MTEL General Curriculum Test
The General Curriculum test is designed to assess a candidate's proficiency in the following areas: language arts, mathematics, history, social science, science and technology, child development. Candidates are also asked to demonstrate their ability to integrate knowledge and understanding into two well supported open-response items. The General Curriculum test applies to students concentrating in Wheelock College's Elementary Education and Teacher of Students with Moderate Disabilities (TSMD) programs.
Preparing For The Test
A. Program specific supports for Wheelock Students preparing for the test:
- Undergraduate students take liberal arts coursework as a part of both their General Education and Arts and Sciences Major requirements. These courses are designed to cover the various content areas tested on the General Curriculum test. This, combined with what the student already knows from their high school experience, will help students to effectively demonstrate their knowledge of content areas.
- Graduate students took liberal arts coursework as a part of both their high school and undergraduate college requirements. This, combined with Wheelock College's ACD 505 class, will help students to effectively demonstrate their knowledge of content areas on the General Curriculum test.
- Depending on their program of study, graduate students will take related coursework. All of these courses, combined with departmental initiatives and supports, build a solid foundation for students planning to take this test.
B. Preparation Sessions and Workshops:
Unless otherwise noted, most of these sessions are free to Wheelock students and alumni only and are not open to the general public. Be sure to check back regularly for updates.
- ACD 305/505 01- Focuses on test strategies, content, and preparation for the General Curriculum Subject Test. Open to alumni, undergraduate, and graduate students. Students must register through Academic Records and Registration. Visit the student portal for course schedule information.
C. Suggestions for Self-Guided Preparation:
- Create a study guide for yourself. The General Curriculum test objectives are available online. These objectives give you a great framework to build your study guide around. We encourage you to purchase a binder and divider tabs. Each divider tab should represent one objective. The contents within each section should answer to the terms outlined in an objective area. Setting up a binder like this may take some time, but with advanced planning will be well worth it!
- Practice Exams.One of the best ways to prepare for the General Curriculum test is to do as many practice tests as possible. Below are sites that offer practice exams which will prove to be helpful study tools:
- The General Curriculum practice test. Full scale test will be offered soon on the Massachusetts Test for Educator Licensure web site. This is the closest thing to the MTEL and should be at the top of the list for everyone who is preparing for this exam.
- Arizona's Elementary Education exam
- Colorado's Elementary Education exam
- Illinois' Elementary/Middle Grades exam
- New York State's Elementary Assessment of Teaching Skills exam
- Additional Resources. Please note that some of these suggestions are based on student recommendations and are not designed to ensure passage on this test, but to help provide you with supplemental information.
- Massachusetts Comprehensive Assessment System (MCAS). Previous test items are available online.
- What Your Fourth Grader Should Know by E.D. Hirsch
- What Your Sixth Grader Should Know by E.D. Hirsch
- Preparation resources for the Early Childhood. It covers the same content areas up to second grade, but still is quite helpful.
D. Tips and Suggestions for Taking this Test
- Have a game plan for how you are going to approach the test. The great thing about the MTEL is that you are not required to take the test in chronological order-how you take it is entirely up to you. We encourage you to look at the open response items first, set-up an outline about how you are going to approach answering these questions, and then go back to get started on multiple choice items. Approaching the test this way may help to alleviate some test anxiety and set a good pace for yourself with the rest of the test.
- Be clear and consistent with your responses. One of the goals of the MTEL is to determine whether or not you will be able to communicate clearly with students and parents alike. This being the case, it is essential that your handwriting on open response items is legible, your spelling and grammar are exceptional, and your answers are well thought out.
- Get focused! To calm your nerves once the test begins, it is best to give yourself a few minutes to relax and look over the test in its entirety before getting started. Given that you have a full four hours to take the test, take advantage of a restroom break. Getting up from the test for a few minutes and throwing some cold water on your face will work wonders.