Many times I am asked about tests and testing. Here are some helpful pieces of information that should answer most of those questions. Since most of my testing clientele is done in VA, this information is written particularly with them in mind. Check your state homeschool laws to be sure about the requirements where you live.
The VA law says that registered homeschoolers must be tested or assessed for progress for that school year. Your child may be tested in a group, tested privately using a standardized test, or your child may be evaluated. Testing may be done any time in the spring or summer as long as the results are turned in to the appropriate school system by Aug. 1 each year. Be sure to allow enough time for the tests to be ordered, administered, and the results to be returned to you and then to the school system (at least 8 weeks). The type of test is to be determined by the parent, not the public schools.
If you do not live in Virginia, you can find out what your State’s law is at HSLDA.
The Iowa Test of Basic Skills – (ITBS) Offered by The Testing Lady
The Iowa Test of Basic Skills is a solid test. It takes 2-3 days to administer. This test can be given to grades K-12. It can be coupled with a cognitive test called the CogAT. (The CogAT would need to be ordered through BJU.)
***The following are not offered by The Testing Lady***
California Achievement Test – (CAT)
The CAT-5 is the newest California test and getting old. The CAT’s are no longer being published. The TerraNova has taken its place and some may refer to it as the CAT 6 or the CAT 6/TerraNova.
The TerraNova is a solid and up-to-date test with current norms. It is a timed “bubble” test and is becoming popular. The Complete Battery takes about 6 hours which should be divided into 2-3 days and can be administered to grades K-12. There is also a survey version of the test which can be administered in one setting. Both are reliable tests.
The Stanford Achievement Test – (SAT – not to be confused with the Scholastic Achievement Test)
The Stanford 10 is the newest Stanford Test. This test is becoming old and the publisher is talking about not scoring it much longer. It is being phased out. The last time I spoke with the publisher, they were not sure what test would take its place.
There are many other “bubble” tests that may be used to test academic achievement. They may be given as a group test or given individually. Virginia is now accepting the ACT’s and SAT’s (college entrance exams) as end of year testing. Only approved testsites may offer these tests. Go to www.collegeboard.com for more information.
**Parents, please be sure that YOU send test results to the appropriate school system by the state’s deadline. This is your responsibility. I do not send your results to any school system.**