# National Board Certification: Science (Early Adolescence)

The National Board for Professional Teaching Standards (NBPTS) Certification aims to develop, retain, and recognize accomplished educators while encouraging school improvement nationwide.

Board certification is available in 25 certificate areas, spanning 16 disciplines from pre-kindergarten through 12th grade. Obtaining National Board Certification is optional, but with certification comes recognition as an expert in their educational field, providing financial and career enhancement.

This page will discuss certification in teaching Science to children ages 11-15.

## Eligibility

To qualify to take the examination, you must complete a minimum of 3 years of employment as a teacher. You can begin the application process before you have completed the three years of employment, but you cannot finish the certification process until you have accumulated those three years of teaching experience.

You must also have a bachelor’s degree and a valid state teaching license to be eligible for certification. These are things you must have before the registration process begins.

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## Certification Components

The Science for Early Adolescence exam is split into four sections, called “components.” All four components are required for certification:

• Component 1: Content Knowledge. This is the computer-based assessment where you demonstrate your understanding of knowledge and pedagogical practices in your content area.
• Component 2: Differentiation in Instruction. This portion of the examination is a portfolio entry that focuses on differentiation to instruction. You will provide work examples that demonstrate the growth and knowledge advancement of individual students with commentary on your analysis of their instructional choices.
• Component 3: Teaching Practice and Learning Environment. This portion of the examination is a portfolio entry that focuses on teaching practices and learning environments. Video recordings of you in the classroom demonstrating your classroom engagement along with written commentary explaining the video contents will be required. In the written portion, you will need to analyze and reflect on the video contents and on how you interacted with the students.
• Component 4: Effective and Reflective Practitioner. This portion of the examination is a portfolio entry on effective and reflective practices. You will be required to demonstrate your skills in developing and applying the knowledge of your students to create the greatest impact on their learning and growth in scientific knowledge. You will need to describe and demonstrate your collaborative efforts in advancing student learning.

The testing window for Component 1 ranges from the beginning of March to the middle of June. The submission window for your portfolio components goes from the beginning of April to the middle of May.

## Details of Component 1: The Exam

Component 1, which is the computer-based assessment, is timed at 3 hours, with one 10-minute break between the selected-response section and the constructed-response section.

You are allowed 75 minutes for the 45 selected-response questions and 30 minutes for each of the three constructed-response questions.

### Selected-Response Section

For each question in this section, you are asked to select the best answer. Try to answer every question—guessing is not penalized.

The selected-response questions are split into three sections.

• Knowledge of Science Practices and Context (9 questions): The questions in this section cover the nature of science, understanding of science, and context of science.
• Knowledge of Science Content (27 questions): The questions in this section cover Earth and space science, life science, and physical science.
• Curriculum, Instruction, and Learning Environment (9 questions): The questions in this section cover crosscutting principles, assessing and addressing preconceptions, and safety.

### Constructed-Response Section

There are three exercises in the constructed-response section, and you are given 30 minutes to complete each one.

A scenario or student profile is presented for you to consider, and then you must answer the prompts relating to the information. It is important to only answer the exact question that is being asked; any tangents or unrelated information in your answer will not be evaluated. For example, if you are asked to provide three examples, do not provide four examples. You will waste valuable time, and the assessors will only evaluate the first three examples.

Exercise 1: Data Analysis
Read a description of a student-designed experiment, study the collection of data collected by the student(s), and analyze the conclusion provided by the student(s) that pertains to the experiment. This exercise contains one prompt.

Exercise 2: Contexts of Science
Describe a scientific event or discovery, and then hold a discussion about the scientific knowledge necessary to comprehend the event or discovery, explain how one other science-related discipline is related, and describe how society has been affected by the event or discovery. This exercise contains one prompt.

Exercise 3: Development of Scientific Concepts
Evaluate and describe a student’s conceptual understanding of scientific concepts and describe instruction that would guide the student toward understanding the scientific concept in a more accepted way. This exercise contains one prompt.

## Registration

Before you can register for the components, you will need to submit a Candidate Eligibility Verification Form. You will also be required to submit a copy of your valid teaching license at this time.

Registration for the exam can be completed online using the National Board Candidate Management System. The testing and submission of each component can be spread out over a period of 36 months.

### When will I receive my test scores?

You will receive your test scores around the second week of December.

By Eric Richter

Eric is the Product Development Manager responsible for developing and updating the Mometrix Teacher Certification and K-12 products. Eric has a bachelor’s degree in Sociology and a master’s of education in Teaching ESOL.

by Mometrix Test Preparation | This Page Last Updated: January 16, 2023