FTCE Middle Grades General Science 5-9 Practice Test & Study Guide

What is the FTCE Middle Grades General Science 5-9 Test?

Florida Teacher Certification Examinations (FTCE) refer to a series of tests one must complete to become a certified educator in Florida. The Bureau of Educator Certification (BEC) instructs candidates on specific test registries needed to qualify for the grade and desired subject.

The FTCE Middle Grades General Science 5-9 test is a subject area examination (SAE) required for prospective educators at the baccalaureate level to teach middle school science. To obtain a Florida professional teacher certification, candidates must prove their content knowledge by completing the appropriate SAE.

The General Science 5-9 exam is computer-based and about 100 questions long. To pass, candidates must earn a scaled score of 200. Examinees will have 2 hours and 30 minutes to complete their attempt. The testing facility provides no breaks or additional materials during the exam.

The exam is multiple choice and presents its questions in five different forms:

  1. Command: choose the best answer.
  2. Graphics: choose the best answer based on a given graphic.
  3. Sentence Completion: choose the best answer that completes the given sentence.
  4. Direct Question: answer the question with the most appropriate response.
  5. Scenario: choose the best answer in the context of a given scenario.

Examinees must pay $150 to take the test. Payment of the FTCE retake fee is required for each retake of the exam should the candidate fail. FTCE registration is open year-round on a 24/7 basis.

Practice tests give you a better idea of the topics you have mastered and those you should keep studying.

FTCE Middle Grades General Science 5-9 Exam Logistics

Candidates may register to take the FTCE General Science 5-9 test online through their FTCE/FELE account. Should the test-taker wish to send their FTCE scores to an entity besides the Bureau of Educator Certification and the Florida Department of Education, they must specify additional score recipients during registration.

To achieve a scaled score of 200, examinees must earn a raw score of 72 percent. Candidates will receive their official score through their FTCE/FELE account within a month of completion. If the examinee does not receive a passing score, the FTCE retake policy requires the test-taker to wait 31 days before registering to retake the exam.

On the day of their FTCE test, candidates should arrive a half an hour ahead of time and bring two forms of identification, one of which must be a government-issued photo ID. Some test sites at designated FTCE testing locations offer alternative arrangement testing appointments for candidates with a disability or nursing mothers. These arrangements are subject to approval.

Extenuating circumstances such as illness or the death of a family member may qualify candidates to reschedule their appointment without incurring additional costs.

FTCE Middle Grades General Science 5-9 Test Content

There are nine competencies and skills covered in the FTCE General Science 5-9 exam. Due to the scope of content covered throughout these grades, the exam samples the candidate's knowledge of a broad range of scientific topics, including matter, forces of motion, energy, Earth processes, space science, life processes and how physical and biological factors affect the environment. Examinees will also need to demonstrate proficiency in learning environments and scientific inquiry.

The FTCE/FELE Test Information Guide provides a complete description of each core area of the exam. Below is a brief overview of the specific FTCE competencies and its corresponding percentage of the Middle Grades Science exam.

Conceptual and Quantitative Knowledge of the Structure and Behavior of Matter - 14%

This FTCE General Science 5-9 competency is tied for the largest representation on the exam and assesses the examinee's ability to:

  • Discuss various aspects of matter, including physical and chemical properties, states, and gas laws.
  • Understand the parts and functions of an atom and an overview of atomic theory.
  • Recognize elements and compounds and relate them to the periodic table.
  • Understand chemical bonds and reactions.

Conceptual and Quantitative Knowledge of Forces and Motion - 13%

This FTCE General Science 5-9 competency assesses candidates ability to:

  • Solve problems relating to force and motion, especially by applying Newton's laws.
  • Discuss the various aspects of waves and wave phenomena.
  • Understand and apply concepts of electricity and magnetic fields.

Conceptual and Quantitative Knowledge of Energy and Its Effects - 12%

This FTCE General Science 5-9 competency demands the test taker:

  • Understand and discuss how energy can transfer and change.
  • Identify the types of energy associated with nuclear reactions, the electromagnetic spectrum, and electricity.
  • Relate concepts such as the Law of Thermodynamics to real-world trends and events.

Knowledge of Earth and the Processes That Affect It - 13%

This FTCE General Science 5-9 competency asks about:

  • The history of the theory of continental drift and what processes affect plate tectonics.
  • how geological structures form and what determines geologic age and eras.
  • The difference between climate and weather and identify the factors that determine each, such as ocean currents.
  • Processes such as weathering, rock formation, and fossilization.
  • The various divisions of the Earth, such as the geosphere, hydrosphere, and atmosphere.
  • The water cycle process, including how water can be stored.

Knowledge of Space Science - 6%

This FTCE General Science 5-9 competency demands the test taker:

  • Understand the real-world effects of Earth's positioning in the solar system.
  • Discuss the varying properties of stars, their evolution, and how scientists gather information.
  • Describe the effect of space exploration on modern society.
  • Understand methods of evaluating celestial bodies and determining their characteristics.

