When and Where Will Testing Take Place?

Test dates are held on Saturdays in December and January. Dates are assigned by school. Test locations and exact date(s) of testing are determined by the number of applications received. Parents will receive an email with test details by the end of November. Please make every effort to have your child attend the date(s) assigned to him/her. If you have a conflict with the date(s) or your child is sick on the day of the testing or the night before, please email advancedlearning@bsd405.org with your child’s name, grade, the test location and date(s). If there are extenuating circumstances, we may be able to reschedule your child. Illness will not be considered a valid reason for appeal.

Testing sessions are scheduled in the following manner:

Grade BSD Student Private/Home-School Student
1 Tests will be administered on two half days.

  • The CogAT is administered in the morning from approximately 8:00-11:30am.
  • The STAR Reading and Math assessments are administered in the afternoon.  Students will be scheduled to begin at 12:00pm or 2:00pm.

PLEASE NOTE:  Some BSD 1st grade students may take the STAR at school, however, those students will also take the STAR Reading and Math assessments again with us.

2 – 8 Only CogAT is administered on one half day from approximately 8:00-11:30am.  STAR tests are administered at school as part of the regular assessment process for BSD students, and results are collected from the district. Tests will be administered on one day.

  • CogAT is administered in the morning from approximately 8:00-11:30am.
  • A lunch break is provided.
  • STAR Reading and Math assessments are administered in the afternoon from approximately 12:00-1:30pm.
9 – 11 Tests will be administered on one day.

  • CogAT is administered in the morning from approximately 8:00-11:30am.
  • A lunch break is provided.
  • IOWA Reading and Math assessments are administered in the afternoon from approximately 12:00-2:30pm.

PLEASE NOTE: If your child is attending BSD on an inter-district transfer and is identified as in need of advanced learning, services are only provided through differentiation in the current school setting for which that transfer applies.


Winter Testing Dates

In-District Students:

GRADES DATE CogAT STAR IOWA
1 January 12, 2019  AND
January 26, 2019
AM  PM
2 – 4 January 12, 2019  OR
January 26, 2019
AM
5 – 8 December 8, 2018 AM
9 – 11 December 8, 2018 AM PM

Private/Home-School Students:

GRADES DATE CogAT STAR IOWA
1 December 8, 2018 AM
1 January 12, 2019 PM
2 – 8 December 8, 2018 AM PM
9 – 11 December 8, 2018 AM PM

What tests do you use for placement?

The CogAT measures how students process information to reach a solution, and results are based upon each student’s level of cognitive development. Questions require reasoning skills and are not academic in nature.  The STAR Assessments and Iowa Assesments measure skills that are taught and practiced in school. 


1st Grade through 11th Grade

Cognitive Abilities Test 7 (CogAT 7)

For Grades 1-11

The Cognitive Abilities Test 7 measures general and specific reasoning abilities in three areas.  The CogAT is administered at one grade level above the student’s grade of enrollment.  This assessment includes the following subtests:

  • Verbal – The CogAT Verbal Battery is used to assess a student’s vocabulary, efficiency and verbal memory, ability to determine word relationships, and the ability to comprehend ideas. The CogAT Verbal test is comprised of three subtests. For lower levels, these subtests are: Sentence Completion, Picture Classification, and Picture Analogies. For higher levels, these three subtests are: Sentence Completion, Verbal Classification, and Verbal Analogies. These three subtests combined make up the CogAT Verbal score.
  • Nonverbal – The CogAT Nonverbal Battery is used to assess a student’s reasoning abilities through the use of spatial and figural content. There is no reading required to complete the CogAT Nonverbal test. These three subtests are: Figure Matrices, Paper Folding, and Figure Classification. These three subtests combined make up the CogAT Nonverbal score.
  • Quantitative –  The CogAT Quantitative Battery assesses students’ quantitative reasoning and problem solving abilities. This section also evaluates the students’ level of abstract reasoning. The CogAT Quantitative Battery is comprised of three subtests: Number Series, Number Puzzles, and Number Analogies. These three subtests combined make up the CogAT Quantitative score.

