NYSTCE ATAS Study Guide & Practice Test

What Is the NYSTCE ATAS Test?

The NYSTCE Assessment of Teaching Assistant Skills (NYSTCE ATAS) is the New York State Teacher Certification Examinations for accrediting teaching assistants seeking licensure. The exam covers Reading, Writing, Math, and Instructional Support. The exam evaluates the candidate's ability to assist classroom teachers in instructional interest and expertise. The NYSTCE ATAS also measures the core areas of subject matter expertise that teaching assistants must possess to provide instructional support.

How Long Is the NYSTCE ATAS?

The NYSTCE Assessment of Teaching Assistant Skills (ATAS) 095 test is three hours long, and each subtest portion of the exam takes up a different contribution of the testing time allotted. The actual testing time for each section may also vary depending on the level of difficulty of the questions comprised in each section, and the prospective teaching assistant's level of skill in that section. Furthermore, there is no specific allotted time for each sub-portion of the exam, so examinees may complete them at their own pace, bearing in mind to allocate time to complete each section.

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


The NYSTCE Assessment of Teaching Assistant Skills (ATAS) consists of 100 questions broken down into Reading, Writing, Math and Instructional Support subsections, each consisting of 27 questions except for the Instructional Support section, which consists of 19. Each of the four subsections constitutes the core subject areas required of prospective teaching assistants in the State of New York.

The material covered by each subsection consists of the following:


  • Determine appropriate word choice and meaning based on usage and context
  • Reading comprehension
  • Interpretation of information presented in graphical and tabular form


  • Demonstrate knowledge of parts of speech, such as verbs, pronouns, and modifiers, including adjectives and adverbs
  • Identify the appropriate use of parts of speech in a sentence, including subject-verb agreement, pronoun usage, and modifier usage
  • Understanding of correct sentence structure and punctuation
  • Appropriate usage of spelling and grammar


  • Knowledge of basic number concepts, such as decimal placement, units of measurement and estimating measurements in word or graphical problems
  • Demonstrate facility with addition, subtraction, multiplication, and division
  • Knowledge of higher-level math concepts such as fractions, percentages, and conversions between them

Instructional Support

  • Demonstrate knowledge of learning strategies to support students in reading through repetition, instructional aids such as dictionaries and online resources, reading comprehension strategies such as content skimming, review and summary, and appropriate evaluation and assessment to gauge the success of these strategies.
  • Understanding of appropriate tools and resources to assist students in improving writing skills, such as reviewing work before submission, the use of dictionaries and library supports, writing for clarity and precision and the means to evaluate the success of strategies employed by teaching assistants to support classroom educators in improving writing among their students.
  • Knowledge of skills to demonstrate the practical application of mathematics in everyday life, reviewing mathematical problems for common errors to enhance learning through repetition and review, the use of instructional aids, such as rulers, calculators, etc., and the use of tools to evaluate and assess the application of these strategies by teaching assistants in support of classroom instructors' mathematics instruction.

NYSTCE ATAS Passing Score

To pass the NYSTCE ATAS exam, prospective teaching assistants must achieve a minimum scaled score of 220 across a range of possible scores from 100 to 300.

The scores are then reported as either a "Pass" or a "Did Not Pass". Scores are also provided for sub-portion performance to enable examinees to review their total test performance, but should not be interpreted on a pass/fail basis, as with the total test score.

Candidates will have to wait for their report date to see their official scores, however, upon completing the test, examinees may get a chance to review their preliminary scores. Scores will be available to examinees in their NYSTCE accounts for a total of two years.

NYSTCE ATAS Exam Logistics

The assessment of teaching skills for prospective teaching assistants seeking licensure through the New York State Teacher Certification Examinations can be taken up to one year following exam registration. The exam may be taken on Mondays through Saturdays year-round at Pearson testing center locations throughout the state of New York and throughout the nation as well. Examinees may register for the test at the NYSTCE website. The time of the test will be provided upon successful registration for the NYSTCE ATAS test.

Registering for the NYSTCE ATAS

Anyone is eligible to take the NYSTCE test for teaching assistants. However, it is the credentialing certification exam for prospective teaching assistants seeking licensure in the State of New York, so it is the most appropriate exam for that audience. Prospective teaching assistants may register for the exam on the website of the New York State Teacher Certifications Examinations for a fee of $54. Examinees seeking to register for the NYSTCE ATAS test should also check with their school district or educator licensing agency to learn of any additional requirements that may be necessary for exam registration.

If a test taker wishes to cancel their registration, they may do so by visiting their account on the NYSTCE website, no later than 24 hours in advance of the exam time and then follow the provided instructions to withdraw their registration. As of August 31, 2021, test takers who withdraw their registration in this manner, are eligible for full reimbursement of registration fees.

Test Day Policies

To be admitted into the testing center on exam day, examinees are required to bring with them a government-issued ID displaying their photograph and signature, such as an unexpired driver's license or passport.

Some accommodations are provided on test day without prior approval for examinees who need them, such as wheelchair access, enlarged font, and medication breaks, but other special accommodations for those with disabilities or mothers who are nursing, must be requested in advance with the appropriate documentation. If accommodations are not available at a given site, instruction will be provided at sites where they are available.

