leaf_image_of_mtel_picture.jpgPASSING THE MATH 09 MTELleaf_image_of_mtel_picture.jpg

—Important Keys to Help Pass the Secondary Education Math Exam in Massachusetts —





The Massachusetts Tests for Educator Licensure program, better known as the MTEL, was initiated by the Massachusetts Department of Elementary and Secondary Education in 1998 as part of our statewide education reform initiative for educators seeking PreKindergarten to grade 12 licenses. The MTEL program includes a test of communication and literacy skills as well as tests of subject matter knowledge. The tests are designed to ensure that Massachusetts educators can communicate adequately with students, parents/guardians, and other educators and that they are knowledgeable in the subject matter of the license sought.
The MTEL tests are designed to measure candidates’ ability to read with comprehension and write with clarity as well as to measure the breadth and depth of candidates’ knowledge in specific subject fields. The tests consist of multiple-choice items and open-response items that typically require responses in essay or problem-solving form. Tests for languages other than English assess listening and reading comprehension as well as the ability to write effectively and speak fluently in the language being tested.

The MTEL tests are criterion referenced and objective based. A criterion-referenced test is designed to measure a candidate’s subject matter knowledge in relation to an established standard rather than in relation to the performance of other candidates.

Each test is designed to measure areas of knowledge called subareas. Within each subarea, statements of important knowledge, called objectives, define the content of the test. The test objectives were validated for the MTEL by Massachusetts educators, including college and university faculty members, vocational technical teachers, adult basic education teachers, and other professional educators and were aligned with Massachusetts licensure regulations, Massachusetts Vocational Technical Education Regulations, and the student learning standards in the Massachusetts Curriculum Frameworks and the Adult Basic Education Curriculum Frameworks, as appropriate.

Massachusetts educators, including college and university faculty members, vocational technical teachers, adult basic education teachers, and other professional educators, completed a content validation survey for each test. Each survey participant reviewed the objectives for his or her field to ensure that the objectives for each test are important to the job of a Massachusetts educator.

Test items are aligned with both the objectives and the educational materials relevant to Massachusetts, including state licensure regulations, Massachusetts Vocational Technical Education Regulations, and the student learning standards in the Massachusetts Curriculum Frameworks and the Adult Basic Education Curriculum Frameworks, as appropriate. The test items are reviewed by panels of Massachusetts educators and college and university faculty.
(http://www.mtel.nesinc.com/MA13_overview.asp)

Basic key points you should know about the test:

  • They offer the test 5 times a year at 8 different locations in Massachusetts (Boston (North, South, and Central), Worcester, Springfield, Hyannis, New Bedford, and North Adams)
  • It costs $100 to register on time. If you register late it's an additional $30 and if you register the day before it's an additional $50.
  • The test is always in the afternoon from 1:15 to 6:00. (Registration is from 1:15 to 2:00 and the test is from 2:00 to 6:00.)
  • You will need your test ticket and 2 forms of identification (1 photocopy of each form of identification, unless taking a morning test, then you will need 2 copies of each.)
  • They will provide you with a calculator and a formula sheet
  • The test scores range from 100 to 300.
  • You need a 240 to pass.
  • When you obtain your scores, if you passed it will say "met the requirements". If you do not pass, it will give you a breakdown of needs improvement, average, above average of each category on the test (for a list of the categories see below).



In order to successfully pass the Math MTEL 09, you need to score at least an 80%. The topic breakdown goes as follows:
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CATEGORIES ON TEST
SECTION
WEIGHT OF CATEGORY
Number Sense and Operations
Multiple Choice
12%
Patterns, Relations, and Algebra
Multiple Choice
23%
Geometry and Measurement
Multiple Choice
19%
Data Analysis, Statistics, and Probability
Multiple Choice
10%
Trigonometry, Calculus, and Discrete Mathematics
Multiple Choice
16%
Integration of Knowledge and Understanding
Open Response
20%

Practice Tests:


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Practice Books:
  1. "The Best Teachers' Test Preparation for MTEL Mathematics Fields 053, 047, and 09"...approximately $33.00.
  2. "XAM, The Name You Know, MTEL Mathematics 09" ...approximately $29.00.
  3. "XAM, Teachers' Certification Specialist, MTEL, Mathematics High School, Field 09"...approximately $60.00
  4. Books for each Category on the Math 09 ExamThis website gives you books to purchase for each of the 6 sub categories on the exam.

You can purchase most of these books at your local bookstore, Barnes and Noble Bookstore, or on discounted website such as Amazon, Ebay,Half Books.

Informational Websites (Writings/Videos):

Courses Available:
(These courses focus in on helping you pass the Math 09 MTEL)


If you have been teaching at the high school level without passing the test, I recommend taking a Calculus course at your nearest college to brush up on the more advanced material you haven't seen in awhile.

9 Things that I found to be helpful when taking the Math 09 MTEL exam:
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  1. Do the Open Response questions first
  2. Go through the multiple choice and do all the ones you know (Don't spend more than 2 minutes on a problem the first time around.)
  3. Go back to the multiple choice problems you skipped and try to work through them.
  4. If you are not done with 2 to 3 minutes left, go through and answer the same letter for all the problems remaining. (example: put letter "b" for all the ones you didn't do..statistically this gives you a better chance of getting more problems right.)
  5. Since most people use a graphing calculator, get yourself familiar again with a basic scientific calculator.
  6. Bring 3 to 5 sharpened pencils.
  7. Shut OFF you cell phone or even better leave it in the car. (During my exam a women got her test taken 2 1/2 hours into it because her phone rang.)
  8. Leave at least 30 minutes earlier than what you would think. (You don't want to worry about being late.)
  9. Go to bed early and get a good night's sleep


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