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Download Printable Summary of the Illinois ISAT and PSAE
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Students in Illinois take two different assessments during their school years. In grades 3-8 the assessment is called the Illinois State Achievement Test (ISAT). At the high school level it is called the Prairie State Achievement Examination (PSAE). The Illinois State Achievement test assesses students’ knowledge in Reading and Mathematics in grades 3-8 and Science in grades 4-7. The Prairie State Achievement Examination tests students in the 11th grade in Reading, Mathematics and Science.
The state assessments are designed to determine how students are achieving based on the Illinois State Frameworks for learning. These frameworks describe the content area skills students should be developing through their education. For students in grades 3-8 scores are used to determine levels of proficiency and where there is a need for increased instructional support.
Students take the Illinois State Achievement Tests (ISAT) during grades 3 through 8 in Reading and Mathematics. The Reading Assessment covers topics including: reading comprehension, reading strategies and literature. The Writing Assessment is based on the learning standard of being able to write for a variety of purposes, although it is not being administered during the 2011-2012 school year.
The Mathematics Assessments covers topics that include: number sense, measurement, algebra, geometry and data analysis (statistics & probability). The Science Assessment is based on the following learning standards: the scientific process, life science, physical science, earth and space science and science, technology and society. All the ISAT Assessments are given during a testing-window in March. Schools and districts will provide specific times and dates.
The questions on the Illinois State Achievement Tests (ISAT) in Reading, Mathematics and Science are in multiple-choice, short-response and extended-response formats. These assessments are given in March over three 45-minute sessions, an additional 10 minutes is offered to all students and students requiring timing accommodations will receive their necessary accommodations.
The Prairie State Achievement Examination (PSAE) Reading test is aligned to the content laid out in the Illinois State Frameworks. The areas covered are reading for understanding, vocabulary development, reading strategies and comprehension.