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Exit Exams: Level Assessed

States vary in the grade-level content tested on exit exams. While a few states administer "minimum competency" exit exams covering content usually taught in grades 7-8, most state exit exams test high school-level content. A growing number of exit exams are end-of-course assessments, testing at the end of the school year material presumably taught during the academic year in which the end-of-course test is administered. When available, this database includes the level assessed for the state's entire exit exam, but in some cases only includes the level assessed for certain subjects.

Why does it matter? By aligning the exit exams to specific course content and grade levels, states can be assured that students are learning content at the levels necessary to succeed, and employers can be assured that students have the skills necessary to meet the high expectations of the 21st century workforce.

Highlights:

  • According to reports published by Achieve, Inc. and the Center on Education Policy (CEP), the grade levels that are tested in exit exams range from the 6th grade to the 11th grade.
  • Methodology: This information was collected from state statutes, rules and regulations, and state education agency Web sites, and will be updated as new policies and programs are enacted.

    Sources for all data points are accessible through this link.

    Last updated: June 26, 2007

    Research conducted by Michael Colasanti. Please contact Jennifer Dounay Zinth at 303.299.3689 or jdounay@ecs.org with comments or questions about this database.

    Level assessed (if available)
    Alabama Entire test: 11th grade (CEP)
    Alaska Entire test: 8th-10th grade (CEP)
    American Samoa
    Arizona Entire test: 10th grade (CEP)
    Arkansas End-of-course
    California English language arts: 10th grade (CEP)
    Mathematics: 6th-7th grade (CEP)
    Colorado
    Connecticut
    Delaware
    District of Columbia
    Florida Mathematics: 7th-8th grade (Achieve, Inc.)
    Entire test: 10th grade (CEP)
    Georgia Entire test: 11th grade (CEP)
    Hawaii
    Idaho Entire test: 10th grade (CEP)
    Illinois
    Indiana Entire test: 9th grade (CEP)
    Iowa
    Kansas
    Kentucky
    Louisiana Not available
    Maine
    Maryland End-of-course; however, Achieve, Inc. determined that the mathematics portion is aligned to 8th-9th grade.
    Massachusetts Mathematics: 8th grade (Achieve, Inc.)
    Entire test: 10th grade (CEP)
    Michigan
    Minnesota Reading- 10th grade (CEP)
    Writing- 9th grade (CEP)
    Mathematics- 11th grade (CEP)
    Mississippi End-of-course
    Missouri
    Montana
    Nebraska
    Nevada Not available
    New Hampshire
    New Jersey Mathematics- 7th-8th grade (Achieve, Inc.)
    Entire test- 11th grade (CEP)
    New Mexico Entire test- 8th grade (CEP)
    New York End-of-course
    North Carolina Entire test- 8th grade (CEP); North Carolina also uses end-of-course exams
    North Dakota
    Ohio Mathematics- 7th-8th grade (Achieve, Inc.)
    Entire test- 10th grade (CEP)
    Oklahoma End-of-course
    Oregon
    Pennsylvania
    Puerto Rico
    Rhode Island
    South Carolina End-of-course
    South Dakota
    Tennessee End-of-course
    Texas Mathematics: 8th-9th grade (Achieve, Inc.)
    Utah
    Vermont
    Virgin Islands
    Virginia End-of-course
    Washington Entire test- 10th grade (CEP)
    West Virginia
    Wisconsin
    Wyoming


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