The School Leaders Licensure Assessment (SLLA) 6990 exam is a standardized test that aspiring school administrators must pass in order to obtain certification in many states.
This exam is designed to evaluate the knowledge, skills, and abilities necessary to be an effective school leader.
Is the SLLA 6990 hard to pass?
Many test takers find the SLLA 6990 to be a difficult and challenging experience. Most of the questions are designed to assess critical thinking and problem-solving skills.
This makes the exam more challenging than other standardized tests that rely more heavily on memorization and rote learning.
The test questions on the SLLA 6990 are scenario-based, which means they require you to analyze a school situation, often accompanied by a data set, and then choose the most effective approach.
Sometimes when people look over the answer choices, they feel that there are several answers that could be the right one. This can be frustrating and anxiety-inducing. But I assure you, there is only one best or most effective answer.
Our SLLA 6990 study guide is the perfect tool to help you pass this exam.
If you need more support, consider investing in an online course. Our SLLA 6990 online course comes with hours of video tutorials for each section of the exam and comes with the digital study guide.
There is also comprehensive practice for the constructed response portion of the test.
One of the main reasons that the SLLA 6990 exam is considered difficult is that it covers a wide range of topics. It’s a big test divided into seven sections:
- Strategic Leadership
- Instructional Leadership
- Climate and Cultural Leadership
- Ethical Leadership
- Organizational Leadership
- Community Engagement Leadership
- Analysis (Constructed Response)
Each section contains a variety of questions related to topics such as curriculum development, budgeting, personnel management, and legal issues. Examinees must be well versed in all of these areas in order to pass the exam.
What’s on the SLLA 6990 exam?
In total, the SLLA consists of 120 selected-response (multiple choice) and 4 constructed-response (essay) questions.
The selected-response questions make up the majority of the exam, while the constructed-response questions require you to apply your knowledge in all areas of the test and write responses to 4, open-ended prompts. You will have four hours to complete the entire exam–165 minutes for the selected response, and 75 minutes for the constructed response.
Here's an overview of what you can expect to find on the SLLA:
Section 1: Strategic Leadership (20 questions)
- Mission, vision, goals, and core values
- Shared commitments to implement vision and goals
- Continuous improvement toward vision and goals
- Data analysis and decision-making
Section 2: Instructional Leadership (27 questions)
- Professional development and building capacity
- Rigorous curriculum and instruction
- Assessment and accountability
Section 3: Climate and Cultural Leadership (22 questions)
- Community of care and support for teachers of care and support for teachers
- Equity and cultural responsiveness
- Community of care and support for students
Section 4: Ethical Leadership (19 questions)
- Ethical and legal behavior
- Ethical values and beliefs
Section 5: Organizational Leadership (16)
- Managing operational systems
- Aligning and obtaining fiscal and human resources
- Protecting the welfare and safety of students and staff
Section 6: Community Engagement Leadership (16)
- Collaborate with families and other community members
- Community interests and needs
- Maximizing community resources
Section 7: Analysis (Constructed Response - 4 Questions)
- Strategic planning process
- Rigorous, standards-based curriculum
- Cultural competence
- Ethical and legal behavior
I have a 9-part webinar that goes through an overview of the test and the constructed response. Just sign up using your email, and you’ll gain access to the videos, free study guide, and resources. Check it out here.
What is the difference between the SLLA 6990 and the Praxis 5412?
Both the SLLA 6990 and the Praxis 5412 are leadership exams. The only difference between these two exams is that the SLLA 6990 has a constructed-response section, and the Praxis 5412 does not have a constructed-response section.
Everything else is the same. The content categories are the same, and the test specifications are the same.
- Strategic Leadership
- Instructional Leadership
- Cliamte and Cultural Leadership
- Ethical Leadership
- Organizational Leadership
- Community Engagement
- Analysis (CR)
|120 Selected-Response Questions||120 Selected-Response Questions|
|4 Constructed-Response Questions||No Constructed-Response Questions|
|4 hours total||2 hours 45 minutes for entire test|
How many questions are on the SLLA 6990?
There are approximately 120 selected-response questions and 4 constructed-response questions. The selected response is worth 75% of the test, and the constructed response is worth 25% of the test. Those scores are then combined and formulated for an overall scale score between 100-200.
How is the SLLA 6990 Scored?
Your total raw score for the assessment is the sum of the number of correct responses in the selected-response section plus a weighted sum of your scores on the constructed-response section, rounded to the nearest whole number.
According to the ETS SLLA 6990 Study Companion, the selected-response section accounts for 75% of the maximum possible total score, and the constructed-response section accounts for 25%.
