MTLE Special Education Core Skills (Birth to Age 21) Study Guide

What comes with Cirrus Test Prep’s MTLE Special Education Study Guide?

You probably think this is a typical study guide. However, Cirrus Test Prep’s unofficial MTLE Special Education Core Skills (Birth to Age 21) Study Guide: Test Prep and Practice Questions for the Minnesota Teacher Licensure Examinations Special Education Exam isn't like other study guides. Because we know you value your time, our unofficial study guide includes a quick yet full review of everything on the test with real examples, graphics, and information. Cirrus Test Prep’s NEW MTLE Special Education Core Skills (Birth to Age 21) Study Guide gives you the edge you need to score higher and pass the first time.

Best of all, Cirrus Test Prep’s MTLE Special Education Core Skills (Birth to Age 21) Study Guide offers you:

  • A full review of what you need to know for the MTLE exam

  • MTLE practice questions for you to practice and improve and worked through practice problems with explanations

  • Test tips and strategies to help you score higher

  • Real world examples

Our MTLE prep book covers all the material that will be on your exam, including:

  • Assessment

  • Transition

  • Professional Responsibilities

  • Student Growth and Development

  • Disability Categories

  • Planning and the Learning Environment

  • Instruction


… and also comes with a FULL MTLE practice test, so that you will be ready on test day.

But before you buy MTLE Special Education Core Skills (Birth to Age 21) Study Guide, you may find yourself wondering, what is the MTLE? What is on the MTLE? How is the MTLE scored? How is the MTLE administered? We are the MTLE experts, and we are happy to answer all your questions below!

Some Frequently Asked Questions about the MTLE…

What is the MTLE?

The MTLE Special Education Core Skills exam is a part of teaching licensure in Minnesota. MTLE scores are used to complete a state application for teacher certification. The assessment ensures that the examinee has the skills and knowledge necessary to become a special education teacher in Minnesota public schools.

What is on the MTLE?

The MTLE is a multiple-choice test designed to assess whether you possess the knowledge and skills necessary to become a special education teacher in Minnesota. The test contains two parts, Subtest 1 and Subtest 2. Each subtest contains approximately fifty multiple-choice questions with four answer options and a single correct answer. Multiple-choice questions are both general-knowledge questions and scenario-based questions that require examinees to answer a question based on a particular setting or scenario. Areas of study include:

MTLE Subtest 1

  • Professional Knowledge, Communication, and Collaboration (70%)

    • Historical, philosophical, professional, and legal foundations

    • Characteristics/needs of students with disabilities

    • Communication/collaboration to support student development

  • Scientifically Based Reading Instruction (30%)

    • Oral language, phonics, spelling, fluency, and word recognition

    • Vocabulary, academic language, and reading comprehension

TOTAL: 50 questions; 1 hour

MTLE Subtest 2

  • Referral, Evaluation, Planning, and Programming (50%)

    • Selecting/administering assessments

    • Developing, implementing, and monitoring IFSPs and IEPs

  • Instruction Design, Teaching, and Ongoing Evaluation (50%)

    • Planning, managing, and modifying learning environments

    • Providing positive behavioral interventions/supports

    • Curricular planning and instructional practices for students with disabilities

TOTAL: 50 questions; 1 hour

How is the MTLE scored?

Each multiple-choice question is worth one raw point. The total number of questions you answer correctly is added up to obtain your raw score. The raw score is then converted into a scaled score between 100 and 300. A scaled score of 240 is required to pass the test. Your score report will also indicate a performance index giving you a general idea of how you performed on each subarea.

Keep in mind that a small number of selected-response questions are experimental and will not count toward your overall score. ETS uses these to test out new questions for future exams. However, as those questions are not indicated on the test, you must respond to every question. There is no penalty for guessing on the test, so be sure to eliminate answer choices and answer every question. If you still don’t know the answer, guess; you may get it right!

How is the MTLE administered?

The MTLE is a computer-based test offered continuously at a range of universities and testing centers. You can choose to take both subtests in a single sitting or each subtest separately. Check Pearson Vue’s website for more information on registration. You will need to print your registration ticket from your online account and bring it, along with your identification, to the testing site on test day. No pens, pencils, erasers, or calculators are allowed. You should report to the testing center fifteen minutes before your scheduled test time. You may take the test once every forty-five days.