Generally speaking, the list of items that a test taker may bring with them into the testing center is very limited. However, test takers may bring certain items to the testing center, but they must be stored in a locked storage area provided on-site or in one's vehicle; they are not necessarily allowed into the testing room. Examinees should also keep in mind that available storage space may be limited. And those items are as follows:

  • Cell phones
  • Jewelry, wallets, or purses
  • Calculators
  • Food and drink
  • Written materials of any kind
  • Headwear
  • Testing aids not preapproved or required by the testing site

Prohibited items include:

  • Tobacco products of any kind
  • Visitors
  • Any type of weaponry

While this list is comprehensive of most items that a test taker can't bring on test day, it's not necessarily complete, and examinees should communicate with their testing center in advance should they have any questions.

Exam Preparation

Finally, among the best strategies a test taker can use to prepare for the NYSTCE test for teaching assistant certification is to give oneself plenty of time in advance to prepare. Since test takers have up to one year to take the exam after registering, this should give test takers enough time to prepare for the exam. However, the best strategy is to have confidence. By utilizing the best practice tests and study guides for one's test and the resources such as flashcards, prospective teaching assistants are sure to achieve the best possible score on the exam.


Fortunately, many resources are available to aid a prospective teaching assistant in preparing for the NYSTCE assessment of teaching assistant skills (ATAS) 095 test. Among these is access to a good NYSTCE ATAS study guide, such as the preparation guide made available at no cost through various websites. Additional study guides are also available for a fee online. These study guides cover the content that will be on the exam as well as the format. Study guides also usually include study strategies that can help examinees prepare for test day.

NYSTCE ATAS (095) Practice Test

Taking advantage of NYSTCE Assessment of Teaching Assistant Skills practice tests enables a prospective teaching assistant to directly review the material covered by the exam, while also measuring their progress on reviewing the material over time. This allows a test taker to prioritize areas where further preparation is needed. As with finding a good NYSTCE study guide, test takers can also gain access to helpful and comprehensive NYSTCE ATAS practice tests online.

Frequently Asked Questions

  • What preparation materials are available for ATAS?

    Preparation for the NYSTCE ATAS is painless if one takes advantage of the appropriate tools and resources. Thankfully, resources like study guides and practice tests are available to make preparation easy. Candidates can also take advantage of study groups, tutors, and flashcards to help prepare for the exam.

  • How do I become a teacher's aide in NY?

    In order to become a teacher's aide in the State of New York, prospective teaching assistants must gain licensure through the New York State Teacher Certification Examinations Assessment of Teaching Assistant Skills exam, the NYSTCE ATAS. Prospective teaching assistants must achieve a passing score of 220 on a graded scale in order to support classroom educators in public schools in the State of New York.

  • What is on the ATAS test?

    The New York State Teacher Certification Examinations Assessment of Teaching Assistant Skills exam consists four primary subsections: Reading, Writing, Mathematics, and Instructional Support. Each section covers skills deemed essential for teaching assistance to possess.

  • How many questions are on the ATAS?

    The NYSTCE ATAS exam consists of a 100 questions across four subsections, including Reading, Writing, Mathematics and Instructional Support. The four individual subsections each consist of 27 questions, except for the Instructional Support subsection, which consists of 19 questions.

  • What is on the ATSW exam?

    The New York State Teacher Certification Examinations Assessment of Teaching Skills- Written (ATSW) exam complements the NYSTCE ATAS exam and consists of 80 questions. It is composed of both multiple choice and one constructed response question.


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    Use this material to answer questions #1 through #2

    Captain Riley's story is pretty well summed up by the original title of his book, 'Slavery in North Africa.' While sailing from Gibraltar to the Cape Verde Islands, Riley's mid-sized merchant ship got lost in the fog and wrecked on the west Moroccan coast. Trapped on shore and having run out of both food and water, Riley and the surviving crew threw themselves on the mercy of some passing Berber tribesmen, who promptly enslaved and carried them off into the desert. Abused, underfed, and overworked, the captives were nearly dead when their masters sold them to an Arab trader, who bought the Americans on Riley's promise of ransom if they returned to the coast.

    Like many another adventure story, Captain Riley's tale was essentially ghost written. The real author was Riley's respectable friend, Anthony Bleecker. Starting with Riley's logbook, notes, and recollections, Bleecker applied his own 'talents, judgements, and erudition,' and in under a year came up with a narrative rich in emotional, and even spiritual themes. In the process, Bleecker spun what had actually been a fairly short adventure - the whole story, from the shipwreck until the survivors' return to Mogador, lasted barely two months, of which only the first three weeks were spent as slaves of the Berbers - into an epic tale of survival against both human and natural odds.

    An Authentic Narrative was hardly the first Christian enslavement account - though it was nearly the last to be set in North Africa. Other unlucky travellers had also been shipwrecked on the wild Atlantic coast of Africa, south of Agadir, and a few of them survived to produce similar accounts. The American woman Eliza Bradley, supposedly spent eight months in Berber hands, though some have questioned her account as 'a work of anonymous fiction that also plagiarizes large sections from James Riley's best-selling account'.

