IOWA / STAR Testing



Beginning in the fall of 2011, St. Anthony students began taking the Iowa Assessments®, formerly known by their acronyms as the “ITBS” or “ITEDS.” With the new name, came a new set of tests, with new questions, reorganized sections and more.

Students are tested in the following general areas: reading, writing expression, math, computation, science, social studies, and vocabulary. Students in grades 3-8 are also tested in spelling, capitalization and punctuation. The reading, written expression, vocabulary, spelling, capitalization, punctuation, mathematics, and computation tests are aligned to the Common Core State Standards.

Check the Scores

  • On your child’s “Profile Narrative” report, you will find your child’s scores.
  • Look at the “Profile Narrative.”
  • Under the Profile Narrative, you will find a “Notes” box.
  • This will let you know the ranges of proficiency in the areas of reading, mathematics and science.

Traditionally we have focused our attention on the National Percentile Ranking (NPR) score. With the Iowa Assessments, we will begin to focus on the National Standard Score (NSS). This is because the National Standard Score gives us a clearer picture of your child’s growth instead of a comparison to other children.

Know What the Scores Mean

Your child’s test results are presented in different ways:

  • National Standard Score: This score describes your student’s performance on an achievement continuum from elementary to high school. The continuum gives you a range of “typical” achievement and you can determine how your child has done based on that range.
  • National Percentile Ranking: This ranking indicates a comparison of your student’s score with others in the nation who are in the same grade and took the test at the same time of year. An NPR of 80 means your child scored as well or better than 80 percent of the students who took the test.

Don’t Compare

  • The Iowa Assessments that your child has taken is a different test than the ITBS or ITED that your child has taken before. The questions were completely new and rewritten.
  • These tests were piloted on students across the state and the comparison groups are different from the ones 10 years ago for the ITBS/ITEDS. In other words, the fourth graders who took the tests this year are different than the fourth graders who took the test 10 years ago.
  • Because of this, it is not advisable to compare scores from the ITBS/ITED to Iowa Assessments.

Seek Assistance for Additional Questions

Your child’s principal is available to help you if you have further questions about your individual child’s performance.

Learn More about Iowa Assessments

For more about the Iowa Assessments, please visit the Iowa Testing Programs at the University Of Iowa College Of Education. This link includes:

Learn How the Iowa Assessments Can Be Helpful

Beyond determining simple proficiency levels, the results from the Iowa Assessments can be helpful in many ways to many people. The test provides parents, students, and educators with information on what students know and can do in key academic areas. As students progress through school, their yearly growth in these key areas can be observed and their college-readiness monitored. In addition, group results can be used as part of a comprehensive program evaluation. These are just a few of the ways that the results can provide helpful information.