PACIFIC GATES EDUCATION SERVICES
Professor J. Scott Husted Ph.D., Education Specialist, evaluates student performance as well as provides recommendations to improve teaching and learning in private and home schools. Pacific Gates Education Services is a professional outreach of Pacific Gates Education based in the Central Coast of California.
Achievement Testing -- WRAT, SAT, Woodcock-Johnson, CAT/Terra Nova
Learning Styles/Special Needs Assessment
TEACHING and LEARNING ASSESSMENT
Legal Options in California
OVERVIEW OF STUDENT ASSESSMENT OPTIONS
Stanford Achievement Test (SAT; High School Version – TASK)
This is the top-rated, nationally standardized test. The Stanford is a subject-based grade level skills indicator which may be administered in a group. As such it assesses grade-level skills in English, Reading, Mathematics, general knowledge in Science and Social Studies, listening skills through grade eight, and includes the scores from science/social studies in the Complete Composite score.
The test should take 2-4 days to administer depending on students, and students should be given all the time they need as long as they are working productively. This test may be given to grades K-12 and may also be coupled with a cognitive test called the OLSAT. The Stanford 10 is the newest Stanford Test.
Note: This test is not to be confused with the Scholastic Achievement Test, which is for college entry.
Wide Range Achievement Test (WRAT)
Although this test can be completely administered in 30-45 minutes, it is extremely accurate as a wide-range assessment of basic learning skills. This is not a subject-based grade level test. The WRAT4 is administered one-on-one and is used to assess general skills in Reading, Spelling, Sentence Comprehension and Math Computation. It does not assess skills in science, social science, or reference skills. Since the test is so short, it works especially well for children with ADD.
Woodcock-Johnson Test of Achievement (WJ3)
The Woodcock-Johnson is used widely in school systems to determine eligibility for learning disabilities services, as well as for gifted programs. The test must be administered one-on-one. This test provides flexibility; the proctor has 20+ subtests to choose from and can combine these various subtests to meet any special testing needs. The test has oral sections, written sections, and timed and untimed sections–it is not a multiple choice test. The WJ3 can be used for ages 4 through adult.
California Achievement Test (CAT/Terra Nova)
This test is used among Christian schools and homeschools because it is said to contain more traditional values. The CAT is a timed test. Some test suppliers no longer carry the CAT/5 version of the California Achievement test because it is considered an older test first published in the 1970s. The CAT/5 has outdated vocabulary and pictures to which many young students cannot relate. The demand for the CAT/5 is now so low that the publisher no longer prints and scores that particular version of the CAT.
Many suppliers have changed to the CAT/6, normed in 2005 and now known as the TerraNova 2nd Edition. It is the same test as the CAT/6. There is also a TerraNova 3rd Edition, normed in 2011. For the CAT test only, you should order the test level for the grade your child will be going into next year, not the grade he is completing.
Standardized test publishers regulate the use of their tests closely in order to protect the reliability of their norms. Thus, they usually do not sell tests directly to the public, including homeschool parents. Standardized tests are available to homeschools in a variety of ways. However, they must guarantee the test publishers that certain conditions are met.