Scores for the assessment are reported on a scale that ranges from 100 to 200. Your reported score (scaled score) is computed from your raw score (how many you got correct out of the total number of questions) and includes a statistical adjustment to compensate for differences in difficulty between alternate editions of the assessment.
This basically means that some test questions are worth more points than others because they are more difficult than others.
What is a passing score on the SLLA 6990?
Most states that use the SLLA 6990 set the passing score at a 151. Because ETS uses a scale score to calculate this, it is difficult to predict an exact score you need to pass.
For example, there are 120 questions on the selected-response section. And that portion of the exam is worth 75%. There are 4 constructed response questions worth up to 3 points each. And that portion of the test is worth 25% of the exam.
Let's say you get 77/120 correct on the multiple choice. That is 64% correct. However, that is worth 75% of the test. Therefore, you have to multiply 0.64 (64%) by 75%, which gives you 0.48 or 48%. Put that number aside.
Now let’s calculate the constructed response. Let’s say you got 6/12 points for the constructed response. That is 50%, but then you have to multiply that by 25% because the constructed response is worth 25% of the test. You get approximately 0.13 or 13%.
Now add the 48% from the selected response and 13% from the constructed response, and you get 61%. Drop the percent and add 100, and you get 161, which is considered passing.
This is a way to approximate your score, but is not an exact science. I do have a score calculator you can use to try to predict your score.
Keep in mind, some of the questions are worth more points than others. Therefore, trying to pinpoint an exact score is impossible.
Your best bet is to shoot for at least a 75% on the selected-response questions, and at least a 50% average on the constructed-response questions on practice tests in the study guide. If you can do this, you are in the safe zone for passing.
What is the passing score on the SLLA in Virginia and South Dakota?
If you’re getting certified in school leadership in Virginia or South Dakota, a passing score for the SLLA 6990 is 146. To learn more about passing scores by state, click here.
What is the pass rate for the SLLA 6990?
Unfortunately, there is little to no information on this. ETS does not release overall pass-rate data for the exams.
Some universities tout 93%-100% pass rates for students who attend their leadership programs. However, currently, there is no nation-wide pass-rate data available.
How long are scores valid for the SLLA 6990?
SLLA 6990 and Praxis 5412 scores are valid for 10 years.
What is the best way to study for the SLLA 6990?
With the right approach, it is possible to prepare effectively and pass the SLLA 6990. Here are some tips to help you study for the SLLA 6990:
1] Familiarize yourself with the exam format.
Most people skip this step and instead go right into taking practice tests. However, understanding the structure and content of the SLLA 6990 will help you think like a test maker by knowing exactly what types of questions you will encounter on different parts of the exam.
You will also be able to gauge how many questions per section you will see on test day.
2] Use the ETS Study Companion
The most effective resource to use when analyzing the structure of the exam is the ETS Study Companion.
In this document you will find the test blueprint, which shows you the main content categories on the exam, and the test specifications, which shows you the specific skills and topics you will need to know on test day.
This document is developed by the test makers, so to think like a test maker, you need to examine the SLLA 6990 Study Companion.
3] Use multiple study resources.
To maximize your chances of success, use a variety of study resources, such as the ETS SLLA 6990 Study Companion, online courses, study guides, and practice tests.
Each resource will provide a different perspective on the material, which can help you better understand the topics.
4] Take practice tests.
While this should not be the only thing you do to prepare, practice tests are the most effective way to measure your skills.
Use the practice tests to understand your performance on different parts of the exam. Choose practice tests that have detailed answer explanations so you know why you got something right and why you got something wrong.
5] Focus on your weaknesses.
As you study, pay attention to the areas where you are struggling. Spend extra time reviewing these topics, and consider seeking additional support, such as tutoring or coaching, if needed.
How long do I study for the SLLA 6990 exam?
The amount of time you should study for the SLLA 6990 depends on several factors, including your familiarity with the material, your experience as an educational leader, and your overall study habits. Generally, most individuals will need several weeks or even months to prepare effectively for the exam. Here are some tips to help you determine how long you should study for the SLLA 6990:
- Assess your knowledge and skills. Before you begin studying, take an assessment to determine your strengths and weaknesses in the key areas covered on the exam. This will help you identify the topics you need to focus on and how much time you may need to spend studying.
- Create a study plan. Determine how much time you have to study, what topics you need to focus on, and what resources you will use to prepare. Divide your study time into manageable chunks–20-30 minutes a day. Incremental practice is much more effective than cramming all of your studies into one or two weekends.
- Set a realistic timeframe. Depending on your current knowledge and experience, you may need anywhere from a few weeks to several months to prepare for the exam. Consider how much time you can realistically devote to studying each day or each week and plan accordingly.
