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Overview of the Praxis Core Writing Test

Praxis Writing: the Basics

Length: 100 minutes, three sections
  • Section 1: Multiple choice | 40 minutes
  • Section 2: Argumentative essay | 30 minutes
  • Section 3: Explanatory essay | 30 minutes
The Core Academic Skills for Educators Test in Writing measures academic skills in writing needed to prepare successfully for a career in education. All skills assessed have been identified as needed for college and career readiness, in alignment with the Common Core State Standards for Writing.

What's on the test?

Multiple choice questions

This section of the test is divided into four parts:
  • Error identification
  • Sentence correction
  • Revision in context
  • Research skills
Identify errors: These questions ask you to recognize errors in mechanics, in structural and grammatical relationships, and in idiomatic expressions or word choice. You will also be asked to identify sentences that are free of errors.
Correct sentences: These questions ask you to select the best way to restate a certain phrase or sentence; in some cases, the phrase or sentence is correct as stated.
  • Note: You won't be tested on formal grammatical terminology! In our system, we'll use some grammar vocabulary to help explain concepts, but that vocabulary will not appear on the test itself.
Revise paragraphs: These questions, also know as revision-in-context questions, ask you to recognize how a passage can be strengthened through editing and revision. As you work through a short passage, you'll consider development, organization, word choice, style, tone, and the conventions of standard written English. In some cases, the indicated portion of a passage will be most effective as it is already expressed (correct as written), so no change will be necessary.
Research skills: These questions ask you to recognize effective research strategies, recognize the different elements of a citation, recognize information relevant to a particular research task, and assess the credibility of sources.


The Praxis Core Writing test contains two essay tasks which assess your ability to write effectively in a limited period of time.

Argumentative essay (30 minutes)

This essay task will prompt you to discuss the extent to which you agree or disagree with a commonly held opinion.

Source-based essay (30 minutes)

This essay task will prompt you to extract information from two provided sources to identify important concerns related to an issue.

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