The Georgia Assessments for the Certification of Educators, or GACE, test is a comprehensive and challenging series of assessments for men and women who want to teach in the state of Georgia. The exams in the series were developed by the Georgia Professional Standards Commission in consultation with a team of expert exam administrators. The tests are criterion-referenced, meaning that scores are compared to an objective standard rather than to the performance of other test takers. There are five basic types of GACE test.
The basic skills assessment measures general knowledge in reading, mathematics, and writing. The reading and mathematics tests consist entirely of multiple-choice questions, while the writing test includes both multiple-choice questions and a constructed-response assignment (essay).
The majority of the exams in the GACE series includes content assessments, which evaluate knowledge and pedagogical skill in specific subject areas. There are content assessments targeted at instruction for certain age groups, such as middle school, and for particular content areas, like art. In general, these tests contain both multiple-choice and constructed-response questions, with the assessments for middle grades, American Sign Language, and Latin shorter than the others.
The third type of GACE test is the professional pedagogy assessment, which measures acumen related to instruction and student evaluation. This examination is composed of two tests, each of which contains both multiple-choice and constructed-response items.
The educational leadership assessment is for people aspiring to become supervisors, principals, and superintendents. This GACE test is broken down into two parts, each of which contains both multiple-choice and constructed-response questions.
The fifth type of GACE test is the paraprofessional assessment for men and women who want to become teacher assistants in the state of Georgia. This exam covers issues related to assisting instruction in reading, writing, and mathematics.
Most candidates take their GACE test via computer at a special testing facility, although it is possible to take a paper-and-pencil version. Those who submit the computer version will receive the unofficial scores for the multiple-choice questions immediately upon completion of the exam. An official score report, which includes the marks for constructed-response assignments, is delivered approximately one month after the exam date.
1. The smallest functional unit of speech is a:
2. A kindergarten teacher administers a paper-and-pencil test to six children to assess their skill in representing phonemes with letters. Two of the children perform poorly on the test. Which of the following is most likely to be true?
A. The test was poorly designed.
B. The children who performed poorly need to be checked for learning disabilities.
C. The children who performed poorly may perform significantly better the next day.
D. The children who performed well will probably learn to read more quickly than those who performed poorly.
3. In his highly influential book Why Johnny Can’t Read, Rudolf Flesch advocated:
A. a whole language approach to reading.
B. using phonics to teach children to read.
C. combining phonics with whole language instruction.
D. introducing the “look-and-say” method of reading instruction.
4. When students write letters to the local newspaper in response to an issue of local concern, they are practicing:
A. functional writing.
B. narrative writing.
C. informational writing.
D. poetic writing.
5. By the end of the first grade, most students will be able to:
A. notice and comment on aspects of the writer’s craft.
B. use reading as a tool for learning in content areas.
C. sustain interest and understanding over long texts.
D. use letter-sound information along with meaning and language to decode words.
1. B. Phonemes comprise the syllables that make up words. While phonemes correspond to the letters of an alphabetic writing system, letters themselves are not units of speech.
2. C. Young children frequently have trouble focusing attention and following directions. On any given day, a child may perform poorly on a test for reasons that are wholly unrelated to the test’s content or purpose. Individual retesting should be considered before reaching a conclusion about the child’s level of understanding.
3. B. Flesch was an outspoken advocate of phonics. He argued that whole language instruction, also known as “look-and-say,” was not a useful teaching method and was the primary reason many children were having difficulty learning to read.
4. A. Functional writing is writing that serves a practical purpose. Writing such things as letters, instructions, recipes, advertisements, and journal entries helps students understand that writing has an important role to play in everyday life.
5. D. Most early readers will have achieved phonemic awareness and mastered the alphabetic principle by the end of first grade. The reading skills described in the other choices are characteristic of advanced readers in grades four, five, and six.