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Teacher Assessments

Now accepting alternative content knowledge testing. Please visit the Professional Educator Standards Board for details.

Washington has two testing requirements: basic skills and content area testing, as described below. The testing requirements must be successfully completed within one calendar year of issuance of the first residency teacher temporary permit for first-time, out-of-state candidates.

Basic Skills Test Requirement (WEST-B)

Washington Educator Skills Test – Basic (WEST-B). Must successfully complete each subtest for reading, writing and mathematics. Use report code #399 to have your test score sent to OSPI electronically. Test information and registration is available online.

In lieu of the WEST-B, candidates from outside the state may submit an official score report verifying successful completion of one of the following:

  • CBEST (used in California and Oregon), or
  • NES Essential Academic Skills Test (used in Oregon), or
  • Praxis 1 - See acceptable Praxis I tests and qualifying scores; or
  • NBPTS - Individuals who hold a valid National Board for Professional Teaching Standards (NBPTS) certificate are exempt from the WEST-B.

If completing the WEST-B, use report code #399 to have your score sent to OSPI.

Applicants may substitute a passing score on one or more sections of the SAT or ACT for the equivalent passing scores on the WEST-B. The adopted passing scores for SAT and ACT are listed below.

Cut Score Comparison Table
Math PASS 515 22
Reading PASS 500 22
Writing PASS 490 8 (2/2005 to 8/2015)
23 (9/2015)

  • The SAT writing test was added in 2005. This means no writing score will be accepted for SAT before 2005.
  • SAT Score reports prior to October 2004 will have "verbal" scores which are the critical reading scores. If the score reports are from October 1996 to September 2004, then the verbal scores are the same as the reading scores beyond 2004. Use those scores to see if the candidate has satisfied the requirement.
  • SAT scores that equal or exceed the cut scores in the table above meet the entrance criteria, regardless of when the test was taken.
  • SAT October 2004 and later score reports will have critical reading, mathematics and writing scores listed if the candidate took the tests.
  • All ACT scores that equal or exceed the cut scores in the table above meet the entrance criteria, regardless of when the test was taken.
  • ACT Writing was added Feb. 2005 so no ACT writing score will be accepted before Feb. 2005.
  • ACT Reading was added Oct. 1989. No ACT reading score will be accepted before Oct. 1989.
  • ACT Writing subsection was updated and a new version was administered September 2015. (see score as of 9/2015)

WEST-E/NES tests
The following endorsement areas require completion of the WEST-E/NES or approved alternative tests.

WEST-E/NES Test information and registration is available online.

  • Agriculture Education
  • Bilingual Education*
  • Biology
  • Business and Marketing Education
  • Chemistry
  • Dance
  • Earth and Space Science
  • Early Childhood Education
  • Early Childhood Special Education
  • Elementary Education
  • English Language Arts
  • English Language Learner
  • Family Consumer Science Education
  • Health/Fitness
  • History
  • Latin Language
  • Library Media
  • Mathematics
  • Middle Level Humanities
  • Middle Level Math
  • Middle Level Science
  • Music: Choral
  • Music: General (neither Choral nor Instrumental)
  • Music: Instrumental
  • Physics
  • Reading
  • Science
  • Social Studies
  • Special Education
  • Technology Education
  • Theatre Arts
  • Traffic Safety Education
  • Visual Arts
  • World Languages**
  • World Language Latin

*Individuals will not only need to complete the WEST-E test in bilingual education but will also need to complete the ACTFL Writing Proficiency Test and the ACTFL Oral Proficiency Interview at the Advanced-Mid level in a world language area. ACTFL does not administer tests for Latin. For Latin, a candidate must take the new WEST-E: DWL and the WEST-E: Latin.  http://www.languagetesting.com/

**In addition to the designated world languages WEST-E test above, applicants must complete the American Council on the Teaching of Foreign Languages (ACTFL) Writing Proficiency Test (WPT) and Oral Proficiency Interview (OPI) in the specific world language, scoring Advanced-Low or higher. Please visit ACTFL at http://www.languagetesting.com/

Out-of-State Tests
If you are an out-of-state certificated educator who is seeking certification in Washington your passing score from your state’s teacher certification exam may be used to meet Washington’s content knowledge test requirement.

If you have documentation which clearly shows you passed the exam, you may email, fax, or mail a copy of those results to the Professional Certification Office at Office of Superintendent of Public Instruction.

If you took a Pearson administered assessment in another state and would like to have your test results reported to the Office of Superintendent of Public Instruction electronically you can print and submit a Request Form.

Mail the form and required payment directly to Pearson at the address on the form. Do not mail the form to Office of Superintendent of Public Instruction.

National Board for Professional Teaching Standards (NBPTS) Certificate Exemptions
Individuals who hold a valid NBPTS certificate in a subject area or grade level comparable to one of the Washington endorsement areas are exempt from testing requirements for that endorsement area. (See NBPTS Exemption).

Additional information regarding basic skills and endorsement test information click here: http://assessment.pesb.wa.gov/



   Updated 5/2/2016

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