I wanted to add a new update about the VCLA (Virginia Communication and Literacy Assessment).
I took it on Tuesday, April 17th at 12 pm at Pearson Professional Center on Williamson Road in Roanoke. The center was so easy to get to, friendly, and the time was perfect for me being that I am not an early morning test-taking type. I took the test on the computer, both the reading and writing sections, and it took me three out of four hours to complete. Be prepared- you cannot take ANYTHING into the room with you- even watches and/or bracelets come off so that you don't make any sound. They did not ask me to take off any other jewelry, though. They provided a dry-erase notebook incase you preferred to write anything down. Ear muffs were also offered to block out any sound-- these were very helpful being that a lady in my room whisper-read everything to herself so I found myself easily distracted by the "ssspshsphpshs" of her reading. FYI- I arrived 30 minutes early, as all sites require, and I was able to begin the test whenever I was ready because the person before me had finished early. I, not being the one to wait, decided to start immediately. You are also allowed bathroom breaks at this center, but your time continues to run if you need to do so. They cannot stop the clock for you to take a break, but breaks are allowed.
While the test is essentially an english SAT, I found it extremely helpful to review before I took the test. I bought the VCLA XAMonline.com book (first edition) to study from. I found it at Barnes and Noble, ISBN 978-160787108-8. I also used the website to take practice tests and read about what was covered on the test. This site is also where you register to take the test, if you are wondering.
For me, the test was relatively easy. I had taken so many practice tests that I was not surprised by any question, and I felt slightly confident in my ability. The main thing for all of these tests is simply to be prepared. If you cannot really study, make sure you at least look at/read over sample tests so you know what is coming your way. Pearson printed off my results immediately. I know my reading score already because it was all multiple choice. My writing tests had the multiple choice questions graded immediately, but now I have to wait on the constructed response scores. I should receive them in the next few weeks.
Next up-- the RVE! (Reading for Virginia Educators- the old VRA). I'm taking it on Wednesday (4/25) at 9 AM (UGH!) at Prometric Test Center off Electric Road in the middle of nowhere Salem. Not looking forward to this all-encompassing test, or the center- I have heard that it is less than stellar. I will let you know how it goes!!