The Praxis test is an exam administered by the Educational Testing Service (ETS) that is used to evaluate teachers' teaching skills and capabilities. It is divided into Praxis 1, which tests core teaching areas, and Praxis 2, also known as Praxis Subject Assessments, which evaluate competence in specific subjects. Praxis scores are either pass or fail.
Praxis Passing Scores
The Praxis score report tells test takers whether they passed or failed and gives additional information about their test performance. It shows the score range for those who took the exam, highlighting the 25th percentile to 75th percentile and where your score falls within that range. It also compares your score to the qualifying score, which you need to meet to pass. Qualifying scores are determined by individual states, meaning you could qualify in one state but not another with the same score. The score report then indicates how many points you earned out of the total possible points in each test category.
How Many Right Answers Do I Need to Pass?
Because qualifying scores differ and not all questions are worth an equal number of points, there is not a set number of questions that you need to answer correctly to get a passing score on the Praxis. Some editions of the Praxis Test are considered more difficult than others and are scaled accordingly, meaning you won't need to answer as many questions correctly if your edition of the test is more difficult than average.
How Is the Praxis Scored?
Understanding how a Praxis score is calculated can be difficult at first, given that there are different types of questions and scores. The Praxis exam is broken down into different sections based on question format. There are two types of Praxis questions: selected-response and constructed-response. Each section of the Praxis is scored differently, but every section will give you a raw score. The raw score is then scaled according to the test's difficulty, giving you a converted score. Final converted scores for your Praxis Test results are between 100 and 200 for most versions of the test, with typical scores on most Praxis exams ranging from the 140s to the 180s. If your converted score meets the qualifying score established by your state or agency, you have passed. While your raw score is used to calculate your converted score, the raw score itself is not reported and has no value in and of itself; it is only a means to determine your converted score.
Selected-Response Section Scoring
Selected-response (SR) questions are the easiest to understand questions on the Praxis when it comes to scoring. For each of these questions for which you choose the correct answer from the given responses, you gain one raw score point. The total number of questions in this section you answer correctly is, therefore, your raw score total for the section. Selected-response section scores are often available immediately after completing the test.
Constructed-Response Section Scoring
Constructed-response (CR) questions, sometimes called essay questions, are a little less straightforward in their scoring, and they aren't always scored the same way. These questions will ask test takers to write their own answers rather than choose from offered responses, allowing for more nuance and explanation. Multiple scorers will review the responses you write and assign points from a total possible number based on each response. Individual questions in this section are not necessarily weighted equally; some questions may be worth more possible points than others. Your raw points earned are totaled to determine your raw score for the constructed-response section.
Mixed-Format Tests Scoring
Some Praxis exams will include both a selected-response questions section and a constructed-response questions section. These mixed-format exams involve multiple steps in calculating your Praxis score. First, your points are totaled to determine your raw point score in both the selected-response and constructed-response sections. This includes different questions potentially being weighted for different possible point values in the constructed-response section. Your raw scores for both sections are then added together to create your total raw score. Once your total raw score has been calculated, it is converted to your scaled score, based on the difficulty of the questions in your specific version of the test.
Mixed-format test scores are determined by a combination of human and computer scorers. The selected-response section is automatically graded by a computer, like normal. The constructed-response section is always graded by at least two scorers. One of these scorers is always a human, but the other can be a computer. ETS uses software that reads and analyzes responses, comparing them against past, scored answers to assess to what degree the submitted responses adequately match the scoring criteria. In the event that a computer score is not close to the one assigned by a human scorer, an additional human scorer will review the response.
Converting Praxis Raw Scores into Scaled Scores
The questions on the Praxis are not equally difficult, and, as such, the exact version of the test you take, referred to as the edition or form, may be more difficult or easier than another version of the same Praxis exam taken by someone in a different year. ETS is aware of this, which is why your raw score is converted into a scaled score. ETS can determine the relative difficulty of each Praxis Test edition and modify raw scores into scaled scores to reflect test takers' competence regardless of the difficulty of the test edition they take. This means, for example, that a score of 180 on a specific Praxis Test is always better than a score of 170 on a different edition of the same test, making score reports across different years comparable.
