CBEST writing

Discussion in 'Basic Skills Tests' started by sally0902, Feb 20, 2018.

  1. sally0902

    sally0902 Rookie

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    Feb 23, 2018

    Thank you so much! I will practice in this way! I will manage my complex sentences.
     
  2. nila

    nila Rookie

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    Feb 26, 2018

    Thanks for giving me feedback on my essay. I agree, I really need tutor but, it is very hard to find one who is reasonable in price. They charge $70 to $250 per hour range. I will try usingenglishcom if that helps me improve.
     
  3. Lou

    Lou Rookie

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    Feb 26, 2018

    Hi, after taking the computer based test, do I have to wait 45 days if I want to re-take it as PBT
     
  4. Lou

    Lou Rookie

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    Feb 26, 2018

    I am already registered for the CBT on March but the PBT will be on Apr 21 can still register after taking the CBT on March 20th
     
  5. Lou

    Lou Rookie

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    Feb 27, 2018

     
  6. Lou

    Lou Rookie

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    Feb 27, 2018

    Can somebody help
     
  7. TeacherGroupie

    TeacherGroupie Moderator

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    Feb 27, 2018

    To the best of my knowledge, yes.
     
  8. Lou

    Lou Rookie

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    Feb 27, 2018

    Do I have to wait 45 days or not in order to retake the the PBT
     
  9. TeacherGroupie

    TeacherGroupie Moderator

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    Feb 27, 2018

    Let me spell it out. A test taker IS required to wait 45 days between CBT dates, and the test taker taking PBT doesn't have a choice about waiting - but, to the best of my knowledge, the PBT window is invisible to CBT registration and vice versa, so the test taker who signed up for PBT on a given Saturday can sign up for CBT the following Monday, and the test taker who suddenly discovers a PBT date that's within the 45-day CBT no-retake window can sign up for that PBT. The way to test this in your case is simply to try to register for the PBT: if the rules have changed, you simply won't be allowed to sign up.
     
  10. Lou

    Lou Rookie

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    Feb 27, 2018

    Thank you
     
  11. Lou

    Lou Rookie

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    Mar 2, 2018

    A moment ago

    What is the CBEST minimum words to write for an essay? is 270 too few or I can get away with it?
     
  12. Jayme Robertson

    Jayme Robertson New Member

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    Mar 12, 2018

    I just got my results back and I scored a 29 for both essays this was the response I received. So does that mean that my layout and format was okay? I just need to focus on the verbiage, grammar and spelling? I am so used to typing words and having a spell check it really threw me off when I first took the test.

    - Usage (using words that express one's meaning clearly and correctly)
    - Structure and Conventions (being accurate with grammar, spelling, punctuation, and the like)
     
  13. TeacherGroupie

    TeacherGroupie Moderator

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    Mar 12, 2018

    As far as I can tell, it isn't the case that CBEST has a minimum requirement for number of words. But in practical terms 270 is pretty close to the minimum number of words that most of us need to deal more or less adequately with both the prompt and the six diagnostic indices (rhetorical force, organization, support and development, usage, structure and conventions, appropriateness).
     
  14. TeacherGroupie

    TeacherGroupie Moderator

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    Mar 12, 2018

    I'll put it this way: usage and structure and conventions are the areas that the diagnostic-assigner noticed, but you might have someone take a look at your writing to see if there are recurring low-level issues in the other four diagnostic areas that you could fix fairly straightforwardly.
     
    Jayme Robertson likes this.
  15. Yafeng Liao

    Yafeng Liao New Member

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    Mar 17, 2018

    I need help, I took CBEST writing four times. each time I got the same marks 26. so sad. no improvements. my primary language is Mandarin. always the same problem "usage" and "structure and conventions" I graduate from China, and no native friends in here. I am new to America. I wonder if anyone can help me correct this narrative essay and point out my problem, thank you so much!
    the topic:
    Most students have had some type of difficulty in one course or another. Difficulties stem from various sources, such as teacher-student conflicts or lack of interest in the subject field. In an essay to be read by an audience of educated adults, identify one class in which you faced a difficulty either as a student or as a teacher, describe the difficulty, and explain how you handled the situation.



    I am a new teacher. Facing some difficulty was not a rare thing in my teaching career. Last year, I went through a period of hard time when I work as a Mandarin teacher for an IB elementary school.

    My kids varied from k-5th-grade students. Before I go to that IB school, the kids never learn any Mandarin nor have the Asian cultural background. Some of the kid’s native language is Spanish-a language writes similar to English. Therefore, after two week’s freshness feeling of basic Mandarin greetings, some of the fourth-grade kids easy to get distracted and meet difficulties in writing Mandarin promptly. They seem like losing interest in Mandarin as I always heard noise talking while I show the new words. While all the other students were obediently paying attention and practicing sentences, they sit together and talk so loud to share something else.

    To make matters worse, I was hard to remember each kid’s name in a short time because of the huge total number. Usually, when I feel like being interrupted by the naughty kids, I have to stop teaching, then staring at that kid and say “hey, it’s you, sit nice and be quiet.” At this time, two or three other kids would point at themselves and say:“me?” I said:“no, it’s not you!” The whole class breaks out a big laugh. Some kids would try to help me:“no, it’s him!” “Kai, stop, you are wasting our time!” “we are all waiting for you!”. Under this situation, I found it hard to let them learn new things efficiently.

    Things started to change after a kind-hearted experienced old teacher give me some suggestions. She advises me to arrange the kid’s seat again, make sure those naughty kids would not sit with each other. And write down their name according to their position. Make a record of kids bad behave in every day’s lesson and report to their classroom teacher.

