What is the WEST-B Test?

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About the WEST-B Test

The Washington Professional Educator Standards Board (PESB) created the Washington Educator Skills Test - Basic (WEST-B). The WEST-B is designed to ensure that individuals entering postsecondary education preparation programs have the academic skills required to succeed in those programs. The test is also used to qualify teacher certification applicants from out of state to teach in Washington.

Test Content and Format

There are 3 subtests on the WEST-B exam. They assess a test-taker's skills and knowledge in reading, writing and mathematics. Test-takers must earn 240 on each of the 3 subtests to pass.

Reading Subtest: The objective of this part of the exam is to ensure that individuals are capable of understanding and analyzing written information. Test-takers receive 2 hours to answer 60 multiple-choice questions.

Writing Subtest: The writing subtest is the longest exam, offering test-takers 3 hours to complete 2 constructed-response questions and 50 multiple-choice questions. The goal is to ensure that individuals can construct and revise written texts that conform to standard English language rules.

Mathematics Subtest: The mathematics subtest is used to determine if a test-taker understands mathematical principles and is capable of performing mathematical operations that involve measurement, geometry, algebra and statistics. Like the reading subtest, the mathematics subtest has 60 multiple-choice questions. Test-takers receive 2 hours to complete them.

Test Alternatives for Postsecondary Students

Individuals who are preparing to enter postsecondary education training programs may be able to substitute standardized test scores and be exempt from taking the WEST-B. The qualifying ACT and SAT scores are as follows:

Test Reading Score Mathematics Score Writing Score
ACT 22 22 8
SAT 27 27.5 28

Test Alternatives for Teachers Certified in Other States

Passing scores on other standardized tests can be used by out-of-state certification applicants to fulfill the WEST-B requirement. National test options include:

Test Reading Score Mathematics Score Writing Score
Praxis I 325 321 321
Praxis Core 156 142 158
NES - Essential Skills Assessment 220 220 220

Passing scores on the following state tests may also be used to fulfill the WEST-B requirement:

  • California - California Basic Educator Skills Test (CBEST)
  • Florida - FTCE General Knowledge Test (GK)
  • Georgia - GACE Program Admission Assessment
  • Illinois - ILTS Test of Academic Proficiency (TAP)
  • Indiana - Indiana Core Academic Skills Assessment (CASA)
  • Massachusetts - MTEL Communication and Literacy Skills
  • Michigan - MTTC Professional Readiness Examination
  • Minnesota - Minnesota NES Essential Academic Skills or MTLE Basic Skills - Reading, Writing, and Mathematics
  • Missouri - Missouri General Education Assessment (MoGEA)
  • New York - NYSTCE Academic Literacy Skills Test (ALST)
  • Oklahoma - CEOE Oklahoma General Education Test (OGET)
  • Pennsylvania - PECT Pre-Service Academic Performance Assessment (PAPA)
  • Texas - Texas Higher Education Assessment (THEA)
  • Virginia - Virginia Communication and Literacy Assessment (VCLA)

WEST-B Test Resources

If you need to pass the WEST-B test to get into a teacher training program or meet certification requirements for out-of-state applicants, it is important to study the material the test covers before your exam date. With 180 short lessons that you can work through at your own pace, the WEST-B Reading, Writing and Mathematics: Practice & Study Guide is a comprehensive resource that can help ensure you're ready for your exam.

When you're ready to sit for the state's endorsement tests, you can also find a collection of WEST-E Courses designed to help you study for a variety of subject tests at the elementary, middle and secondary school levels.

Continue reading: What is the WEST-E Test?

Planning to take one of the Washington Educator Skills Tests (WEST)? Study.com now offers three WEST scholarships for prospective teachers preparing for their exams.

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