Standardized Tests in Georgia
About Georgia’s Criterion-Referenced Competency Test (CRCT)
If you have a child in elementary, middle or high school in Georgia, then you need to know about the standardized tests your child will be taking. To comply with the federal No Child Left Behind (NCLB) Act of 2001, Georgia administers standardized tests to students beginning in 1st grade through high school.
Time4Learning, an online education service that teaches many of the skills these exams test, offers this page to help you understand Georgia’s standardized tests and how you can help your children prepare.
In Georgia, students in 1st through 8th grade take a standards-based test called the Criterion-Referenced Competency Test (CRCT). Criterion-referenced means that test items are based on grade-specific Georgia academic content standards as outlined in the Georgia Performance Standards (GPS).
The CRCT tests students in reading, English language arts and math in first through eighth grade. In addition, students in 3rd through 8th grade take science and social studies tests. Students in 3rd, 5th and 8th grade also complete a writing test. The eighth grade writing assessment is also called the Middle Grades Writing Assessment (MGWA).
Additional GA Standardized Tests
There are a number of other standards-based tests that students in Georgia have to take. Those who are enrolled in any of the following classes take End-of-Course Tests (EOCTs) in those subjects:
- Mathematics I: Algebra/Geometry/Statistics
- Mathematics II: Geometry/Algebra II/Statistics
- United States History
- Economics/Business/Free Enterprise
- Physical Science
English Language Arts
- 9th Grade Literature and Composition
- American Literature and Composition
GHSWT and GHSGT
To graduate from high school, 11th grade students must take and pass two tests:
- the Georgia High School Writing Test (GHSWT), which is given in the fall, and
- the Georgia High School Graduation Test (GHSGT), which is administered in the spring and tests the subjects of English language arts, math, science and social studies.
Students who do not pass the GHSWT or GHSGT the first time can retake the test up to four additional times before the end of 12th grade.
GAA and GKAP-R
Georgia also administers the Georgia Alternate Assessment (GAA) for students with significant cognitive disabilities, and the Georgia Kindergarten Assessment Program-Revised (GKAP-R), which tests to see if kindergarten students are ready for first grade.
Iowa Tests of Basic Skills (ITBS/A)
In addition to the CRCT, MGWA, EOCT, GHSWT and GHSGT, which compare Georgia students to their in-state peers, school districts may elect to administer the Iowa Tests of Basic Skills (ITBS/A), a norm-referenced test that compares the reading, math, science and social studies skills of Georgia students in elementary and middle school to their peers across the U.S. The test can be given once in the 3rd, 4th or 5th grade and once more in the 6th, 7th or 8th grade.
What do the CRCT and Other Standardized Test Scores Mean?
For the CRCT and the MGWA, students receive one of three scores for each of the subject areas tested:
- Exceeds standards
- Meets standards
- Does not meet standards
For the EOCT, GHSWT and the GHSGT tests in math and social studies, students receive one of three scores for each subject tested:
- Pass plus
For the GHSGT tests in English language arts and science, students receive one of four scores for each subject:
- Advanced proficiency
- Basic proficiency
- Below basic
CRCT test scores do not determine if a student will be promoted to the next grade or held back. However, students who receive low scores on any of the standardized tests might need additional instruction in those subject areas.
Preparing for Georgia’s CRCT Test
For general tips on test preparation, please visit our standardized test overview page. The real preparation for the CRCT, and all standardized tests that assess a wide range of fundamental skills, is to steadily build and master skills in math, reading and writing fundamentals.
Parents can help students succeed in school by making a special effort to get involved in their children’s education. You should ensure your children are doing their homework every night and reading and writing on a daily basis. In addition, families can hire tutors or use online learning programs such as Time4Learning and Time4Writing to supplement their children’s schoolwork and help to build fundamental skills.
To help your children prepare for state standardized tests such as Georgia’s CRCT, you can enroll your children in a test prep program or buy books to help them become familiar with test formats and terminology, to learn test-taking strategies (when to guess, when not to), to become comfortable with time restrictions, and to practice answering different types of questions.
For instance, when a reading passage is followed by comprehension questions, many test prep programs teach students to scan the questions prior to reading the passage so that they can pay special attention to the areas addressed by questions.
Most states release copies of tests or sample test questions from previous years. Parents can use these released test questions as resources to help students practice test skills and students can spend the majority of their time reviewing the key concepts within the sample test questions.
Time4Learning is not a test prep program; instead, it is a program that builds the skills that will be tested.
Time4Learning is a new approach that takes advantage of today’s technology. It’s a convenient, online home education program that combines learning with fun educational teaching games.
The online language arts and math curriculum comprise a comprehensive program for preschool, elementary school, and middle school. Science and social studies programs are provided as a free bonus for most grades.
Kids like using the computer to learn and to develop their skills. Time4Learning’s educational teaching games give students independence as they progress at their own pace.
Parents like that it tracks progress and helps kids advance by teaching through individualized learning paths that assure mastery of the skills and concepts that makes kids succeed.
Have a child with math and reading skills at different grade levels? No problem, just tell us in the online registration process.
Time4Learning is proven effective, has a low monthly price, and provides a money-back guarantee so you can be sure that it works for your family, risk free!