Welcome to my unofficial National Board Assessment Center Simulation.

I designed this simulation in 2004 to help candidates with the tri pane format of the assessment center. The directions and the scenario are on the top left of the screen. The questions for the prompt are on the right side of the screen. The bottom area is where you do your typing.


A timer is included on the bottom left of the screen to assist with pacing, but nothing will happen after 30 minutes. The user must start the timer manually. (Originally, I was going to set the timer to autostart, but this gives the user more options as to how to use the exercise. Please note that the “real timer”in the Assessment Center counts backwards from 30 minutes.)


Disclaimer: This is a crude representation of the actual Assessment Center. Candidates are encouraged to take the available tutorial at the assessment center and on the National Board Website since the actual interface will be different.


The purpose of this site is to assist candidates in becoming familiar with a timed written test presented in a three-pane format, but expect some slight differences in the real test (such as having to push buttons to move back and forth between the prompt questions.)


OK- so now that’s out of the way. At the end of the allotted time, copy and paste the directions, prompt, and responses in a word processor so you can save your response.


When you analyze the quality of your response, first ask, “Did I answer all the questions?” It is important to do so since you will loose points for questions unanswered. Budget your time wisely. Then ask, “Did I integrate the professional language (sometimes known as jargonese or educanese) in my response?” It is important to do so, because you want to sound like you know what you’re talking about. Then ask, “Did I cite specific examples from the example or scenario?” It is important to do so, since your answers must be appropriate to the conditions given. Then assess your answers for developmental and age appropriateness.


Good luck! Due to my current work and grad school commitments, I cannot provide any candidate support responses. I suggest the support groups on Yahoo Groups as a good source for resources. Your input is always appreciated. Please note that the prompts below are the only ones available at this site at this time. A blank page is available here for you to cut and paste a prompt if you have prompts already available.


-Patrick Ledesma, Ed.S, NBCT.


Assessment Center Prompts

Early Childhood Generalist

Exercise 2: Mathematics

Exercise 3: Understanding Science

Exercise 4: Social Studies

Exercise 5: Children’s Play

Exercise 6: Understanding Health

English Language Arts (AYA)

Exercise 4: Language Study

Exercise 6: Teaching Writing

Exceptional Needs Specialist

Exercise 2: Science & Mathematics

Exercise 3: Social Studies and the Arts (From Yahoo Groups)

Exercise 5: Health & Physical Education Leisure


Exercise 1: Reading Comprehension

Exercise 2: Oral Language Acquisition Skills for Learners of English as a New Language

Exercise 2: Oral Language Acquisition Skills for Learners of English Language

Exercise 3: Emergent Reader

Exercise 4: Analyzing Student Reading

Exercise 6: Writing Development

Middle Childhood Generalist

Exercise 3: Understanding Science

Exercise 4: Social Studies

Exercise 4: Social Studies II

Exercise 5: Understanding Health

Exercise 5: Understanding Health

Exercise 6: Integrating the Arts


Exercise 2: Interrelationships

Exercise 3: Unifying Concepts

Exercise 4: Change Over Time

Exercise 5: Student Misconceptions

School Counseling

Exercise 1

Exercise 2

49 Responses to “NBPTS”

  • Susan

    I don’t see the timer. But I do appreciate the website. I test on June 8 and I need all the practice and studying I can get. Thanks

  • Patrick

    Thanks- you should see the timer now. Good luck on the test. -Patrick

  • Susie

    Anything for EAYA/CTE??? I take the test Thursday…am pretty confident in my area of FACS but am overwhemlingly stuck in regard to the others.

  • Patrick

    Sorry, those are the only prompts available on the site. Good luck on the test. -Patrick

  • Lisa

    Thanks Patrick!! Your generosity in designing this is tremendous! I found it to be extremely helpful..a great way to practice getting rid of the nerves!

  • Carol

    Thank you, thank you, thank you! This was a real eye opener as far as preparing to read the prompts, rubrics, scenarios, etc. and still have time to respond. I have a better idea of how to budget my time. I’ll be testing in 3 days-with me luck!

