What is MTTC (Michigan Test for Teacher Certification)?

The Michigan Test for Teacher Satisfaction, or MTTC, is a particular endorsement exam for students wanting to earn a teaching certificate in Michigan. According to the Michigan Compiled Laws, you must undergo a testing program to acquire the Michigan teacher certification.

The exam ensures that every teacher is professionally ready and knowledgeable in the specific content areas to serve in Michigan schools. The MTTC is the only test that helps certify elementary level and subject-area requirements for teachers in Michigan.

The MTTC test comprises different subject-area exams you must take based on your specialization. Before receiving an endorsement in any content area, you must prove your potential through the test. This helps to ensure that all teachers in Michigan schools have attained the required professionalism and knowledge to serve students.

This article covers all the information about MTTC, such as its objectives, number of questions, scores, and tips on how you can pass the test and become a teacher in Michigan.

What is the Michigan Test for Teacher Certification (MTTC)?

The Michigan Test for Teacher Certification is a special exam used during the certification and licensing of teachers in Michigan. Different MTTC tests are designed to certify prospective teachers in specific fields. Before taking the tests, you need approval from the Michigan Department of Education (MDE) to specify the tests that reciprocate your profession.

To acquire a teaching certificate in Michigan, you must complete an MDE-approved teacher certification program and pass the respective MTTC test. The MTTC program incorporates pedagogical content knowledge and specific subject area tests. The tests are designed based on the specific content area you intend to specialize.

The test also involves world language tests to evaluate your abilities in using other languages. The world languages available in the MTTC test include French, Spanish, and Arabic. To pursue teacher certification in any of these areas, you must pass the Oral Proficiency Interview, also known as OPI.

Different MTTC tests are designed to certify prospective teachers in specific fields. Before taking the tests, you need to get approval from the MDE to specify the tests that reciprocate your profession.

For instance, if you want to pursue a career as an elementary or secondary school teacher or acquire an educational support role, you must get approval from the MDE about the MTTC tests required for certification.

MTTC Test Objectives

The MTTC test helps you to prove that you are a suitable candidate in a specific content area to help students flourish. Once you complete the tests, you get immediate certification to apply for teaching jobs in Michigan.

There are a variety of tests in every category that you need to choose from. Every subject area test is written based on specific requirements stated by the Michigan Department of Education.

You're given a specific calculator when taking an MTTC test in Physics, chemistry, or physical science. A similar technique is applied if you want to become a secondary mathematics teacher.

The MTTC test for Early Childhood Education covers specific areas to evaluate your qualifications. Prospective teachers who want to specialize in this area need to prove their potential in the areas of:

  •   Child development and learning
  •   Communication, language, and literacy development
  •   Learning in the content areas
  •   Professional development

Given that there are different types of students in class, certain MTTC tests evaluate your ability when dealing with different types of students. This helps to enhance uniform success among students in class.

Prospective teachers who want to focus on a specific content area also have a special certification exam to complete. The test helps to prove your potential in enabling students to succeed in specific fields.

MTTC Lengths and Format

The number of questions presented in the MTTC test varies from one test to the other. This makes the time assigned to every test vary depending on the nature of the exam and the complexity levels.

Your area of specialization is another crucial factor that defines the nature of the exam. Prospective teachers who want to focus on a specific content area are assigned a specific test that evaluates their expertise and understanding of various teaching techniques.

The MTTC test involves different types of exams that address specific pain points. They include:

  •   The English language arts and world languages cover 24% of the test. The test evaluates the development of vocabulary and reading comprehension.
  •   Social studies is another key area representing 16% of the test. The subject revolves around the history of the United States, Michigan, and the local community.
  •   Visual and performing arts incorporate 10% of the exam score. The questions in this area discuss artistic and creative processes and products.
  •   Mathematics is a major part of the MTTC test, with an average of 22%. Here, the test evaluates your mathematical reasoning capabilities and how you can solve mathematical-related problems.
  •   Science represents 18% of the score evaluating your understanding of how new scientific knowledge is constructed. It also covers the fundamental concepts of life science.
  •   Health and physical education is the last segment of the MTTC test, with an average of 10%. It discusses the concepts and strategies of health education. Also, this subarea talks about the strategies of physical education.

When taking the MTTC test, there are different exam versions to choose from. You can do the test presented through a computer system or opt for the paper version.

The method you choose does not have an impact on the final score since scoring is based on the number of questions answered correctly.

Number of Questions

As mentioned earlier, the number of questions in every test varies. The questions are presented depending on the objective of the test. 

For instance, if you intend to become a secondary school mathematics teacher, you must successfully complete an MTTC test that is full of mathematics questions. The complexity of the questions depends on the primary objective of the exam. 

However, the complexity levels of the questions play a significant role when giving scores. 

Here is a list of MTTC tests with a specific number of questions presented in every category. 

  •   Early Childhood Education - 100 questions
  •   Elementary Education - 150 questions
  •   Middle-Level Education - 100 questions
  •   Mathematics (Elementary) - 80 questions
  •   Mathematics (Secondary) - 80 questions
  •   Social Studies (Elementary) - 100 questions
  •   Social Studies (Secondary) - 100 questions
  •   English - 100 questions

Test Time

The time allocated to every MTTC test depends on the format of the exam. The MDE assigns a specific format to every test depending on its primary objective. 

