exams is between 100 - 200 points. Each state that uses Praxis tests determines its own passing score threshold. Learn more about Praxis Score Requirements, including state-by-state information.

Praxis Core Study Guides & Test Info

Everything you need to know about the Praxis Core Academic Skills for Educators test series, formerly Praxis I.

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