  • Patrick

    Many candidates who do this simulation or any timed practice writing for the first time realize how fast 30 minutes speeds by, so giving enough time for brainstorming, outlining, etc – sticking to a time schedule is important. After all, the last time we had to do a timed writing exercise was maybe high school or college? :-)

  • Do you have anything for Early Adolescent Social Studies/History ages 12-15

  • Stephanie Wheeldon


    The Literacy (EMC ) Chat’s are in the wrong order above…

  • pamela held

    Hello Pagtrick,
    Thank you so very much for these practice tests. Do you have a practice test for literacy, ECG, grade k-3?
    Your prompts really help me.

  • Marie

    What is your suggestion for review of teaching strategies if a teacher teaches only one subject but wishes to test in the middle childhood generalist category?

  • Patrick

    Hello- the prompts on the page are the only ones I have.

  • Patrick

    You will need to become familiar with the subjects, resources, and teaching strategies covered in the entire developmental range of the certificate. There’s alot of ways to do this- review of journal articles, textbooks, online articles on ed sites, also talk with good teachers you know in those areas and get a feel for how they teach and what resources/strategies they use. Spend time in their classes so you can become familiar with what they do- and you can imagine yourself doing their job if needed. (For example, my certificate covered elementary to high school, and being an elementary and middle school teacher, I had little high school experience, so I actually took a some personal time off and visited high school classes in disabilities areas that I was not as familiar with, which really helped.)

    Good luck!

  • Sandy

    THANK YOU SO MUCH!!! This website is VERY VALUABLE!!! Wish I’d have found it earlier. I test in 4 days, so know what I will be doing every night between now and then. Appreciate your help with creating this resource, whether the exercises are in the correct order or not. Knowing the parts of each exercise is one thing. But having a chance to practice each prompt of the exercise is GREAT!! I appreciate your time and effort on behalf of sooooooo many of us.

  • Kim

    Patrick!!! You are awesome. The BIGGEST stress for me is the timing component! I really appreciate you time and efforts! Wish me luck, my assessment is tomorrow!

  • Obamamama

    Patrick –
    Had to stop a minute and just say it’s people like you who make me believe there is hope yet for this world!!! How very thoughtful and altruistic of you to create this for us. Thank you.

  • Kristy

    Thank you for making this site. It was extremely helpful preparing for my tests (which are Saturday, yikes)! It was helpful monitoring the time and trying to think on your feet. Is there a reason why there is 2 social studies and 2 health but no math or reading on the MC GEN section? Just wondering…


  • Patrick

    I’m glad the site was helpful. As for the prompts, I made this site when I was teaching a candidacy prep course, so I made assessments that the candidates in the class would take, so not all certificates are represented. I also used the released prompts. As more prompts are released or prompts that were created with the rubrics and standards in mind are sent, I’ll add more to the site. It continues to be a work in progress. :-)

  • Becky

    WOW! I sure wish I would have found this site sooner! I am a retake candidate and am hoping for the best!

  • Angela

    Ditto to all the above remarks. I test tomorrow and am so happy to have found your website. I am a school counselor and I was VERY surprised to see you had a simulation prompt for my certificate area. Thank you so much. I am allotting myself one hour to do the two you have posted just to gauge my time frame. This will put me at greater ease before tomorrow morning’s test. Thank you. Thank you. Thank You.

  • Angela

    Thank you

  • Brian

    Dear Patrick,
    Thanks for taking the time and using your talents to create this very useful test prep tool. It would be nice if NBPTS had created something nearly as useful as your mock test run scenario in their voluminous but highly redundant website! Congratulations on a job well done! The timer was very useful too. Brian

  • Jay

    Hi Patrick,

    Thank you for this website with the prompts. Would it make sense for a more “real” experience, it teachers used the download practice program from Pearson and ignored the prompts (after doing them) that are provided and use your prompts as extra practice. It would provide more practice navigating between the pages and seeing the timer as it will appear.

    Just a thought.

    I’m writing this after the June 15th deadline as I received accommodation for a recorder and extra time as I have a partially torn bicep ligament on my dominant arm. One handed, hunt and peck typing is a pain.

  • Rodney Fulton

    Any plans to add any additional sample exercises/retired prompts for those preparing for 2010 testing dates?

  • Patrick

    Hello Rodney,

    As time permits- but between grad school, work, and NB recertification, time is scarce. :-(

  • Karmen

    Patrick, Thank you for putting this site together. It has been a great help to prepare me for the assessment center. Being able to see the type of format to expect has eased my mind a lot. I am a 2009 candidate, and will test June 12. This will be a great help. As will sitting in on other classes which I will begin doing as soon as the State Mandated tests are complete.

