Arizona Educators Proficiency Assessments (AEPA) is a group of standardized tests developed by State Board of Educator Certification (SBEC) of Arizona and is administered by educational testing centers. These tests are required to be taken by the individuals, for achieving teaching credential and certifications for administrative positions in schools of the state. The test is conducted to maintain the educational standards. It ensures that the teachers possess the sufficient pedagogical skills and are well equipped with respective subject knowledge.
The AEPA tests can be categorized into the following categories-
Professional tests- These tests aim to gauge pedagogical skills and knowledge. It is required to be taken by all the applicants of the teaching certification. There are three levels of this test- Early childhood, Elementary, and Secondary. There are 100 multiple choice questions and three written assignments in this test.
Subject Knowledge tests- These tests examine the knowledge in specific subjects. One may requires to take one or more subject knowledge tests for certification. These tests are available in areas- art, biology, business, chemistry, childhood education, earth science, economics, English, French, geography, German, health, history, education media, general science, mathematics, language arts, social science, physics, music, political science and special educations. Most of these tests have 100 multiple choice questions and a written assignment. The subject tests of French, Spanish, and German have 55 multiple choice questions, one written performance test, and an oral performance assessment.
Constitutions of the United States and Arizona test- This test is required to be taken by the candidates who have applied for teacher or school administrator certifications. It examines the knowledge of provisions and principles of the constitutions of United States of America and Arizona. The test contains 10 multiple choice questions.
Administrator tests- There are administrator tests for the supervisor, superintendent, and principal positions. Theses are required to be taken by the candidates who have applied for respective administrative position. The administrator tests for principal and superintendent positions consist of two sessions. There are 100 multiple choice questions and four written performance assessments in the administrator tests of principal and superintendent. The administrator test for supervisor position contains 100 multiple choice questions and one written assessment and is conducted in a single session.
Basic Skills test- This test is required for joining Arizona educator preparation programs. It is not a requirement for teaching certification. It is based on testing of three skill areas- reading comprehension, writing and mathematics. The reading comprehension and mathematical sections have 42 multiple choice questions. There are 42 multiple choice questions and a written assignment in the writing section.
The applicant must be holding a bachelor’s degree for teaching certification. The number and selection of tests depend upon the certification applied for. Most of the tests are completed in a single session. However, some of the certifications may require more than one session to complete.
Each AEPA test is awarded scaled score ranging from 100 to 300. The passing score is set to be 240.
The tests are conducted on fixed dates in a year. Subject knowledge tests and ‘Constitutions of the United States and Arizona’ test are conducted in morning sessions. Professional knowledge tests, basic skills test and supervisor test are conducted in afternoon sessions. The principal and superintendent tests are full day exams having two sessions both in morning as well as afternoon. The registration for the test can be done by Internet, phone, or mail. The registration by phone is available only in emergency periods. Similarly, only regular registration can be done by mail.
The registration fee for the test is $35. The fees for Professional knowledge tests, Subject Knowledge tests, Constitutions of the United States and Arizona test, Superintendent test, Supervisor test, Principal test, each Basic skills sub-test are $80, $70, $40, $230, $230, $120, and $25 respectively. There are additional charges for late registration, emergency registration, change of registration etc.