Test Information Guide

Overview and Test Objectives
Field 07: English

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: 63–65 multiple-choice questions
  • Subarea II: 20–22 multiple-choice questions
  • Subarea III: 14–16 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 51%, Sub area II 17%, Sub area III 12%, 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 Literature and Language 01–09 51%
II Rhetoric and Composition 10–12 17%
III Reading Theory, Research, and Instruction 13–14 12%
IV Integration of Knowledge and Understanding 15 20%

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


Subarea I–Literature and Language

Objective 0001: Understand American literature from the colonial period through the end of the nineteenth century.
Objective 0002: Understand American literature from the twentieth century to the present.
Objective 0003: Understand the literature of Great Britain from the Anglo-Saxon period through the Romantic period.
Objective 0004: Understand the literature of Great Britain from the Victorian period to the present.
Objective 0005: Understand literature from the ancient world to the fifteenth century.
Objective 0006: Understand world literature from the fifteenth century to the present.
Objective 0007: Understand the characteristics of various genres and types of literature.
Objective 0008: Understand literary theory and criticism.
Objective 0009: Understand the structure and development of the English language.


Subarea II–Rhetoric and Composition

Objective 0010: Understand principles of rhetoric as they apply to various forms and purposes of oral and written communication.
Objective 0011: Understand the composition process.
Objective 0012: Understand written language conventions.


Subarea III–Reading Theory, Research, and Instruction

Objective 0013: Understand language acquisition, reading processes, and research-based theories relating to reading.
Objective 0014: Understand effective, research-based reading instruction and the role of children's literature and young adult literature in promoting reading proficiency.


Subarea IV–Integration of Knowledge and Understanding

Objective 0015: Prepare an organized, developed analysis on a topic related to one or more of the following: literature and language; rhetoric and composition; reading theory, research, and instruction.