    Only one week later, my class has a huge difference. Sharing new knowledge becomes a super easy and funny thing. Moreover, I started to let my kids know how the Mandarin words come into being after a long historical evolution. And try my best make the problematic knowledge turn into a song for them to remember. If they behave good, I will teach them how to create a new paper-cutting flower every four weeks.

    One year later, they all become Mandarin lover and my favorite students. This teaching experience makes me understand: as long as you want, you can make it.
     
  16. nila

    nila Rookie

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    Mar 19, 2018

    Can somebody give me a feedback on my essay.


    Technology as a force that has escaped from human control. Others feel that
    technology has improved the quality of life. Do you think that the
    contribution technology has made to modern life has been positive or
    negative? State your position on this issue and support it with appropriate


    The 21st century will be remembered for the fast paced technology development. A lot of technology advancement took place in this era.
    In the modern and competitive world life has become challenging Technology has definitely improved the human life in many different ways. The benefits of technology are immense. Some of the benefits are easy access to information, connectivity, and mobility.

    Easy access to information is really beneficial. In the modern world, people need to be skilled in different areas to be successful. People can get information about everything on the internet. Technology enables people to achieve these skills.


    Access to information is beneficial. People need to be skilled in variety of things, in order to have a productive life and career. Technology enables one to achieve those skills. Now days, with computers, people can get information about anything. A person can learn a new language and a new skill at the comfort of their home. The internet has tutorials on every subject or area. Also, if a person has some type of ailment, there is the information available online like Cause, symptoms, treatments. Easy access to information is not the only benefit.

    Another benefit of technology is connectivity. In pre-technological era, people did not have ways to stay connected that attribute to lack of knowledge about current events. Also, with the invention of cell phones, it has become easy to stay connected with family and friends. Parents can stay in touch with their children when they go out with their friends or alone. Parents and children feel safe if they have ability to call in case of any difficult situation. Not only, one can stay connected through the phones but technology improved the mobility as well.

    Having easy mobility has improved human life in every aspect. A motorized vehicle can cover miles of distance in minutes. In modern times, life is fast paced and motorized vehicle can help keeping up with the pace. People have been traveling to different countries and learning about different cultures, foods, and languages. One can accomplish more in a day compared to ancient times.

    Conclusion

    In the conclusion, technology widened the horizon for human being. One can get all the information he can possibly get on any subject. Knowledge is power saying comes true in real sense. People can enjoy their leisure time going to different places weather for meeting a friend or for a dinner. Technology has become a vital part of our daily lives.
     
  17. otterpop

    otterpop Aficionado

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    Mar 19, 2018

    These both sound like good pieces of advice to me. I passed the CBEST the first time; I'm a native English speaker, though. I did not try to include any high-level vocabulary. I don't know about the actual scoring, and it sounds like TeacherGroupie has more detailed information, but it seems like you should worry less about impressing the readers with your knowledge of vocab, and more about making sure your punctuation and grammar (such as subject-verb agreement) are unquestionably correct.

    I'd also recommend getting really good at using a few sequence word sets. For example, for an opinion essay, you might use these to start out each paragraph:
    • As far as I’m concerned, ...
    • First of all,
    • In addition,
    • Furthermore,
    • For all these reasons,
    I hope that advice isn't too simple. Having a good structure can help an essay a lot. Here are some other transition words for essays: http://englishtestprepreview.com/ie...y-20-sets-of-transition-words-phrases-to-know
     
  18. TeacherGroupie

    TeacherGroupie Moderator

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    Mar 20, 2018

    Your essay fulfills the prompt, is organized well, and gives details, some delightfully specific, to support and develop the story - but I'm afraid I agree with the scorers: there are numerous errors in usage and in structure and conventions. Your most frequent error in conventions is in tense marking, and your second sentence is an example:

    "Last year" and "I went" tell us that the events you will describe took place in the past. "I work", however, is present tense, which is appropriate if it happens now: to be consistent, that should be "I worked" (or possibly "I was working"). The rule I think you're missing - because the first verb phrase in each of your sentences tends to be tensed correctly - is that full subordinate clauses in English show tense too.

    I think you would benefit from live one-on-one help. If you can't afford to pay for it, you might see if anyone at the local university would be willing to help you with your English essays in exchange for help with Mandarin: there's usually a bulletin board on which one can post a notice.

    Try the very useful website www.UsingEnglish.com. There is or was a tool for checking grammar and idiom in a single sentence. The site is based on British English, so a few spellings and some punctuation will be different, but not in major ways. The site also contains many discussions of English grammar that I think you'll find useful.

    Edited to note: I am deeply disappointed to find that Using English no longer has a grammar-check tool. Grammarly (www.grammarly.com) is a paid online service that does offer some free tools. I see some recommendations for Ginger Software's online grammar checker, www.gingersoftware.com, and for WhiteSmoke, though I don't have a link handy.
     
    Last edited: Mar 20, 2018
  19. TeacherGroupie

    TeacherGroupie Moderator

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    Mar 20, 2018

    Microsoft Word tells me, nila, that your essay has 412 words. I suspect you would be better off writing a shorter essay and taking the time to ensure that the words you use are words you know how to use.

    A few things that jump out at me:

    - For what you're trying to accomplish, your introductory paragraph is too long.

    - You've written sentences at the ends of several paragraphs to transition to the next paragraph. Move those to the paragraphs to which they transition.

    - I don't understand the break between your second and third paragraphs.

    - Please look up the word "attribute". Find a dictionary that gives examples of the word in use (Wiktionary can be useful here).

    - In a work this short, there is no need to label a conclusion as "Conclusion". ​

    You've already said you can't afford a tutor. Frankly, you'd be better served by skipping a couple of test dates and using that money instead to pay a skilled tutor.
     
  20. Lou

    Lou Rookie

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    Mar 21, 2018

    Teacher Groupie
    How can I find a skilled tutor any idea.
     

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