Testing Requirements

Sitting on the lawn learning 

Basic Skills

What is the basic skills test?

All Washington teacher candidates are required to take the Washington Educator Skills Test – Basic (WEST-B) or approved alternatives for admission into a teacher preparation program.

The assessment includes three sub-tests: reading, writing, mathematics.

To register for the test and for more information please go to: www.west.nesinc.com. When you register for the WEST-B designate Gonzaga to receive your score report.  The School Code is 215.

What are the WEST-B alternatives?

Individuals seeking admission to an educator preparation program may submit evidence of taking an assessment deemed of equal rigor, such as the SAT or ACT, in lieu of the WEST-B. Candidates may substitute one or more sections of the SAT or ACT for the equivalent subsection on the WEST-B.

Admission to the teacher preparation program will not be considered if the applicant does not have an attempt on all three sections of the basic skills (reading, writing, and mathematics).

WEST-E/NES (Washington Educator Skills Test-Endorsements)

Teacher candidates seeking a Residency teacher certificate and all certificated teachers wishing to add an endorsement are required to pass a content test in each chosen endorsement area. The test is the WEST-E/NES To register for the test and for more information please go to: http://www.west.nesinc.com/.When you register for the WEST-E/NES designate Gonzaga to receive your score report.  The School Code is 215.



Teacher candidates seeking a residency teacher certificate are required to pass the edTPA.

The Teacher Performance Assessment (edTPA) is a subject-area-specific, performance-based portfolio assessment for pre-service teacher candidates, centered on student learning.

edTPA assesses the teaching of real students in actual classrooms. The edTPA will produce a profile of teaching practice to help novices identify relative strengths and weaknesses to guide ongoing professional growth and improvement.

The process requires candidates to actually demonstrate the knowledge and skills required to help all students learn in real classrooms. edTPA is intended to be used for teacher licensure and to support state and national program accreditation. edTPA complements existing entry-level assessments that focus on basic skills or subject-matter knowledge. It is comparable to the licensing exams that demand applications of skills in other professions, such as medical licensing exams, the architecture exam, or the bar exam in law.

edTPA is subject-specific with separate versions for Early Childhood, Elementary, Middle Childhood and Secondary licensure fields. edTPA includes a review of a teacher candidate's authentic teaching materials as the culmination of a teaching and learning process that documents and demonstrates each candidate's ability to effectively teach subject matter to all students.

An estimated $300 fee will be charged for the edTPA. That cost covers all edTPA assessment services, including a professional, qualified evaluator who has been trained to edTPA rubrics, expectations of performance, and standardized scoring procedures, and who will be monitored during scoring activities to maintain high quality.

Policy & Consent

Written consent must be obtained from the teacher candidate and parents of the classroom students prior to the beginning of the edTPA.  The Professional Educator Standards Board provides policy and forms to elicit signatures for consent at the following link: http://assessment.pesb.wa.gov/assessments/edtpa.