The Collegiate Assessment of Academic Proficiency test, also known as the CAAP exam, is a set of tests that measures a high school student’s ability in several different areas. Several high schools use the CAAP set of standardized tests to measure their student body’s skills in various areas so that the effectiveness of the education can be assessed each and every semester. Not only does the school use this to measure the quality of the curriculum and instruction, it can also be used to determine how students can improve while they are still in high school studying to work towards college admission.

If you are like a majority of students who are planning to attend college, your performance on these tests is important. You need to learn not only what academic areas you are being evaluated on, but also how the skill levels are determined and used. Read this guide to the CAAP, and familiarize yourself with one of the many standardized tests you might take in high school.

What Are You Tested on?

There are a total of 6 different CAAP tests that you may take. The 6 core areas you are tested on include: Reading, Writing Skills, Writing Essays, Critical Thinking, Science, and Math. In the reading section, you will be tested on comprehension and reasoning after reading text. In the Writing Skills section, your conventions of standard written English will be tested. When you write your essay, you must answer two prompts in essay form and take a position. When you get to the Critical Thinking section, you will analyze and evaluate different data and arguments. Mathematics sections test your quantitative reasoning abilities. The Science section will then cover your skills and knowledge of scientific information. The tests that you actually take as a student will depend on the college or university that you plan on attending.

What is the Purpose of the CAAP?

You might be wondering why you need to take yet another standardized test when you have taken the SAT, the ACT, or other admissions tests to prove that you are ready for college. There are many purposes of CAAP tests, and many of the benefits are for the college. Accredited colleges need to show that they are delivering quality instruction, and to do this the colleges may require students to take CAAP tests for reporting.

CAAP results also help measure achievements, compare the achievements of students from different demographics, evaluate strengths of students individually, improve instruction, document student gains, and determine whether or not a student can be enrolled in upper-level courses. Your scores may be used to determine what grade you have earned, but they are reliable for assessing and researching performance.

If you want to show that you are knowledgeable in a specific area of study through your CAAP scores, you need to prepare before the test is administered. The best way to prep for the test is to learn which sections of the test you will be taking. Once you do this, you will be able to reference the right study guides and tools to test yourself. Make sure you review the testing schedule and then review study guides and take practice tests to gauge where you are at on the proficiency scale before you sit for your CAAP exam.

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