TExES Core Subjects EC-6: ELAR Practice Test

TExES Core Subjects EC-6: ELAR Exam

The TExES Core Subjects EC-6: English Language Arts and Reading (ELAR) Exam (901) is one of the five subtests of the TExES Core Subjects EC-6 (391) exam. Passing the entire TExES Core Subjects EC-6 exam is a requirement for aspiring teachers who would like to become certified to teach early childhood up to 6th grade in the state of Texas. It shows that the aspiring teacher has the knowledge and skills to meet the demands of the classroom in five different subject areas: English Language Arts and Reading, Mathematics, Social Studies, Science, and Fine Arts, Health, and Physical Education. Although the entire exam is a requirement for TExES teacher certification, aspiring teachers might find themselves having to study specifically for the ELAR portion of the exam.

The TExES Core Subjects EC-6: ELAR (901) exam is administered by the Texas Educator Certification Examination Program. Aspiring teachers can visit their website for TExES registration, and exams are available any time of year. The TExES Core Subjects EC-6: ELAR exam is computer-administered (CAT), contains 45 total selected-response questions, and test-takers are given 70 minutes to complete it. Selected response means that the test-taker picks the correct answer from multiple options and does not need to generate an answer or do any writing. Most questions will be in a multiple-choice format, and there will be some questions where test-takers will need to drag and drop words, sentences, or images or select parts of a sentence or image.

It's important to note that Texas now requires the Science of Teaching Reading (STR) Exam for all aspiring educators who plan to teach in PreK-6 classrooms.

Practice tests give you a better idea of the topics you have mastered and those you should keep studying.

TExES Core Subjects EC-6: ELAR Exam Competencies

The TExES Core Subjects EC-6: ELAR exam is designed to cover a wide range of skills that early childhood through 6th-grade teachers need to teach reading and writing to young learners effectively. The exam focuses on ten competencies:

  1. Oral language
  2. Word Analysis and Identification Skills
  3. Reading Fluency
  4. Reading Comprehension and Applications
  5. Vocabulary Development
  6. Reading, Inquiry, and Research
  7. Writing Conventions
  8. Written Communication
  9. Viewing and Representing
  10. Assessment of Developing Literacy

Oral Language

Oral language is the first competency that the TExES Core Subjects EC-6 ELAR measures. This competency looks at the degree to which future teachers are aware of the importance of teaching oral language and whether they know how this skill develops in young learners. Finally, test takers are asked about the diverse activities and tools they would use in the classroom to help students succeed in their oral language abilities practically.

Word Analysis and Identification Skills

This competency measures an aspiring teacher's knowledge and application in a wide range of skills required for reading comprehension. These skills include phonetic awareness, high-frequency word recognition, use of synonyms, decoding more complex sound and letter combinations (e.g., prefixes), and use of the dictionary for the higher grades. It also tests an aspiring teacher's ability to deal with varying reading levels within the classroom, choose appropriate materials and activities, and communicate appropriately with parents about their child's reading comprehension level.

Reading Fluency

For this competency, aspiring teachers are asked to demonstrate their understanding of the connection between reading fluency and its skills, including reading comprehension, rate, prosody, accuracy, intonation and word identification. This competency is especially relevant for grades 4-6. Also, it involves the aspiring teacher showing the proper choice of activities such as silent reading, extended reading, reading for pleasure, and using various types of reading materials. Once again, proper communication with parents is also covered.

Reading Comprehension and Applications

For this competency, aspiring teachers should display a grasp of all the processes and factors involved in reading comprehension. They can adequately assess a student's reading comprehension level and employ strategies and methods for moving children towards improvement in this area. Some of the skills involved in reading comprehension include identifying main ideas and supporting ideas, inferring a writer's intentions, analyzing characters and plots, finding connections between different texts, using context to extrapolate meaning, summarizing, and paraphrasing. An aspiring teacher will show the ability to teach these skills using a great variety of types of texts, including fables, poetry, historical fiction and realistic fiction.

Vocabulary Development

This competency applies primarily to teaching grades 4-6. Aspiring teachers will be asked to demonstrate knowledge of all the different strategies and activities teachers can use to increase students' vocabulary. In addition, the aspiring teacher will exhibit a solid understanding of the proper teaching and assessment of vocabulary for reading, writing, speaking and listening using a wide range of topics and genres.

