What to Expect from the NES PE Exam

The National Evaluation Series (NES) examinations are used by State Boards of Education when assessing subject and knowledge of prospective teachers. NES examinations, which are 100 percent computer-based, are offered by appointment on a year-round basis at their extensive network of professional testing centers.

The NES physical education examination, which is utilized for licensure/certification purposes, is based on professionally reviewed and accepted academic standards, including the American Alliance for Health, Physical Education, Recreation, and Dance: Standards for Initial Preparation of Physical Education Teachers.

National Evaluation Series Physical Education Exam: What to Expect

The NES Physical Education, which consists of 150 multiple-choice questions, is currently being utilized by the State Boards of Education in Arizona and Oregon. Test takers have 3 hours to complete the NES PE Exam. The National Benchmark Score for this examination is 220. The examination fee is $95, and test takers may view their scaled score immediately upon finishing the examination.

The test framework for the NES PE examination includes (and their percentage of the test score):

Growth and Motor Development: 25 percent

Assessment of growth and motor development knowledge includes:

  • Understanding the stages and characteristics of human growth and development
  • Understanding concepts and principles of anatomy and physiology as they relate to movement and physical fitness
  • Understanding principles, sequences, and characteristics of motor development and motor learning

Therefore, test takers should be able to demonstrate their knowledge of the characteristics of physical, social, cognitive, and emotional development during infancy, childhood, adolescence, and adulthood. Further, they must be able to recognize factors that influence physical, cognitive, social, and emotional growth and development; analyze how physical fitness patterns are likely to change throughout the life span; distinguish between functions, actions, and physiological processes of the major body systems; and analyze factors that affect physical fitness and performance and strategies for addressing these factors, among others.

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Movement Activities: 25 percent

Movement activities deal with:

  • Understanding fundamental movement concepts and skills and principles of biomechanics
  • Understanding principles, techniques, skills, activities, organizational strategies, and safety practices for sports and recreational activities
  • Understanding principles, techniques, skills, activities, organizational strategies, and safety practices for rhythmic movement and dance; stunts, tumbling, and educational gymnastics; and cooperative, group, and adventure activities

Just a few of the areas covered within this content category include: demonstrating knowledge of how to promote understanding of fundamental movement concepts; identifying characteristics and critical elements of locomotor and non-locomotor skills; and identifying critical elements, techniques, and proper form for executing a number of movements in fundamental and complex sports skills.

Lifelong Physical Fitness: 25 percent

Lifelong physical fitness deals with:

  • Understanding the principles and components of physical fitness as they relate to health, including activities for promoting flexibility, cardiorespiratory endurance, muscular strength and endurance, and body composition
  • Understanding procedures, resources and principles for developing and maintaining physical activity/fitness and weight management plans
  • Understanding the relationship between physical activity and the development of responsible personal and social behavior and traits

The Physical Education Program: 25 percent

The physical education program consists of the following areas:

  • Understanding how children and adolescents learn and how to provide them with physical education opportunities that support their physical, cognitive, social, and emotional development
  • Understanding how to plan, implement, and evaluate physical education instructional activities, including how to adapt activities for diverse learning needs
  • Understanding ethical, legal, professional, and safety guidelines and practices related to physical education


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How to Prepare for the NES PE Exam

There are a number of ways prospective PE teachers can prepare to take the NES Physical Education Examination:

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