Welp, this is a bit late to help much of anyone this time around, but I figure that a) since it’s a new test, and b) since it’s a requirement for at least the future NJ Spanish teachers/TFA CMs teaching Spanish in lots of places out there, I would give my impressions of the test. Then I won’t update this page (unless, of course, something exciting happens!) until AFTER the March 12 Elementary Education: Content Knowledge exam. I promise! The next post will also be partly dedicated to some first impressions on the Pre-Institute Work (and probably brief as at the moment I’m only on Unit 2/6!)
So, for starters, getting to the S: WL exam happened to be hellish for me, mostly because I made the perennial mistake of trusting in the NJ Transit system to get me to Penn Station on time.
…So after I arrived at 8:45 for my 8:30 appointment (for which I was also supposed to be a half hour early, so…45 minutes late) in a panic, I went through all the usual BS of photos and promising to give them my first-born male if I cheated. Then came the test. The test’s UI was very intuitive so there were no issues there. We went through listening comp first, which was fine, and seemed to follow the comfortable trajectory of getting progressively harder. It was actually pretty easy, because they play the listening section, then they show you the questions they’re going to ask you, and leave them on the screen while you listen a second time. They also give you scratch paper to take notes. Each listening section has mostly content questions with one or two cultural knowledge questions that only coincidentally have anything to do with the passage.
Then came the reading comprehension section, which was fine but I was SO tired from getting up at 4:30am to take this test that I kept zoning out. Don’t be me, and you’ll be fine.
Then came writing, three different tasks, getting progressively harder. I felt pretty confident in my first one, okay in my second, and eh in my third. Yes, eh. The adjective? You know the one. The third passage pertains to the first listening section, and then there are two more listenings: an opinion, and a fake dialogue. Haha. Those are always weird. These were all pretty okay. (You’ll notice I’m being vague. This is because I want to keep my first-born son.)
My only real complaints about the test is having to take in in a room with other people taking speaking tests (distracting), and that they are inconsistent about whether they show you the timer for your prep times for tasks. I would like it to have been available for every single section to help with my time management. And, of course, being 45 minutes late. Yeah that.
Anyway, see you guys in a month–and with results!