Test Information Guide

Overview and Test Objectives
Field 02: Early Childhood

Test Overview

Table outlining the test format, number of questions, time, and passing score.
Format Computer-based test (CBT); 100 multiple-choice questions, 2 open-response items
Number of Questions
  • Subarea I: 30–32 multiple-choice questions
  • Subarea II: 18–20 multiple-choice questions
  • Subarea III: 49–51 multiple-choice questions
  • Subarea IV: 2 open-response items
Time 4 hours (does not include 15-minute CBT tutorial)
Passing Score 240

The Massachusetts Tests for Educator Licensure (MTEL) are designed to measure a candidate's knowledge of the subject matter contained in the test objectives for each field. The MTEL are aligned with the Massachusetts educator licensure regulations and, as applicable, with the standards in the Massachusetts curriculum frameworks.

The test objectives specify the content to be covered on the test and are organized by major content subareas. The chart below shows the approximate percentage of the total test score derived from each of the subareas.

The test assesses a candidate's proficiency and depth of understanding of the subject at the level required for a baccalaureate major according to Massachusetts standards. Candidates are typically nearing completion of or have completed their undergraduate work when they take the test.

Pie chart of approximate test weighting.

Sub area I 25%, Sub area II 15%, Sub area III 40%, and Sub area IV 20%.

Test Objectives

Table outlining test content and subject weighting by sub area and objective.
Subareas Range of Objectives Approximate Test Weighting
I Knowledge of Child Development 01–02 25%
II Knowledge of Children's Literature and the Writing Process 03–04 15%
III Core Knowledge in the Content Areas 05–07 40%
IV Integration of Knowledge and Understanding 08 20%

*The open-response items may relate to topics covered in any of the subareas.


Subarea I–Knowledge of Child Development

Objective 0001: Understand child development from prenatal through the early elementary years.
Objective 0002: Understand child development and learning in students with disabling conditions or exceptionalities.


Subarea II–Knowledge of Children's Literature and the Writing Process1

Objective 0003: Understand children's literature, including genres, literary elements, and literary techniques.
0004: Understand principles and concepts of writing for various purposes.

1. Knowledge of the following content will be measured on a separate Foundations of Reading test for all prospective Early Childhood, Elementary, and Special Education teachers: 1) reading theory, research, and practice; 2) development of an oral and reading vocabulary; 3) theories on the relationship between beginning writing and reading; 4) approaches and practices for developing skills in using writing tools; and 5) theories of first- and second-language acquisition and development.


Subarea III–Core Knowledge in the Content Areas

Objective 0005: Understand principles and concepts of mathematics.
Objective 0006: Understand principles and concepts of history and social science.
Objective 0007: Understand principles and concepts of science and technology/engineering.


Subarea IV–Integration of Knowledge and Understanding

Objective 0008: Prepare an organized, developed analysis that relates child development to two or more of the following: language arts, mathematics, history and social science, and science.