    Davis, Robert. (2011, October 4). Slavery in North Africa - the Famous Story of Captain James Riley.

    Retrived September 30, 2020, from


  1. In the second paragraph, which word is synonymous to ''erudition''?
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  2. In the last sentence, what does the word ''plagiarizes'' mean?
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  3. Use this material to answer question #3

    Jericho has been a very unruly student for a few days now. He was taking the food items from his classmates' lunch boxes forcibly from them. His teacher, Ms. Jenkins _____ him to be more considerate of his classmates. Right after the teacher's sermon, Jericho gave back the food items to his classmates. It seems that Jericho followed his teacher's _____.

  4. Fill the blanks with the appropriate words.
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  5. Use this material to answer question #4

    In an age of data retrieval, when just about anything ever printed can be seen online and is eternally preserved there, and when modern anxiety is fueled by too much information, we would do well to remember that the loss of books and artifacts was catastrophic until very recently in human history. The great library of the Ptolemies at Alexandria was burnt by the Romans in the first century AD, a legendary collection of ancient wisdom whose loss haunted Renaissance scholarship. European savants of the 15th and 16th centuries were, in the midst of their astonishing revival of classical writing, all too aware of what was irrecoverable and even unknown to them.

    Sir Thomas Browne (1605-1682) was such a scholar. His vast expertise in areas as diverse as embryology, anatomy, ornithology, ancient history and literature, etymology, local archaeology, and pharmacy, and his participation in the Baconian programme to rescue learning from the misapprehensions and erasures that had accumulated since the fall of man, made him especially sensitive to such losses. Musaeum Clausum, a small tract both playful and melancholy, seems to coalesce early-modern feelings about the unavailability of precious intellectual treasure.

    Musaeum Clausum (the hidden library) is a fake catalogue of a collection that contained books, pictures, and artifacts. Such collections (and their elaborate indices) were a common phenomenon from about 1500 to 1700 and after. Gentlemen and the nobility collected as a matter of polite engagement with knowledge and as a way of displaying wealth and learning; savants made arrays of plants, animals, and minerals as museums or 'thesauruses' of the natural world to record and organise their findings; imperial and monarchical collections were princely in their glamour, rarity, and sheer expenditure: these might contain natural-historical specimens but also trinkets and souvenirs from far-flung places, curiosities of nature and art, and historically significant items. For example, taxidermically preserved basilisks shared room with a thorn from Christ's crown and feathered headdresses and weapons belonging to native American tribes. Browne takes these traditions of assemblage and makes a catalogue of marvelous things that have disappeared.

    The catalogue of Browne's lost museum speaks of fragmentation, scattering, and loss, but also of eccentricity and comedy. Among its documents are letters and works by Aristotle, Ovid, and Cicero, and an account of Hannibal's expedition through Alps 'far more particular than that of Livy' that purports to tell what sort of vinegar he used to split the stones in his way. Perhaps the most significant item among these is Seneca's epistles to St Paul, a correspondence which, if it existed, would answer the yearning of Christian Stoics. The pictures in this collection either display tremendous technical skill or depict remarkable events. One picture is a 'large submarine piece' showing the bottom of the Mediterranean and the seagrass growing there; another describes a moonlight battle between the Florentines and the Turks; others are snow or ice 'pieces' that show a remarkable and alien landscape populated by exotic arctic animals; still others show the great fire of Constantinople, the siege of Vienna, the sack of Fundi, and the Treaty of Cologne, as well as portraits, caricatures, and even the dogs of Sultan Achmet. The curiosities are probably the most peculiar and random group in the collection, everything from an ostrich's egg engraved with a scene from the battle of Alcazar, to a moist stone that cures fevers, to a ring found in the belly of a fish (reputed to be the ring of the Doge of Venice with which he annually weds the sea), the mummified body of one Father Crispin of Toulouse, and 'Batrachomyomachia, or the Homerican battle between frogs and mice, neatly described upon the chisel bone of a large pike's jaw'.


    Preston, Claire. (2012, February 21). Lost Libraries.

    Retrieved: September 30, 2020, from


  6. In the first sentence of the passage, the word ''catastrophic'' means
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  7. Choose the appropriate word to complete the following sentence. Either the monkeys or the eagle _____ going to take a bath right now.

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  8. Which of the following sentences is in the past perfect tense?

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  9. Choose the appropriate tense to complete the following sentence. My examination will be tomorrow morning so I _____ my notes an hour from now.

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  10. What is 80% of 40?

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  11. What is the product of 5/7 * 3/8?

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  12. Which of the following is an improper fraction?

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  13. A pair of rubber shoes is being sold for $80 dollars. The store offers a 15% discount for all items. How much do you have to pay after applying the discount?

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  14. Which of the following is a complete sentence?

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  15. In the class you are teaching, you let four students give an example of a compound sentence. Of the four responses, which one is improperly written?
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  16. Which of the following is correctly written?

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  17. Which of the following shows proper use of punctuation?

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