Praxis Score Release Dates
Once your Praxis Test is scored, ETS makes your Praxis score report available online by 5 p.m. Eastern Time the next Monday or Friday. Test availability and scoring can both come in waves, meaning that you may not get your score any earlier if you take your test on an earlier date in a set window of the test being offered.
ETS has an online calendar showing Praxis test dates and expected Praxis test score release dates.
How Long Does it Take to Get Praxis Scores?
Different Praxis Tests take different lengths of time for you to receive your Praxis Test results. You may be able to get machine-scored results from the selected-response questions section of your test as soon as you complete the test. However, constructed-response questions take longer to score. Praxis I Tests are scored more regularly than Praxis II exams because more people take the Praxis I. Overall, full score reports for most tests are generally made available within three to six weeks after the Praxis testing dates.
How Long Are Praxis Scores Valid?
ETS considers Praxis scores to be valid for 10 years, and your score report will indicate your highest score on any test in the last 10 years, in addition to the breakdown of the details from the most recent test you took. When ETS sends your scores, it sends your highest score that is still valid for each exam.
Praxis Requirements by State
Praxis state requirements vary, as does how different states actually use the Praxis. Some states require that the Praxis be taken and passed for teaching candidates to complete their certification and obtain a teaching license. A few states require that their own examinations be taken and passed instead for teacher certification and don't use the Praxis at all. Other states require teaching candidates to pass either a state exam or the Praxis test, or they require some combination of state and Praxis exams. For example, a state may require that a Praxis II Test be passed in the teacher's subject area in addition to passing a general state exam.
States also determine their own qualifying scores for the Praxis, the threshold your scaled score needs to meet to pass. This means that you can take the Praxis one time and pass in one state while failing in another state even though you use the same score in both. In effect, the individual state, not ETS, determines whether you actually passed the Praxis. Praxis certification tests can have different qualifying scores even in the same state.
Fortunately, ETS has compiled a list of Praxis requirements by state to help teaching candidates determine exactly which Praxis exams, whether Praxis I test or Praxis II examination, they need to take in their state, as well as the qualifying score for each exam in that state. The list includes 45 states plus D.C. and several U.S. territories, as well as some national organizations that accept Praxis scores. Once you select your state, ETS breaks down the state's requirements by licensure area.
Sending Your Praxis Scores
If you take the Praxis in some states or D.C., ETS will automatically send your Praxis scores to the state where you took the exam. You can select up to four recipients (whether state agencies or other organizations) to be sent your scores for free. Each recipient beyond the fourth requires a $50 fee. When sending Praxis scores, the score sent will be the highest score you've made on each individual test within the last 10 years, even if your most recent score was not your highest.
Elizabeth Schap, M.A. has taught high school biology, environmental science, and chemistry for over 15 years. She has written curricula for the National Aquarium in Baltimore and has served as an AP Environmental Science Reader for over 6 years. She passed the Praxis exams as a part of her teacher certification. Elizabeth earned an M.A. in Teaching from Towson University and a B.A. in Biology and Mass Communication Arts from Notre Dame of Maryland University.
Frequently Asked Questions
How do I know if I passed the Praxis?
Each test taker will receive their Praxis results via a score report in their online My Praxis Account. Some Praxis takers may be in a state with automatic score reporting and can receive that information from their state.
How many questions do I need to get right on the Praxis?
There is no absolute number of questions that a test taker needs to get right to get a Praxis passing score. This is because the difficulty of the multiple editions of the Praxis varies.
How long does it take to receive Praxis scores?
Praxis test takers can expect to receive their official score report 10-16 days after the last date of the testing window or their test date. This timeline depends on whether the test is offered on a continual basis.
How do I interpret my raw Praxis scores?
The raw Praxis scores are the total number of questions that were correctly answered on the test taker's test day. Because the official score is scaled, the raw score may not guarantee whether a test taker has passed or not.