- Stay consistent. Consistency is key when it comes to studying for the SLLA 6990. Try to study for a set amount of time each day or each week, and stick to your study plan as much as possible.
- Monitor your progress. As you study, monitor your progress regularly by taking practice tests or self-assessments. This will help you identify areas where you still need to improve and adjust your study plan as necessary.
What are the key mistakes people make when they fail the SLLA 6990?
There are two huge mistakes people make when they study for this exam.
- Taking practice tests over and over. Just using practice tests and ignoring all the other material in the study guide is a common mistake people make. Lots of people think that the way to pass is to just answer practice test questions over and over. Take a practice test in the beginning to determine your baseline skills. Then go into the study guide or online course and learn all the important information. You never know what questions you will get on the exam, so be sure you are prepared by absorbing as much content as you can for each category.
- Not practicing the constructed-response section. Lots of people look over the writing portion but never actually practice actually writing. This is also a mistake. You should use the writing prompts in the study guide and practice writing your constructed responses. Also, set a timer so you understand just how quickly 75 minutes goes by when you have to write 4 essays. Our online course has comprehensive constructed-response preparation.
Tips to pass SLLA 6990 Constructed Response
One of the most challenging sections of the exam is the Constructed Response portion, which requires test-takers to write well-crafted responses to open-ended questions. While this section can be daunting, there are strategies that can help test-takers score well on the Constructed Response portion of the SLLA 6990 exam.
- Work backwards when approaching the writing prompts. Read the tasks first, before reading the prompt. This will help you set the purpose for reading and writing before you tackle the prompt. It will also save you tons of time. Check out this video on working backwards on the constructed response.
- Analyze the prompt and its components. Some prompts will just have a scenario and others will include data sets. Read the question carefully and make sure you understand exactly what is being asked. Take note of any specific requirements, such as the number of points that need to be addressed, and make sure to answer the question completely.
- Plan your response. Once you understand the task and the prompt, take a few minutes to map your response. An effective way to do this is to make each task its own paragraph. Decide which points you will cover in each paragraph. This will help you stay organized and ensure that you address all aspects of the prompt.
- Use specific examples. To score well on the constructed response, it's important to use specific examples to support your answer. This shows that you have a deep understanding of the material and can apply it in real-world situations. Use relevant examples from your own experiences or from case studies to illustrate your points. Also, cite specifics from the data and scenario you’re given.
- Be concise. While it's important to provide a thorough answer, it's also important to be concise. The SLLA 6990 exam is timed, so you don't want to waste valuable time writing unnecessary information. Stick to the point and avoid repeating yourself.
- Use proper grammar and spelling. While you will not fail this part of the test for a few grammar mistakes, a well-written, professional response is essential for a success on the SLLA 6990.
- Use the rubric in the SLLA 6990 Study Companion. Conduct a self-assessment of your writing against the rubric in the study companion. Determine whether you have met all of the requirements and at what level.
- Practice, practice, practice. Finally, the key to success on the constructed response section is practice. Find practice prompts in our study guide or online. Remember, you can write multiple times to one prompt by changing your approach.
What is the best study guide for the SLLA 6990?
Find a study guide that is 100% aligned with the test blueprint and specifications. My study guide for the SLLA 6990 is structured so that every heading, every piece of information, and every practice problem is aligned with the test blueprint and specs.
In addition, all the practice test questions in my study guide have detailed answer explanations so you know why you got something correct and why you got something incorrect. The answer explanations are like their own chapter and are packed full of important information.
Finally, I identify the content category and subskill each question represents, so you understand the types of questions you will see for each section of the exam. This is key because organizational leadership questions are different from ethical leadership questions. You need to know the difference.
If you need more support, you may want to consider an online course. My SLLA 6990 online course comes with hours of video tutorials for each section of the exam and comes with the digital study guide. There is also comprehensive practice for the constructed response portion of the test.
Are the questions in your SLLA 6990 Study guide the same as the actual exam?
No. While our study guide is aligned with the test, it is against testing policy to share items on the actual exam. State tests are secure, standardized, and heavily regulated.
Just like you would not give students the exact questions on their state exams, you will not be provided the exact questions on the SLLA 6990.
In addition, it is impossible to predict what questions you will get on the exam. There are hundreds of test questions in the item banks for each exam. When you take the exam, your version of the test will be different from other versions and will have questions randomly pulled from the item banks. This ensures test security, validity, and reliability. Trying to memorize what you think will be on your test is an exercise in futility. Instead, you should study the skills and content outlined in the specifications and blueprint of the exam.
Everything in our study guide is aligned with the test specifications and blueprint for the exam. That way, you can review how the test is designed and what skills are assessed. The questions in our study guide are structured similarly to what you will encounter on test day, but they are not the same exact questions on the real exam.