Praxis II Elementary Education - Reading & Language Arts (5002) Overview

What is the Praxis 5002?

The Praxis 5002, officially known as the Praxis Elementary Education Reading and Language Arts, is a subtest of the Praxis Elementary Education 5001 exam.

Individuals who are preparing to become certified as elementary school teachers take this exam.

The Praxis 5002 is designed to assess the examinee's knowledge and skills in reading and language arts, key areas that elementary teachers need to be proficient in to effectively educate their students.

The Praxis 5002 covers all of the foundational skills students need to be successful in reading and language arts in the elementary grades.

If you are trying to become a certified elementary education teacher, you will take the Praxis 5002 or an exam like it.

Most states want their teachers to have comprehensive knowledge in the area of reading and writing skills of early learners.

What does the Praxis 5002 consist of?

This subtest is designed to test your knowledge and understanding of child development during elementary school years as it relates to reading, writing, and speaking.

The assessment is not aligned to a particular grade or course, but it is aligned to the Common Core State Standards for English Language Arts.

The Reading and Language Arts Subtest is divided into the following two categories:

  1. Reading
  2. Writing, Speaking, and Listening

Within these two main content categories are several other key components:

Reading Foundational Skills

This section tests your understanding of phonological awareness, concepts of print, phonics, word recognition, and fluency.

Reading Literature and Informational Text

Here, your ability to comprehend and analyze literary and informational texts is assessed, including the interpretation of meaning, key ideas, and details.


This part measures your knowledge of writing types, purposes, and processes, including the use of grammar and conventions in writing.

Speaking and Listening

This section evaluates your understanding of the presentation of knowledge and ideas, comprehension, and collaboration in speaking and listening activities.


This category tests your knowledge and application of English language conventions, vocabulary usage, and language acquisition.

Each of these categories includes questions that test your knowledge of content as it relates to teaching reading to early learners.

Solid foundational skills in reading are imperative for student success as they progress through their K-12 education. Therefore, this exam's questions are designed to ensure you are able to both apply content knowledge and identify teaching resources that are developmentally appropriate for students.

You will be required to have an understanding of literature, text structures and organization, components of language in writing, literacy acquisition, reading instruction, and communication skills.

Finally, many of the questions are scenario-based, which means you will be presented with a classroom situation and will be required to choose the most effective approach to increase student achievement in the area of reading.

These questions can be quite challenging for new teachers who have limited experience in the classroom.

What is the passing score for the Praxis 5002?

Most states require at least a 157 to pass this subtest. However, South Dakota and Kentucky require a 150 and 151, respectively.

How many questions are on the Praxis Reading Language Arts?

You will have 90 minutes to complete approximately 80 questions on the Praxis 5002 subtest.

  • Reading - 38 questions
  • Writing, speaking, and listening - 42 questions

Please understand that you may have several additional questions on your test. ETS, the company that makes the exam, will often field test new items on the exams.

You will never know which test items count toward your score and which items are being field tested. You can learn more about this HERE.

Field testing items is common practice in the testing industry. Therefore, if you see a couple more questions on your exam, don’t panic. Just answer all the questions on your test.

The best ways to pass the Praxis Elementary 5002

Everyone is different in terms of how they want to prepare for the exam. People have different strengths and weaknesses, and it’s important you choose the right program for you.

The following are a few resources you can consider when preparing for this test.

The ETS Study Companion

The first and most important thing you can do to pass your Praxis 5002 test is to examine the test structure and content of the exam by reviewing the test specifications in the Praxis 5002 Study Companion.

This document is developed by ETS and shows you everything you are responsible for on the exam. It even has practice test questions similar to what you will see on test day.

Study Guides

Beyond that, most people prefer to use a study guide with practice tests to prepare for the exam.

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Our Praxis 5002 study guide is fully aligned with the test specifications and blueprint outlined in the ETS Study Companion. It also has hundreds of practice test questions for each content category, so you are fully prepared for the exam.

Online Courses

For those needing additional support, online courses with tutorial videos and practice are helpful.

We have a comprehensive, self-paced online course with hours of videos that will help you pass the Praxis 5002 test.

How many questions do I need to get right to pass?

It is difficult to predict exactly how many questions you must get correct to pass the Praxis 5002 because a scale score is used rather than a raw score. This means that your raw score—the number of questions you get correct—is put into a formula to calculate a scale score.

To keep things simple, we recommend scoring at least a 75% on the practice tests before you go in to take the exam. Getting 75% of the questions correct when practicing indicates you are ready to take the test.

Free resources for the Praxis 5002

There are many free resources you can use to pass the exam. Our Teaching Reading Playlist on our YouTube Channel is packed full of videos to help you with all the foundational skills tested on the exam.

You might also want to check out our free Praxis 5001 webinar, which includes prep for the Praxis 5002.

It comes with a free study guide, test strategy tips, and more. Just fill out this form and you will gain access to all of that.

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