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MTEL Tests For Elementary Education – Earning A License

MTEL Tests for Elementary Education
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MTEL Tests For Elementary Education – Earning A License

Navigating the DESE’s website and trying to figure out what is necessary to earn a particular educator certification can bring on an ice-cream headache without the delicious creaminess that comes with the real thing.  Rather than dealing with a metaphorical ice pick to the temple, read below to determine which MTEL Tests for Elementary Education you should take to become a certified teacher in the Commonwealth of Massachusetts. 

MTEL Tests For Elementary Education – The Requirements

First of all, earning any new Mass educator license requires passing the Communication and Literacy MTEL which consists of separate Reading and Writing exams.  For tips on how to pass the Reading click HERE, for the writing click HERE.  Once these two are passed, you never have to take them for subsequent licenses.   A Sheltered English Immersion (SEI) endorsement is also required. 

There are 8 paths to earning an elementary license from the Massachusetts DESE.  Some of these refer to passing MTELs that have not been given since 2009, so we will ignore those requiring defunct exams or for those likewise unusual in nature.  Let’s focus on what the majority of you need to pass.

The General Curriculum MTEL consists of two parts, the multi-subject and the math.  The multi-subject consists of 55 multiple-choice questions and one open-response question.  The exam focuses on English, science, and history.  Unfortunately, the content is not elementary level.  For information on how to pass this MTEL, click HERE.

To earn an elementary educator license, you must pass the following MTELs:

  1. Communication and Literacy Reading and Writing (2 exams)
  2. General Curriculum Multi-subject (1 exam)

The Options

The prospective educator needs to decide between a few other MTELs, a math MTEL and a Reading MTEL (this is about how to teach reading, not about how well you read as on the Communication and Literacy reading subtest). 

For math, you choose one of the following MTELs:

  1. Elementary Mathematics
  2. General Curriculum Math
  3. Mathematics subject matter test
  4. Middle School subject matter test

How to choose?  The Mathematics and Middle School MTELs focus on advanced mathematics concepts up to and including algebra II, trigonometry, pre-calculus, and even some calculus.  If you are mathematically inclined, taking one of those MTELs could be right for you.  Deciding between the Elementary and General Curriculum Math exams is not always easy.  Read THIS blog to help you determine which exam is right for you. 

For Reading, you choose one of the following MTELs:

  1. Foundations of Reading
  2. Reading Specialist

Generally, the Foundations of Reading MTEL is less considered easier to pass than the Reading Specialist by most students.  For information on the Foundations of Reading MTEL, read our blog by Carol Milano HERE.

In summary, most prospective educators take the following MTELs in order to become certified to teach Elementary school in Massachusetts:

  1. Communication and Literacy Reading and Writing (2 exams)
  2. General Curriculum Multi-subject and Math (2 exams)
  3. Foundations of Reading (1 exam)

People have choices, as described above, as to which math and reading exams they can take, but we recommend the above path, as it has been successful for thousands of our students since we opened our doors in 1999.

If you have any questions or issues passing these or other MTELs, feel free to contact me directly at chuck@joinETI.com. Check our website, www.joinETI.com, to see how we’ve been guaranteeing MTEL success for over 20 years. 

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