The (CBEST) California Basic Educational Skills Test is a standardized test administered throughout the state of California and Oregon for individuals who want to teach at public schools and gain a credential. The CBEST is designed to test basic reading, mathematics, and writing skills found to be important for the job of an educator; the test is not designed to measure the ability to teach those skills.


CBEST Test Section # of Questions Content
READING 50 multiple-choice questions Critical analysis and evaluation
Comprehension and research skills
MATHEMATICS 50 multiple-choice questions Estimation, measurement, and statistical principles
Computation and problem solving
Numerical and graphic relationships
WRITING 2 essay topics One topic to analyze a given situation or statement
One topic to write about a specified personal experience


Computer-Based Testing: Offered Year-Round

The CBEST is available for computer-based testing year-round by appointment, Monday through Saturday (excluding some holidays), on a first-come, first-served basis. Computer-based testing is offered at over 30 test centers in California and over 250 test centers nationwide. Scores will be reported within 2 weeks of testing. For more information visit the Pearson Education, Inc website: http://www.pearsonvue.com/cbest/.

Note that there are ongoing test date postponements and cancellations due to COVID-19 related closures. See https://www.ctcexams.nesinc.com/ for up-to-date information.

Paper-Based Testing

2020-2021 Test Dates Registration Deadline Late Registration Deadline Emergency Registration Deadline Online Score Release
Sept. 26, 2020 Aug. 21, 2020 Sept. 11, 2020 Sept. 18, 2020 Oct. 12, 2020
Dec. 5, 2020 Oct. 30, 2020 Nov. 20, 2020 Nov. 27, 2020 Dec. 21, 2020
Feb. 20, 2021 Jan. 15, 2021 Feb. 5, 2021 Feb. 12, 2021 March 8, 2021
May 1, 2021 March 26, 2021 April 16, 2021 April 23, 2021 May 17, 2021
July 10, 2021 June 4, 2021 June 25, 2021 July 2, 2021 July 26, 2021