Elementary & Intermediate Level Science
New York State requires that an intermediate-level science test be administered in Grade 8 and an elementary-level science test is to be administered in Grade 4 to serve as a basis for determining students’ need for academic intervention services in science. These tests are designed to measure the content and skills contained in the New York State Science Core Curriculum. The core curriculum is based on the New York State Learning Standards for Mathematics, Science, and Technology. The New York State science tests consist of two required components: a Written Test and a Performance Test. The Written Test consists of multiple-choice and open-ended questions. The performance Test consists of hands-on tasks set up at multiple stations. While these assessments are produced and administered according to New York State Education Department guidelines, testing in science is required by our federal government.
Who takes these exams?
All students take these exams in Grade 4 and in Grade 8. Students with severe disabilities (less than 2% of students) take the New York State Alternate Assessments (NYSAA) in place of these exams.
How are the results of these assessments used?
The results of these assessments are one measure that is used to determine students' progress in science. While we use individual student data to make instructional decisions, we also look at results of schools and the district as a whole as one way to help determine the effectiveness of our science program.
How much time do these assessments take to administer?
In Grade 4, students have up to 60 minutes to complete the written test and approximately 75 minutes for the Performance Test. In Grade 8, students have up to 2 hours to complete the written test and approximately 45 minutes for the Performance Test. Both assessments are usually administered in schools at the end of May and beginning of June.