Reading, Inquiry, and Research

This competency assesses an aspiring teacher's ability to help children create age-appropriate research questions, carry out research, and develop and present written or oral material that answers these research questions. Some teaching strategies that the aspiring teacher will be asked about include brainstorming, organizing information, paraphrasing, identifying good sources, and recognizing main topics, supporting information, and conclusions. The exam also covers the importance of encouraging teamwork with classmates and communication with parents.

Writing Conventions

Writing conventions are the fundamentals of writing and include punctuation, handwriting, spelling, capitalization, and grammar skills. Future teachers are expected to recognize the different stages that children typically go through when learning to grasp these concepts properly and choose materials and activities in the classroom that will be most suitable to help students progress to the next stage.

Written Communication

This competency tests how an aspiring teacher applies knowledge about the importance and purpose of written communication in the classroom. An aspiring teacher will be asked about the fundamental role of vocabulary development and the significance of the concepts of audience, purpose, and setting. Also, the application of reading, speaking, and listening materials for teaching written communication will be covered, as well as an aspiring teacher's intention to provide a variety of relevant and real-world writing opportunities.

Viewing and Representing

This competency covers the use of visual images and media. An aspiring teacher will show that they grasp the purpose of different forms of media and technology. They will also be able to guide and support their future students in their analysis and application of different forms of media and provide them with an interesting variety of opportunities for presenting content using media and images with classmates, family, and others.

Assessment of Developing Literacy

Aspiring teachers must show that they know when and how to implement the appropriate assessment tools to judge a student's reading and writing level adequately. They should be familiar with the state regulations when it comes to assessing literacy abilities. Once the appropriate tests and assessments have been administered, aspiring teachers need to be confident in determining the areas in which students require extra help and which materials and methods to employ in these different situations.

Registration Process for the TExES Core Subjects EC-6: ELAR Exam

Users can register for the TExES Core Subjects EC-6: ELAR Exam at the Texas Educator Certification Examination Program website or by phone. Exams are administered year-round at any CAT (computer-administered test) location either in Texas or out-of-state. CAT locations can be found in almost every large city. It costs $58 for any of the 5 subject area exams taken separately (including the ELAR exam) and payment is due at registration. From the date of payment, test-takers will have 170 days to complete the exam.

TExES Core Subjects EC-6: ELAR Testing Policies

When arriving at the TExES testing center for the TExES Core Subjects EC-6: ELAR exam, test takers should have 2 forms of ID with them. Each ID must contain their signature and photograph. The first and last names on both IDs must exactly match the name that was used to register for the test. If a test-taker has a name discrepancy or is missing a valid ID, they should contact Pearson at least 7 days before the test date. Test takers will be given a locker outside the testing room to leave valuables and other materials they cannot bring into the room. These include but are not limited to tobacco products, weapons, cell phones, watches and jewelry, notebooks and papers, wallets and purses, and food and drinks. Friends and family members will also not be allowed to enter the testing room.

How Are the TExES Core Subjects EC-6: ELAR Exams Scored?

There is no single score given for the TExES Core Subjects EC-6. The exam is considered passed if the test taker receives a score of at least 240 on each subject area, including the ELAR subject area exam. TExES scores will be posted within 7 days of taking the test, and test-takers can register to retake the exam in 30 days from the last attempt date. If the test taker failed only one subject area, they can register to retake only the ELAR exam, provided they passed the other subject areas. A test-taker is allowed to retake the TExES Core Subjects EC-6: ELAR exam a total of 5 times.

How to Prepare for the TExES Core Subjects EC-6: ELAR Exam

It is essential to create a TExES study guide when preparing for the TExES Core Subjects EC-6: ELAR Exam and to know the most effective way to study for it. It is a good idea for aspiring teachers to take a practice exam to get a feel for the content, format, and difficulty of this subject area. Based on the practice test results and having looked over the preparation manual for the TExES Core Subjects EC-6: ELAR, aspiring teachers can now determine how to best allocate their time. They can choose books or an online course to take, hopefully including many interactive components such as flashcards, checklists, and practice tests. Test-takers need to decide how much time they intend to study each day and stay committed to this until the exam day.