The CogAT is a paper and pencil test.  First graders bubble the answer directly into the booklet and students in grades 2 – 11 use a separate bubble sheet on which they record their answers. View an example

STAR Assessments (STAR)

For Grades 1-8

The STAR Assessments are used to measure reading and math achievement. STAR Assessments are computer-based and adaptive, which adjusts the difficulty of questions throughout the assessment based upon students’ responses.  STAR is highly rated in regard to reliability, validity, and generalizability, especially for diverse populations.  The STAR is administered at grade level, because it is adaptive, thus moving students to higher level questions based upon successful completion of grade level questions.  This assessment includes the following subtests:

  • Reading – The program uses traditional reading comprehension passages to assess forty-six reading skills across eleven domains.  The assessment consists of approximately thirty questions. Students are tested on foundational reading skills, literature components, reading informational text, and language.  Students have one minute to answer each question before the program automatically moves them to the next question.  The program is adaptive, so the difficulty will increase or decrease based on how a student performs
  • Mathematics – The program assesses 49 sets of math skills in 11 domains for grades one through eight.  The domains include counting and cardinality, ratios and proportional relationships, operations and algebraic thinking, the number system, geometry, measurement and data, expressions and equations, numbers and operations in base 10, fractions, statistics and probability, and functions.  Students have one minute to answer each question before the program automatically moves them to the next question.  The program is adaptive, so the difficulty will increase or decrease based on how a student performs.

The STAR test is completed on a laptop with a mouse both at school and when testing with the Advanced Learning Office.

PLEASE NOTE:  BSD students in grades 2 – 8 take the STAR Assessments at school.  The STAR will be administered to BSD 1st graders and private/home-school students on their assigned test date, if not provided by their school.

CogAT 7 Testing Level

Listed below is the test level that we use for your child’s current grade (testing in December/January) or for the grade that your child just completed (testing in July). Please note that the table below represents a test level one grade level above the grade of enrollment.

Grade Level Method
1 8 Teacher read, paced*
*up to 15 minutes each subtest
2 9 Student read, timed
3 10 Student read, timed
4 11 Student read, timed
5 12 Student read, timed
6 13 Student read, timed
7 14 Student read, timed
8 15 Student read, timed
9 16 Student read, timed
10 17 Student read, timed
11 18 Student read, timed

CogAT Form 7 Batteries

Battery Subtests
Verbal Picture/Verbal Analogies
Sentence Completion
Picture/Verbal Classification
Quantitative Number Analogies
Number Series
Number Puzzles
Nonverbal Figure Matrices
Figure Classifications
Paper Folding

Iowa Assessments (IOWA)

For Grades 9-11

The IOWA Assessments are used to measure reading and math achievement.  The Iowa is administered at one grade level above the student’s grade of enrollment.  This assessment includes the following subtests:

  • Reading – Reading includes the following sub-categories, each progressing in difficulty as test levels increase:
    • Literary Text
    • Informational Text
    • Vocabulary
    • Explicit Meaning
    • Implicit Meaning
    • Key Ideas
    • Author’s Craft
  • Mathematics – The Mathematics subtest contains these same sub-categories in every level:
    • Number Sense and Operations
    • Algebraic Patterns and Connections
    • Data Analysis, Probability, & Statistics
    • Geometry
    • Measurement

The IOWA is a paper and pencil test.  Students use a separate bubble sheet on which they record their answers.

Learn more on the Houghton Mifflin Harcourt / Riverside Publishing website.

Iowa Testing Level

Listed below is the test level that we use for your child’s current grade (testing in December/January) or for the grade that your child just completed (testing in July). Please note that the table below represents a test level one grade level above the grade of enrollment.

Grade Level Method
9 16 Student read, timed
10 17 Student read, timed
11 18 Student read, timed

How do I appeal my child’s test results?

Appeals must be based upon one of the following conditions:

Specific criteria related to the testing conditions

Misapplication or miscalculation of the scores

Advanced Learning Department assessment criteria is applied equitably to all applicants. For students not meeting the entrance criteria, appeals for further consideration can be made.

Appeals must be based upon one of the following two reasons listed to the left. If you believe one of these conditions applies to your child, you will need to submit an appeals form within ten days of receiving results. Illness will not be considered a valid reason for appeal. Please note: appeals cannot be submitted via fax.

Appeals are reviewed by an Appeals Committee that consists of the Department Administrator, Psychologist, Principal, and Teacher. All submitted documents are closely and carefully reviewed. The Appeals Committee may request teacher input. The Committee is looking for evidence that the results of the testing are not a true representation of the child’s abilities. The decision of the Appeals Committee is final.

Appeals for K-1

The assessments collected for all K and new first grade students are part of the screening process. These assessments (observation, TRC, classroom data, DIBELS and the WAKids State Assessments) were administered to all K and new first grade students to determine their educational needs, and the results are utilized to determine if there is a need for further testing and possible inclusion in advanced learning services. Appeals for K-1 services are only valid after further testing has been conducted and reviewed by the multi-disciplinary team, and a decision regarding services has been rendered.