Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Essay Exams, The Basic Skills Test, & "Writing on the Spot: Essay Exams" Workshop

The EIU Writing Center doesn’t only provide feedback about academic papers or scholarship essays. Writing consultants there can help you with any document you've drafted, or they can help you get the writing process started by having a conversation about the assignment and brainstorming ideas.

As the DEN has informed readers about recently, to be accepted into any teacher education programs at Eastern, students must first take and pass all parts of the Basic Skills Test. Because most programs have become more rigid with class scheduling during the sophomore and junior years of college, people recommend that students take the test in their first year or sophomore year of college.

What does this have to do with writing, you might ask?

A lot since there are writing assignments on the exam.

The Basic Skills test is required for all Education majors because it is used to asses that prospective teachers have the analytical and communication skills that they can implement in the classroom. This test consists mainly of essay tests. So being prepared and knowing the process of writing a timed essay is crucial for success on the Basic Skills Test. Getting ample practice before the big day of the test is very important, especially since students can take the test no more than five times.
On Thursday, October 6, 2011, the Writing Center will provide a workshop titled "Writing on the Spot: Essay Exams" at 3:30 p.m. in the Writing Center (3110 Coleman Hall). This interactive session will focus on strategies that will help students on the typical essay exams they write in college, and it also could help Education majors who are concerned about the Basic Skills Test.

In addition, last spring this blog provided some advice about the challenge of in-class/timed essays in the post "Essay Exam Writing Tips."

Mid-term exams are approaching and the Basic Skills Test is important if you're an Ed major, so checking out the link above and attending the workshop tomorrow will better prepare you for what's ahead.

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