Stepping into the leadership role of a public school principal requires skill, knowledge and professionalism. In the State of Texas, individuals seeking careers as public school principals must first pass the TExES Principal’s Exam. This multiple-choice exam covers a range of information that principals must know to create an optimal learning environment for students, faculty and administrators. Regardless of your learning style, various exam preparation resources can help you pass the exam and earn your principal certification.

Review the preparation manual, which can be found online at the Texas Education Agency's website. The manual provides you with the exam’s framework as well as testing and scoring procedures. The exam candidates are tested in three domain areas: school community leadership, instructional leadership and administrative leadership. The manual highlights the core competencies of each domain that you must know to pass the exam.

Take a practice test. The practice exams include the same type of questions that appear on the actual principal’s exam. Take the practice under the same time constraint as the actual exam. Score your test. Based on your answers you will know which subjects require more study time.

Take a preparation course. Several colleges and universities offer TExES principal exam courses. For example, Stephen F. Austin State University offers a course called Synthesis in Educational Leadership. The course covers topics such as campus vision, managing the organization, operations and resources and collaborating with families and community members. Contact your local college or university and ask whether a TExES principal exam preparation course is offered.

Join an exam preparation study group. Study group members share study materials, test-taking strategies and even tutor each other.

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