Also, the time allotted per task is determined by the approach used by the test taker. Candidates using computers are assigned a different time frame compared to those using the paper-based option. 

Once the MDE recommends a test, it also outlines the time taken based on your choice of exam format. 

Below is a detailed comparison between computerized and paper-based time. 

Test Computerized Paper-based
Early Childhood Education 2.5 hours 4.5 hours
Elementary Education 3.5 hours 4.5 hours
Middle Level2.5 hours 4.5 hours
Mathematics (Elementary) 2.5 hours 4.5 hours
Mathematics (Secondary) 2.5 hours 4.5 hours
Social Studies (Secondary) 2.5 hours 4.5 hours
Social Studies (Elementary) 2.5 hours 4.5 hours
English 2.5 hours 4.5 hours

MTTC Scores

The MDE has established predetermined standards for passing every MTTC test. The scores vary from one test to the other. Since there are multiple MTTC exams, the scores are different structures.

The scores are awarded depending on the number of questions answered correctly. The questions are divided into segments, such as multiple-choice and constructed-response questions.

When generating the final scores, all the scores awarded on different sections are converted to a scaled number between 100 and 300. You must score an average of 220 or more in every exam to pass the test.

After completing the exam, you must wait for the official test score release to get an official report from the MDE. You can access your MTTC results on your MTTC account on the day of release from 10 pm.

The scores will be available on the portal for the next two years. You’ll also receive an email report immediately after completing your MTTC registration for the test. The portal offers more information about the score report dates for those taking paper-based and computer exams.

If you take the MTTC exams via computer, and it’s a multiple-choice test, you can receive the preliminary results the same day. The results are available on the test site immediately after the testing period ends.

The preliminary results are not official and are subject to change once the MTTC test is officially graded. The results are only meant to give you a glimpse of what you will likely receive as the test outcome.

The official score report gives you a clear glimpse of whether you passed or failed. The scores are outlined in different categories, such as the subarea of the test. It elaborates on how you have performed in every testing category.

The performance indicators are outlined using the + signs. Two + sign means that you only answered a few questions correctly or lack sufficient skills in the field. The three + signs are meant to showcase satisfaction to individuals who answered many questions correctly.

Four is the highest number of the + signs, awarded to candidates who answered almost all the questions correctly, showing high-level skills in a given field.

It's essential to answer all the questions instead of leaving blanks. There are no deductions for giving incorrect answers. Candidates who attempt all the questions increase their chances of scoring higher.

The World Language Test involves constructed-response questions, popularly known as CRQs. The questions are scored using a different approach that showcases your expertise in this space.

The scores range from 1 to 4 points and are added to the final scaled score. Candidates showcasing high-level skills in this space have a better chance of passing the test.

Prospective teachers intending to specialize in this space need to showcase satisfactory skills to get certification from the respective body.

Passing an MTTC Exam

The MTTC Exam comes with some levels of complexity that you need to crack down on. This depends on the nature of the exam and the subject area. Before choosing your field, ensure you understand the hurdles along the way.

The complexity of a given MTTC test is impacted by various factors such as:

  •   Academic background,
  •   Professional experience,
  •   MTTC test prep,
  •   Test-day conditions.

The only secret to passing the MTTC exam is proper preparation. When preparing for the MTTC exam, the first step is to create an account on the MTTC website and register for the test and select the subject area exam you intend to take. Also, specify your location and your preferred appointment time.

According to the Michigan Office of Educator Excellence, the MTTC passing rates from 2019 - 2020 were 81.8%. All candidates need to hit this pass rate to get licensing and certification to teach in Michigan schools.

Each MTTC exam subject has a different passing mark. This helps to verify your knowledge in specific areas and general teaching techniques. For instance, the lowest initial pass rate in Social Studies for elementary education is 60.6% while prospective teachers who want to focus on students with disabilities need to hit 93.4% to pass the test. Disability has the highest pass mark of all the MTTC tests.

Preparing for an MTTC Test

After registering for your MTTC test, creating a study plan with an explicit schedule for reviewing test competency and working practice problems is good. Start the preparation early and set achievable goals that will propel your efforts.

 Stick to your study plan and use MTTC study guides to review materials at least three times before the test day. The studying schedule should also incorporate time for working out example problems from every test category. 

You can also do a full-length practice test to evaluate your potential before the main test. To avoid getting stressed on the test day, make a test day routine ahead of time. This will help to make your mind focused on passing the exam. The test day routine should involve rereading test policies and double-checking the test appointment time and location, among others. Preparing your brain in advance increases your chances of passing the test. 

Preparing for the MTTC test can be challenging if you don't know where to start. The Learning Liaisons give you access to different MTTC tests and guidance on what suits you. Once you select your preferred tests on our site, we give you access to an overview of the MTTC exam, the specific sub-area, and a question format under every category.  

Visit us today and get help and pass your MTTC test on the first attempt.