The Illinois State Board of Education Basic Skills Test (#300) has been replaced with an expanded basic skills test that is now called TEST OF ACADEMIC PROFICIENCY – TAP (#400). TAP is only offered as a computer based test at Pearson-Vue testing sites. It is offered by appointment, year, round, whenever the testing site is open (Monday through Saturday) on a first-come, first-served basis. (A paper-based test will no longer be offered.) Teacher candidates are given five (5) chances to pass this new test regardless of how many times they have taken the old Basic Skills version.
Teacher Candidates with ACT composite scores of 22 or higher or with SAT scores of 1030 or higher may apply to the Illinois State Board of Education to use their ACT or SAT scores in lieu of the TAP test. The full ACT test must be taken including the writing component. The ACT or SAT must be passed within five years of applying to enter a program.
All teacher and school service personnel candidates must pass the Basic Skills or the Test of Academic Proficiency to enter any teacher education program in Illinois. This includes all initial and advanced licensure programs.
GSU offers a series of workshops to assist candidates in preparing to take the TAP. Click here to register for the next workshop (January 2013).
A passing score on the TAP is a state requirement for all Illinois certification programs. The Test Preparation site was created to help teacher education students study for and pass the TAP. The Prep system is an interactive, web-based curriculum that contains content, examples, and questions for all three sub-areas of the test (Reading Comprehension, Language Arts, and Mathematics). The Prep site includes a Learning Survey, which is designed to assist you in identifying what areas are your strengths as well as the areas in which you still need to work. We hope you find this online curriculum helpful in your pursuit of passing the Illinois Test of Academic Proficiency.
Note: The Illinois State Board of Education also has a computer-administered practice test called the Diagnostic Practice Test to help you determine if you are ready to take the TAP. It can be found at http://www.il.nesinc.com/
Preparing for the TAP - Additional Resources
What will be on the Test of Academic Proficiency?
Is there preparation assistance for me?
*Please note that some links reference Basic Skills instead of TAP. These links are still valid. TAP is an expanded version of Basic Skills. Many of the TAP test items will be the same as Basic Skills test items.
There are several resources available to you:
Other practice tests:
- Purchase a study guide – The Best Teachers’ Test Preparation for ICTS, from REA – Research & Education Association in bookstores or on-line at www.rea.com. This book is a study guide and a practice test for both the Illinois Basic Skills and the Elementary Education Content Test. A CD is included – timed practice exams with instant scoring.
- Other study guides:
Other helpful resources: