Prospective educators seeking certification to teach the preschool through grade 12 curriculum in the Georgia public school system are required to pass a series of exams known as the Georgia Assessments for the Certification of Educators (GACE). The Georgia Professional Standards Commission (GaPSC) is responsible for the preparation and certification of all academic personnel employed within the state. The GACE exams are used as a tool by the GaPSC to determine the skills and subject matter knowledge of educational professionals and give educators the opportunity to continuously improve performance. Proper GACE test prep strategies and review are essential for any academic candidate planning to take the GACE assessment.
GACE Exams Offered
The GACE exam suite contains over 50 assessments to choose from. Each assessment consists of different exam types and exam formats, specifically designed to evaluate a candidate's proficiency in a certain subject matter. Most of the assessments are CBT (computer-based testing), but there are exceptions. Candidates have the option to test on a single exam or all exams offered within each assessment. In order to determine the best path to take when considering how to pass the GACE test, the test-taker will need to decide which assessment they wish to test on. Below are a just few examples of the different GACE assessment types available:
The Program Admission Assessment tests on (3) subjects has a selected-response (SR) and constructed-response (CR) format. This assessment has a test duration time of 5 hours.
The GACE Content Assessment exams evaluate a candidate's expertise in specific subjects to gain certification. Potential candidates will want to review the exams found in this category and choose an exam from the many listed. Each assessment contains at least 1 exam, all of which have different formats and test duration times.
The Georgia Ethics Assessments refer to The Georgia Educator Assessment and The Georgia Ethics for Educational Leadership Assessment. Each consists of training modules that provide the test-taker with real-life scenarios of what an educator might encounter while teaching in a classroom. There is also a summative test relating to the material covered in all the training modules. Even though each module is designed not to exceed 30 minutes, the test is not timed, and the test-taker can work at their own pace.
How to Take the GACE Test
For prospective candidates wondering how to take the GACE test in Georgia, the first step is to choose the assessment you wish to register for. Before registering for the GACE exam, however, you must confirm the assessment selection with the Georgia Professional Standards Commission (GaPSC). Passing an assessment does not automatically confirm certification.
All GACE exams have different registration and testing requirements. For example, the Program Admission assessment is administered via computer and is the only GACE exam approved for at-home testing. Candidates must meet equipment requirements and register online at least 2 days prior to scheduling a test day. The Georgia Ethics, Paraprofessional and Teacher Leadership assessments have specific exam logistics and registration, but the assessment can be taken at any time. The remaining GACE assessments require the candidate to create a MyPSC account and an ETS GACE testing account to complete the registration process. During this process, the candidate will be required to choose a testing date during a testing window, select a reason for testing, and may need to indicate who else should receive the GACE exam scores. A candidate needing alternative accommodations can submit and view that information within their ETS GACE testing account.
GACE Test Prep Guide
After the assessment selection has been approved by the GaPSC and the registration process is completed, the candidate can then focus on the specific details within the assessment. From there, the candidate can use that information to create their own GACE exam prep strategy.
Time management skills and having a designated study routine is a must.
On the weeks and days leading up to the assessment, review the material you know, and then take time to perfect the questions that are still posing a challenge.
Each GACE assessment will have its own set of testing guidelines. Research what items are and are not allowed into the testing location, break policies, and any other test day information you should be aware of.
On the day of the test, be well-rested, and have the exam details and logistics on hand. Arrive early at the testing site to get settled and have a few moments to review.
How to Pass the GACE Test
The assessments are designed to measure a candidate's skills and knowledge, and you must be prepared to demonstrate your expertise. GACE study materials, such as study guides, flashcards, online courses, and practice tests can help you achieve a passing score.
Each GACE assessment has its own scoring standards. For example, the Georgia Ethics assessments are scored after each training module. At the end of the exam, the scores are reported as either Passed or Not Passed. The Teacher Leadership assessment contains (6) tasks totaling 72 points. A passing score for this assessment would be a score of 42. The Paraprofessional and Program Admission assessments do not have a tiered standard and the passing score for each of those is 250. Content assessments consist of scoring within (2) categories: induction and professional.
Viewing & Reporting GACE Scores
The process of viewing and the reporting of GACE assessment scores depend on the exam. For example, the Passed/Not Passed scores for the Georgia Ethics assessments will remain in the candidate's account for 30 days. If the candidate successfully passed the exam, a certificate will be available to print from their account. The Content assessments have specific dates of when the scores will be available, and others have scores posted 7 days after the testing window closes. Candidates can find more information online to further understand their prospective exam scoring report.
How to Study for the GACE
To determine how to successfully pass the GACE test, the candidate must familiarize themselves with the GACE exam format and the content it covers. Knowing this information will help determine the GACE test prep and which study materials should be used. For example, if an exam (such as Computer Science) consists only of selected-response (SR) questions, then perhaps flashcards and interactive online quizzes are the best study option. If an exam is performance-based, such as the American Sign Language Proficiency Interview (ASLPI), then a candidate may want to hone their skills with a study partner or an online course. Candidates hoping to become certified in a World Language, say German for example, will be expected to read and write text. In that case, an individual may decide that the best GACE exam prep might be an online language proficiency practice test. In summary, there are many different types of GACE assessments and test-takers will have to come up with a study plan that best fits their needs.
GACE Practice Tests
The importance of making use of study guides and practice tests cannot be stressed enough. A GACE practice test will give the test-taker an idea of what is on the exam, the format of the exam, including sample questions and similar content. Candidates can find tutorials and study guides in various formats and locations, both online and in print. Practice tests can also be found online in the form of flashcards and interactive quizzes.
Frequently Asked Questions
What do I need to know for the GACE?
Prospective test-takers need to know that there are many different GACE assessments to choose from. In order to best prepare, candidates will need to know the exam they would like to register for, how to register, the exam format, and exam logistics (testing sites, policies, etc.)
How do I pass the GACE?
The best way to pass the GACE is to be prepared. Study guides, practice tests, tutorials, and online course videos should be included in any GACE test-taking strategy.