Free KSA Practice Test

The Kansas State Assessments (KSA) is for children in public schools in the state of Kansas in grades 3 through 8 and either grades 9, 10, or 11 (different exams are taken by children in different grades). The purposes of the various tests are to monitor student progress in core academic subjects. The assessments are designed to be aligned with curricular standards that are developed by the state. The tests have been designed to be very closely aligned with the exact standards children are expected to have attained.

Students who take the KSA receive one of the following five scores for each subject area that is tested: exemplary, exceeds standards, meets standards, approaches standards, or academic warning. The proficiency level each student is given is derived from a scaled score. It is calculated based on the number of correct answers provided (for all sections other than writing) factored by their level of difficulty. A "cut score" is used to determine when a student moves from one proficiency level to another.

For each individual school, test scores are important because they play a role in school accreditation reviews, and also help determine whether a school will earn a rating called "Standards of Excellence." For individual students, there are no guaranteed impacts of test scores. For example, KSA test scores are not used by themselves to determine whether a student could be held back in a grade. However, those who receive low scores may need additional instruction or may be required to attend a summer instruction program if a very low reading score is obtained.

In order to give children every opportunity to score well on the KSA, parents are encouraged to take the same steps that promote academic success in general, including things like ensuring children are doing their homework every night as well as reading to them on a daily basis. Encouraging them to do extra writing can also promote positive academic results in general and also on the KSA.

The reading assessment (given in grades 3 through 8 and once in high school) consists solely of multiple-choice questions. There are three different test sessions that last 45 minutes each (though students can take more time to complete them if needed). The number of questions ranges from 58 to 84 depending on the test taker's grade level.

The writing assessment is given in grades 5, 8, and 11. Students will be required to compose an essay that is scored by a rubric. This assessment is given in four different sessions lasting 45-60 minutes, though students can take more time if needed to complete the session. Students are assessed based on how well they convey and also use ideas and content, organization, voice, word choice, sentence fluency, and various language conventions.

The mathematics questions (given in grades 3 through 8 and again in high school) are all in a multiple-choice format, and include anywhere from 70 to 86 questions. A calculator is allowed to be used in two of the three testing sections. Depending on their grade level, students will be tested on numerical sense, algebra, geometry, probability, and statistics.

The science assessment is given in grades 4 and 7. There are a total of 44 to 60 questions given during two different sessions that are untimed, but usually take between 45 and 60 minutes for most students to complete. Topics covered include physical science, life science, earth and space science, and other subsections.

The history-government assessment is given in grades 6, 8, and again in high school. The test has 48-60 multiple-choice questions. Like the science assessment, the sessions are untimed over two different sessions. Students are assessed on their knowledge of civics, government, economics, geography, and history.


Last Updated: 03/01/2017

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