Why should I use Cirrus Test Prep’s MTLE study material?

Developed by experienced current and former educators, Cirrus Test Prep’s study materials help future educators gain the skills and knowledge needed to successfully pass their state-level teacher certification exams and enter the classroom. Each Cirrus Test Prep study guide includes: a detailed summary of the test’s format, content, and scoring; an overview of the content knowledge required to pass the exam; worked-through sample questions with answers and explanations; full-length practice tests including answer explanations; and unique test-taking strategies with highlighted key concepts. Cirrus Test Prep’s study materials ensure that new educators feel prepared on test day and beyond.

Where can I buy MTLE Special Education Core Skills (Birth to Age 21) Study Guide?

You can find MTLE Special Education Core Skills (Birth to Age 21) Study Guide for purchase on Amazon and Barnes and Noble. Just click the link next to our book, the image of our book itself, or the links we provided in the sentence above!

So…how else can I prepare for the MTLE?

To help you prepare for your MTLE test, we have developed a list of 30 test-taking tips that have been shown to be very helpful for students of all ages and backgrounds when taking standardized tests. They cover everything. from what to do the night before the big day, to what to eat for breakfast, to thoughts on how to handle your caffeine to tips you can use during the actual exam.

Our first set of tips focus on what you can do the night before to help you prepare for the day of your MTLE exam.

1. Study hard for the MTLE exam with our MTLE practice test in the days before the exam but take it easy the night before and do something relaxing rather than studying and cramming. This will help decrease anxiety, allow you to get a better night’s sleep, and be more mentally fresh during the big exam.

2. Pack your bag or lay out your essentials the night before. Make sure to include at least two forms of ID, your admission ticket or confirmation, pencils, a high protein, easy-to-eat snack, bottled water, and any necessary medications.

3. Map out your route to the test center the night before. If you are driving, take traffic into account, especially if you are driving during rush hour.

4. Spend the hour before bed avoiding television, your computer, cell phone, or social media. The bright screens and overload of data can keep your brain buzzing come bedtime.

Once you’ve taken all the necessary steps you can to be prepared for exam day, our next group of tips will help you concentrate on how to get your best night’s sleep, which is critical to being sharp and alert during your MTLE exam.

5. Make sure you give yourself your usual amount of sleep, preferably at least 7-8 hours. You may find you need even more sleep. Pay attention to how much you sleep in the days before the exam, and how many hours it takes for you to feel refreshed.

6. Set your alarm early enough that you have plenty of time to have a well-balanced breakfast and avoid rushing in the morning to get ready.

7. Don’t use sedatives like Benadryl or NyQuil to fall asleep. These medications often remain in your body long after you have taken them, meaning you will still be drowsy during the exam and potentially up to 24 hours after taking them.

8. With all the extra adrenaline flowing through your bloodstream the night before a big test, it is not uncommon to feel more anxiety than usual. Focus on thinking positive thoughts, which will decrease this anxiety, help you relax and fall asleep.

Now that you’re ready to get a full night’s sleep, here are some great tips to help you get through the morning and those critical hours before the big exam.

9. Don't forget to take any vitamins or medications you would usually take in the mornings before you leave for the test center. It is important that you keep your body – and schedule – as normal as possible to ensure you are calm and collected come test-taking time.

10. Dress in loose, comfortable clothes and wear layers. Also, wear comfortable and breathable shoes. Although you will be seated, you don't want tight, restrictive clothing to serve as a distraction.

11. Many testing locations keep their air conditioner on high. You want to remember to bring a sweater or jacket in case the test center is too cold, as you never know how hot or cold the testing location could be.

12. Eat a breakfast with protein, fiber and good fats, such as eggs, avocado, oatmeal, whole-grain toast, berries, or nuts - all of which keep you full longer and your brain healthy.

13. Use caffeine as you normally would, and as sparingly as possible. Coffee, energy drinks, tea, chocolate and many soft drinks all contain caffeine. Therefore, be smart about what you put into your body. Just as with high carb or high sugar drinks and foods, many people tend to crash 3 to 4 hours after ingesting caffeinated products.