Knowledge of Processes of Life - 14%

This FTCE General Science 5-9 competency is the other section with the largest representation on the exam. It assesses:

  • Relate and compare cellular processes and structures regarding their functions, similarities, and differences.
  • Understand and discuss genetics relating to DNA, RNA, and disorders.
  • Differentiate between viruses, bacteria, protists, and fungi.
  • Understand the differences between plant and animal cell structures and functions. Describe the differing processes found in each.
  • Apply theories such as evolution and natural selection to the real world and evaluate the impact of biotechnology on society at large and small scales.

Knowledge of the Effects of Physical and Biological Factors on the Environment - 10%

  • Describe the process of the biogeochemical cycle and how biotic and abiotic factors influence an ecosystem.
  • Understand how interactions with lifeforms such as microorganisms or humans impact ecosystems and the environment at large.
  • Discuss the sustainability of using natural resources and environmental factors that influence the survival rate of organisms.

Knowledge of the Science Learning Environment - 5%

This FTCE General Science 5-9 competency is represented the least in the exam at 5%. It demands the test taker:

  • Possess strong knowledge of safety procedures and proper handling of scientific equipment.
  • Understand the best practices for teaching scientific concepts and facilitating experiments.

Knowledge of Process Skills and Application of Scientific Inquiry - 13%

In this FTCE General Science 5-9 competency, examinees should show that they are able to:

  • Apply various skills and knowledge to the process of scientific inquiry.
  • Compare the methods of different scientific fields and discuss scientific laws, theories, and models.
  • Identify the possible limitations and biases present in the scientific process and community.

How to Prepare for the FTCE Middle Grades General Science 5-9 Test

Proper FTCE test prep is the best way to ensure that one's first attempt on the FTCE General Science 5-9 exam is all that's needed. Test-takers can use many effective methods to maximize their readiness on exam day, including:

  • Make a Schedule - forming a study plan can help candidates stay organized and accountable while also spreading out work to keep from becoming overwhelmed.
  • Share the Load - studying with a group can help the candidate verbalize and reinforce what FTCE subject area they have studied.
  • Focus on the Weak Links - using index cards, sticky notes, or other dedicated methods can help the candidate internalize those trickier skills and topics.
  • Know the Format - taking an FTCE practice test can help candidates prepare for the test's presentation and how best to pace themselves under the exam's time constraints.
  • Keep Your Mind Fresh - by taking regular breaks from studying and getting enough rest, the candidate ensures they enter the exam with all their wits about them.

FTCE Middle Grades General Science Study Guide

Examinees may utilize a study guide when preparing for the FTCE Middle Grades General Science 5-9 exam. Study guides from FTCE test preparation courses provide an overview of the content and covers the competencies and skills listed above and on the FTCE/FELE Test Information Guide.

Why should candidates invest in a study guide instead of using the Test Information Guide? Study guides go into much more detail on the exam topics and the test itself. Additionally, a test-specific FTCE study guide frames the knowledge presented in the context of the exam and education while providing extra tips and tricks to help the candidate succeed.

FTCE Middle Grades General Science Practice Test and Questions

Candidates can take an FTCE General Science 5-9 practice test to gauge their strengths and weaknesses regarding the content and format of this FTCE Subject Area Exam. In some cases, the phrasing or presentation of a question can be the most challenging aspect. A good FTCE practice test can be found online for little to no cost and may include features like a timer so candidates can adjust to the pacing of the test.

Having access to FTCE Middle Grades General Science practice test questions can be invaluable for candidates to adjust their studying and be as prepared as possible to getting their Florida teacher certification.


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Exam Instructions:

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  1. Which is not a fundamental assumption of the cell theory?

    • Correct Answer
  2. The process of an organism converting nitrate in the environment into nitrogen in our atmosphere is known as

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  3. If 1400 J of energy is absorbed by the producers within a field, how much should end up in the tertiary consumer?
    If 1400 J of energy is absorbed by the producers within a field, how much should end up in the tertiary consumer?
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  4. A characteristic that is counterproductive to scientific thought is
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  5. A healer on TV claims they have created an alternative method for curing cancer that has been scientifically proven to work, but evidence shows there is no validity to this claim. This is an example of

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  6. If the period of a wave doubled, what happened to its frequency?

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  7. Which of the following objects will exhibit no resonance when white light shines on them?

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  8. JJ Thompson determined that the electron was a negative particle. The experiment that determined the actual mass and charge was
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  9. The sugar and water in a cup of sugar water can be easily separated from each other. This makes sugar water a

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  10. Which of Mendel's Laws is the basis for the Punnett Square?
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  11. Which of the following is NOT an example of incomplete dominance?

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  12. Which of the following spheres would contain Earth's oceans?

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  13. The type of rock that is formed as magma and cools on the earth's crust is called

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  14. Three resistors are connected in series with resistance values of {eq}5~\Omega {/eq}, {eq}2~\Omega {/eq}, and {eq}4~\Omega {/eq}. What is the total resistance of the circuit?

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  15. The resistance of a light bulb is 12.0 ohms, and there is 1.50 amp of current passing through it. What is the voltage of the circuit?

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