TExES Core Subjects EC-6: ELAR Exam Practice Questions and Test

Taking TExES Core Subjects EC-6: ELAR Exam practice tests is one of the most effective ways to study for the exam and feel confident on test day. Taking TExES practice test will help aspiring teachers prepare by familiarizing them with the format of questions, how quickly they need to move through the questions and the general topics the exam will cover. In these practice tests, aspiring teachers are typically given selected-response sample questions covering a wide range of competencies within the subject area. The correct answers are given and explained after each sample question. Teaching candidates should take several practice tests along the way: they offer a fantastic way to gauge progress, help testers understand where to focus their studies and get a feel for the time limitations.

Expert Contributor

Amy Mayers

Amy Mayers, M.Ed. has taught middle school math for over 7 years. She is a Texas certified teacher for grades 4-12 in mathematics and has passed the TExES Math 4-8 and the TExES Math 7-12. Amy graduated with a B.S. in Mathematical Sciences from the University of Houston and a Master's degree in Curriculum and Instruction from the University of St. Thomas.

Frequently Asked Questions

  • How hard is the TExES Core Subjects EC-6: ELAR exam?

    The TExES Core Subjects EC-6 is a difficult exam. It covers a very wide range of subjects from reading, to mathematics, to fine arts. It is a long test (5 hours), and a passing score for each of the 5 subject areas is needed in order to pass. It is important to develop a study plan and spend plenty of time studying for this test in order to be successful.

  • What competencies does the TExES Core Subjects EC-6: ELAR exam assess?

    The TExES Core Subjects for EC-6 is an exam taken by aspiring teachers in the state of Texas looking to become certified to teach early childhood through 6th grade. The exam covers 5 subject areas: English Language Arts and Reading (ELAR), Mathematics, Social Studies, Science, and Fine arts, Health, and Physical Education.

  • Who needs to take the TExES Core Subjects EC-6: ELAR exam?

    Passing the TExES Core Subjects EC-6 Exam is one of the requirements of becoming certified to teach early childhood through 6th grade in the state of Texas. Once the aspiring teacher has passed this exam and has fulfilled all the other requirements, they are considered certified.


Take a TExES Core Subjects EC-6: ELAR Practice Test Online

Exam Instructions:

Complete the practice test below to test your knowledge of TExES Core Subjects EC-6: ELAR.
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  1. Students are using the dictionary to look up words as they are reading. A student is having difficulty finding words. The teacher instructs the student to look for guide words. The student should then focus on looking for
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  2. A student has come across a word she is having difficulty decoding. Which of the following would help the student identify the graphic cues?

    • Correct Answer
  3. Which activities would best promote literary analysis skills for students who are in a second-grade classroom?

    • Correct Answer
  4. A student is quickly able to recognize the words: at, the, me, and, to. What is this known as?

    • Correct Answer
  5. A fourth-grade student appears to have psychosocial deprivation. To best help the student develop appropriate language skills, the teacher should:

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  6. Students are learning how to write letters. The teacher introduces one letter each day and has students trace the letters. Thereafter, when writing, students will focus on which of the following ?

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  7. Which would be the most suitable activity to help students ages five to six develop age-appropriate phonemic awareness?

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  8. A middle school teacher can best glean insights on what students understand about descriptive writing and how well they can apply what they have learned about paragraph-writing skills before a unit on descriptive writing by asking students to

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  9. Students work in groups to develop a Venn diagram in relation to mystery stories and adventure stories. This assignment primarily promotes understanding of which of the following concepts?

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  10. Parents of an elementary student are worried that their child lacks motivation to read, even though this was not the case a year ago. To best help the child develop the skills at home, parents should consider which of the following?

    • Correct Answer
  11. Students are partaking in an activity that requires them to take a paragraph and write it into their own words. This activity will help students develop which of the following?

    • Correct Answer
  12. Students are asked to identify the role of each word in the following sentence: Grandma cooked dinner in our kitchen last week. By labeling the role of each word/phrase, students will

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  13. A teacher reviews four students' strengths in literacy development.

    Student 1: Earns perfect scores on spelling tests.

    Student 2: Appropriately draws figures and objects based on verbal instructions of what to draw.

    Student 3: Appropriately pronounces a word and then can point to an image that represents that word.

    Student 4: Successfully writes down sentences, verbatim, as the teacher recites them.

    Based on the information above, which student displays recognition of the alphabetic principle?

    • Correct Answer
  14. Students have been introduced to paragraph writing. They can identify the parts of a paragraph. Before they begin to apply such knowledge, it will be best if the teacher

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  15. Students are being assessed on various homophones. If the assessment is context-dependent, students will need which of the following?

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