14. Bring an energizing snack to leave in your bag that doesn’t require refrigeration and isn’t messy or difficult to eat.Bring water, not sugary soda or sports drinks.

15. If you find that you have extra time and have made flashcards or a “cheat sheet” while studying, go through the high-yield subjects, as well as ones you might be struggling with.

16. Consider asking a friend or family member to take you to the testing location so you can continue to review your materials, not stress about transportation, and receive the extra moral support they can provide.

17. Aim to get to the test center at least 15-30 minutes early. This gives you time to adjust for several negative scenarios, such as bad traffic, a train, getting lost, lack of parking, or running into issues with your registration, for example.

18. Bring at least two pens and two pencils with good erasers, a calculator with new batteries and any other resources that your instructor allows you to take into the exam room. Make sure you clear any materials you are bringing in with the instructor first – you don’t want to be removed from the exam or have your exam forfeited because you broke an easy to avoid rule.

19. Bring a watch to the test so that you can better pace yourself. In the days leading up to the MTLE exam, consider using the watch to help time yourself so you grow accustomed to the amount of time it takes you to answer a question – as well as the amount of time you can realistically spend on a problem. If you use a digital watch, make sure it is permitted in the testing room.

20. Consider packing helpful healthcare products you might need in the case of an emergency, such as pain relievers like ibuprofen or acetaminophen.

21. If you can't study or review your materials because you're at the testing location, waiting for the exam to begin, or simply because of nerves, try meditating or focusing on your breathing.

22. Even if you don’t feel like it, use the restroom before entering the exam room. You don't want to waste time worrying about your bodily needs during the test. Furthermore, you can splash water on your face to help perk yourself up.

Once you’re ready for the big moment – exam time itself – you’re going to need to stay focused and choose your answers quickly and wisely. Our final exam tips cover what you can do while you are taking the MTLE test itself to raise your score.

23. Multiple studies have shown that individuals work harder and do better work when they’re slightly cold. While you don’t want to be uncomfortably cold – remember, always bring a jacket, just in case – being slightly cold will keep you alert and awake.

24. Don't pay attention to others around you. Don’t worry if someone seems to be going through the test much faster or slower than you. If someone around you is being loud or disruptive, asked to be moved.

25. Go with your gut when choosing an answer. Statistically, the answer that comes to mind first is often the right one. This is assuming you studied the material, of course, which we hope you have done if you read through one of our books!

26. For true or false questions: if you genuinely don't know the answer, mark it true. In most tests, there are typically more true answers than false answers.

27. For multiple choice questions, read ALL the answer choices before marking an answer, even if you think you know the answer when you come across it. You may find your original “right” answer isn’t necessarily the best option.

28. Look for key words: in multiple choice exams, particularly those that require you to read through a text, the questions typically contain key words. These key words can help the test taker choose the correct answer or confuse you if you don’t recognize them. Common keywords are: most, during, after, initially, and first.

29. Narrow answers down by using the process of elimination: after you understand the question, read each answer. If you don’t know the answer right away, use the process of elimination to narrow down the answer choices. It’s usually easy to identify at least one answer that isn’t correct.

30. Don't stay on a problem that you are stuck on, especially when time is a factor. Mark it, skip it and come back to it later once you’ve finished all the easier problems. Not only will this prevent you from wasting time, you may also find that you are able to approach the problem differently after some time away from it. If you are still stuck, return to: 1) Using the process of elimination, and 2) Going with your gut to choose your final answer.

We hope that these test-taking tips will help you do your best on exam day. For tips specific to the MTLE test, make sure you carefully read through our study guide on your exam. Our books include sidebars with helpful tips and facts relevant to your test. You’ll also want to read through your exam creator’s website to make sure that you bring everything necessary for your exam and study all relevant material. Finally, continue to check out our website, cirrustestprep.com for updated study materials!

Pearson Education, Inc. was not involved in the creation or production of this product, is not in any way affiliated with Cirrus Test Prep, and does not sponsor or endorse this product.


Member Login
Welcome, (First Name)!

Forgot? Show
Log In
Enter Member Area
My Profile Not a member? Sign up. Log Out