The Testing center administers all standardized tests required by the state and assists with Advanced Placement and school exams. As test dates become available they will be posted here and on our website calendar. When the majority of the school is testing, we run an adjusted bell schedule and seniors who do not need to test may have different arrival times. Please check the weekly news and calendar for information and updates.
The ACT is one of two options for admissions tests required by many four-year colleges (the other is the SAT). The ACT tests four subjects: English, Reading, Math and Science plus an optional writing test (essay). It is an increasingly popular alternative to the SAT. The ACT is now accepted by all schools across the country. The ACT is scored on a 1-36 basis (the average score is about 20 or 21). The College and Career Readiness department manages the test.
Advanced Placement (AP)
The College Board’s Advanced Placement (AP) Program provides participating students with the opportunity to take college-level courses while still in high school and earn college credit, advanced placement, or both. HISD administers a possible 37 examinations, covering 22 subject areas, in May at participating schools. Additional benefits to students include opportunities that lead to scholarships and/or recognition.
Credit by Exam
HISD's Credit by Exam (CBE) program enables students in grades K-12 without prior instruction to advance to a higher grade level or test out of a high-school course. CBE also helps students to pass a failed course and it helps previously home-schooled students, students from unaccredited private schools or foreign schools, and students whose records are unavailable with placement in the appropriate grade level. Student Assessment funds credit advancement administrations twice a year. The campus or the parents normally pay for credit recovery and special cases.
Final Exams: Grades 6-12
As part of course requirements; teachers administer final exams to secondary students.Formative Assessments: EdPlan
K-12 Formative Assessment web-based tool that allows teachers to create formative assessments in the areas of Reading, Math, Science and Social Studies. EdPlan tracks student data and can produce compressive reports with intervention groups. This tool will also be utilized for district benchmarks in the year 2013-14 in replacement of Campus Online. Currently students can take the assessments online, through a scantron and using clickers. Test items housed in the delivery system are from the NWEA content collection. Spanish items are only available for 3-5th grade.G/T Testing (NNAT)
The NNAT measures students' nonverbal reasoning and general problem-solving abilities, regardless of the language the students speak or the students' educational or cultural backgrounds. HISD administers the 30-minute test to all Vanguard program applicants in K-12, for universal testing and Limited English Proficient (LEP) students new to the district without abilities scores.NAEP (National Assessment of Education Progress)
The National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP) is the largest nationally representative and continuing assessment of what America's students know and can do in various subject areas. Assessments are conducted periodically in mathematics, reading, science, writing, the arts, civics, economics, geography, U.S. history, and beginning in 2014, in Technology and Engineering Literacy (TEL). Since NAEP assessments are administered uniformly using the same sets of test booklets across the nation, NAEP results serve as a common metric for all states and selected urban districts. The assessment stays essentially the same from year to year, with only carefully documented changes. This permits NAEP to provide a clear picture of student academic progress over time.
PSAT/NMSQT (Preliminary SAT/National Merit Scholarship Qualifying Test)
The PSAT/NMSQT is a standardized test that measures critical reading skills, math problem-solving skills, and writing skills. Cosponsored by the College Board and National Merit Scholarship Corporation and given to all HISD ninth, tenth, and eleventh grade students who are not exempt from the TAKS, it provides practice for the SAT Reasoning Test and enables students to compete for National Merit scholarships. Under College and Career Readiness department, its administration occurs during the school day for all 9th, 10th, and 11th grade students at district expense.
SATRequired by many colleges for application for admission, the SAT Reasoning Test measures the critical-thinking and problem-solving skills needed for academic success in college. It includes sections on critical reading, math, and writing. Given publicly seven times a year, high-school juniors and seniors typically take the SAT Reasoning Test. Starting in April 2011, HISD provides a school-day administration of the SAT free to all eleventh grade students as a way to encourage more students to take the college entrance assessment. The College and Career Readiness department manages the test.STAAR End of Course (EOC) Assessments
In 2011-2012, the state of Texas moved from the state-funded TAKS assessment program to the STAAR (State of Texas Assessment of Academic Readiness). STAAR is a standardized assessment program that is mandated and funded by the state through the Texas Education Agency (TEA). The STAAR End-of-Course program replaced the graduation requirement for all students who entered Grade 8 in 2011-2012. End-of-Course assessments are required for English I, English II, Algebra I, Biology and U.S History.STAAR L*: Available for 3-8 and EOC
State-mandated criterion referenced assessments used to measure students’ performance in meeting the state’s curriculum standards. Linguistically accommodated STAAR Mathematics, Science, and Social Studies assessments available for ELLs who-
- are not most appropriately assessed with STAAR Spanish, AND
- have not yet attained a TELPAS advanced high Reading rating in grades 2 or above, AND
- have been enrolled in U.S. schools for 3 school years or less starting with first grade (5 school years or less if a qualifying unschooled asylum or refugee)
Not permitted for an ELL whose parents or guardian has declined bilingual/ESL program servicesTELPAS (Texas English-Language-Proficiency Assessment System)
TELPAS assesses the English Language proficiency of K-12 ELLs in four language domains-listening, speaking, reading, and writing. It fulfills federal requirements for annually assessing the English language proficiency of K-12 limited English proficient students (LEP). ELLs are required to be assessed annually until they meet bilingual/ESL program exit criteria and are reclassified as Non-LEP. The assessment components for grades K-1 and 2-12 differ in the following ways:
- Grades K-1: TELPAS includes holistically rated listening, speaking, reading, and writing assessments based on ongoing classroom observations and student interactions.
- Grades 2-12: TELPAS includes multiple-choice reading tests, holistically rated student writing collections, and holistically rated listening and speaking assessments. The listening and speaking assessments are based ongoing classroom observations and student interactions.
To do your best on test days, you should always get a good night sleep and eat a good breakfast. The cell phone policy is strictly enforced during all types of tests and students are required to turn in their cell phones to the test administrator before testing begins. The phones are returned before the students are dismissed from their testing locations.
The pressure to perform well on college entrance exams leads many students and their parents to consider taking a professional course to prepare for the SAT or ACT. Please read more on our College Entrance Exam Test Preparation webpage.
For more information or to ask any questions, please contact