What is the Praxis Core and why is it a nightmare for some?

photo of stressed woman with her head down at her laptop

From our Educator Guest Blogger Series

Passing the Praxis Core is the golden ticket to becoming a certified teacher in the United States. When you receive your passing scores, it's a day of rejoicing, but for some, it's a day of disappointment.

The Praxis Core is administered by the Educational Testing Services (ETS). The test measures academic skills in Reading, Writing, and Mathematics. They're designed to provide comprehensive assessments that measure the skills and content knowledge of candidates entering the teacher preparation programs (ETS, 2023). The goal of the Praxis Core is to ensure that teacher candidates have the knowledge and subject-specific content knowledge required for effective teaching.

Becoming a teacher is not a walk through the park. Educators must go through several channels to become certified teachers. When one attempts Praxis Core, some are successful, and others are not. Micah, a student aspiring to become an African American History Teacher, experienced the disappointment of not passing the Praxis Core during his first attempt. This setback could hinder his admission into the Teacher Education Program. For many students, the experience of taking the Praxis Core can be challenging and stressful, similar to taking a flight through turbulence for the first time. The pressure from passing the Praxis Core is a prerequisite for becoming a certified teacher.

Micah's story illustrates the determination and effort required to overcome the challenges posed by the Praxis Core. Despite the initial setback, Micah sought help from his professors and engaged in various tutoring sessions, workshops, and online resources to prepare for the retake of the Praxis Core. Miach adopted effective study strategies, such as understanding the test content, organizing study materials, planning study time, and practicing key concepts (ETS, 2023).

In the end, Micah's perseverance and dedication paid off as he successfully passed the Praxis Core during his sophomore year. For future test-takers, take time to study, follow ETS strategies and tips, seek help when needed, and be positive. Praxis Assessments is portrayed as a hurdle to becoming a certified teacher. Still, with the proper preparation and mindset, individuals can overcome this challenge and pursue their passion for teaching.


Chasidy Graham is an Early Childhood Assistant Professor at Morris College. She received a Bachelor of Science degree in Family and Consumer Sciences from South Carolina State University in Orangeburg, South Carolina, a Master of Arts degree in Leadership in Teaching with a concentration in Supervision and Administration from Notre Dame of Maryland University in Baltimore, Maryland and a Master of Education degree in Education Management from Strayer University in Concord, North Carolina. Before joining the Morris College faculty, she worked as an Early Childhood Adjunct Professor at Voorhees University, an Early Childhood Teacher, and a Family and Consumer Sciences Teacher in various school districts. During her teaching career, she has fostered engagement and facilitated authentic learning opportunities for her students while supporting their social, emotional, and academic growth and development. She is also a Teaching & Learning Ph.D. student at the University of South Carolina. Chasidy is inspired by the late Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. quote, Life's most persistent and urgent question is, "What are you doing for others?"


Note: This guest blog does not necessarily reflect the views of ETV Education.