  • Thanks Patrick,
    I take the assessment in June. This is really helpful.

  • Thanks Patrick,
    This is really helpful. I take the assessment in June.

  • Mary

    Hi-I actually failed after retaking for three years-final score was a 274! However, I just can’t give up. I signed up once again, have submitted all four entries once again and am now studying to retake all six assessments….I felt horrible, but am eager to pass this thing!! I will be testing on June 10th, in EC-Generalist. Do you know what the key words are that assessors are looking for? I am studying the standards and reading a variety of books, but feel overwhelmed. Any suggestions-thanks.

  • Kendra

    Hello. We are a group of 6 teachers all taking the EMC:LRLA test at the assessment center. The topics we are given are different than those on your site. Just checking to see if ours is “updated” or if there are any further sites to get current sample questions? Thank you!

  • Mary

    I am testing the first of June in EAY math. Do you know any key words I should use and any suggestions for studying? Do you have in practice prompts for math?

  • Rory

    Hi Patrick- Do you have a Literacy prompt(#1) for EC Generalist?
    You have all the prompts Math, Science, Social Studies, Play and PE/Health but no literacy. Thanks!

  • Lili

    This message is for Kendra. I am also doing EMC:LRLA Literacy Reading-Language Arts. My exercises include:
    1-reading comprehension
    2-roal language acquisition skills
    3-Emergent Literacy
    4-Analyzing Student reading
    5-Interpreting Visual text
    6- writing development

    The only one that is different is exercise 5.

  • Trina

    Hi Patrick,
    Just adding to the thank you’s from above. I really appreciate finding this site and the information that you have gathered to share with us. I appreciate the testing format that you created to help get us in the mind of timed testing and the opportunity that it provides for practice. Thank you again!

  • Katie

    Do you have any prompts for middle childhood Physical Education?

  • Juanita

    Thanks so much for taking the time to share! Do you know of another source of retired prompts on the web? I am looking for EA Science. Thanks again!

  • Shae

    I just wanted to say thank you so much! I stumbled upon this site and it has been an invaluable resource. Since this is my 3rd time taking the AC exercises (only taking 1 this time) I can verify that your simulated exercises are very accurate, for anyone who might be reading this and wondering. Again, thank you. This was a tremendous help!

  • Kernita


    Thanks so much for sharing this information. I will be testing tomorrow and wanted to do some last minute review. This was great and on point with the other retired prompts I browsed.

  • edna

    this is a good practice to be familiar with the type of question I will be answering on June 15. It is a motivator and helped me think better and feeling how much time I still have. I just wish there are more questions for the high school level. thanks a lot. you are doing a good job!

  • leslie

    thank you so much for making the practice prompts. I would love to find a site with more. This has taken the edge of my test anxiety for June 26.

  • Donna

    Thanks so much for providing these practice exercises! I tried the National Board site and the Pearson software kept showing an error message half way through. I test in a couple of days, and now I feel more prepared. Thanks!!

  • Patrick,
    Your site is fantastic! I think it’s wonderful that you’ve offered this to candidates so they can practice. Keep up the good work!

  • Carol Vincent

    Patrick: Just heard about this site today from a classroom teacher. I am testing on June 13th, 2011 in Art: Early Childhood. I have found only 2 retired prompts on the NBPTS site for only 2 of the exercises in Art. I was hoping to see retired prompts from all exercises. I did not see Elementary Art included on your website. Do you or anyone else know where I can view other retired prompts? I could use all the help I can get. Thanks.

  • Melanie

    Thanks for the simulation and the info on this site. Was very helpful especially practicing with timed tests. I take my exam this morning and shooting for the BEST!!!

  • James

    This is awesome. I have been searching desparately for test prep for the assessment center exercises. Would you happen to have anything for EA Mathematics?

  • Lisa

    Thanks. This was the most helpful site of my hours of preparation for the upcoming tests.

  • sheryl

    Do you have any practice tests for the MC Gen math- analyzing math errors and instruction?
    Thanks for your website. It is the only thing out there for practice, and anything that the national boards puts out is worthless.

  • Reena G.

    Thankyou Patrick,
    It is awesome to look at the resources provided.Bless you.

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