Praxis II Biology Content Essay Exam by ETS

For potential high school biology teachers the Biology: Content Essays exam is a one hour test in which the capability of the examinee to understand and teach biology is evaluated. The exam presents three essay questions regarding the following topics:

  • Organism Biology and Ecology
  • Molecular and Cellular Biology
  • Classical Genetics and Evolution

These areas of biology are equal to the subject matter learned in beginning college courses in biology. The structure and reason of the components of molecular genetics, the structure and activities of cells, and the features of chemicals as the basis for life forms will cover the essay question pertaining to Molecular and Cellular Biology. The topics in question may contain heredity, disorders, and proof of evolution, to name a few, for the category of Genetics and Evolution. The role of organisms in biology and ecology covers the third essay.

Each essay question will evaluate different skills of the examinee, and each question may be composed of numerous parts, in addition to covering the different aspects of biology. In one essay, the examinee will show the capability to begin and conduct experiments and analyze the resulting data. Another essay will experiment the examinee's skill to understand scientific concepts and biological systems, and his or her understanding of the use of models in science. The examinee must show knowledge of the way in which science affects society and how the laws and theorems of science are appropriate, in the final essay.

All three essays will be uniformly scored on a scale of 0 − 5, with a score of 5 being the high score. Essay that shows outstanding understanding of science theories and vocabulary, using a sufficient amount of science terms and suitable examples and proof to wholly answer the essay question is awarded to a score of 5. Essays will receive a score of 4 for confidently answering the question using the correct vocabulary and using good examples. Essays that show average knowledge of science, using only some appropriate vocabulary is given a score of 3. Essays that obtain a score of 2 display a nominal amount of scientific knowledge and may not use suitable terminology or examples. Negligible amounts of knowledge, with no examples or scientific vocabulary are given a score of 1. Essays that are left blank or do not address the question are given 0.