Q. How long is the assessment test?
A. 1.5 hours but students can leave earlier if they finish earlier, as long as their parents are there to pick them up.
Q. Do all students write the same test?
A. We separate the tests into grade 5-7, and grade 8 -12 level. Each age group has a regular test and an optional test that they can write if they have time. The regular test is written answer and the optional test is multiple choice. Within each test multiple topics are covered.
Q. Should the students attempt to solve all problems on the test or focus on problems within certain part(s)?
A. Attempt all problems but don't waste time on questions that they think are beyond their knowledge. It's OK to leave questions blank.
Q. Do students have to show the work on the test sheet, and are the points taken away if the work is not shown?
A. Showing work is best especially for the word problems. No marks are deducted if work is not shown, but partial marks may be given for an incorrect answer if work is shown and proves that the student has partial knowledge of the problem. On the optional (multiple choice test) students receive 2 points for a correct answer and lose a point for an incorrect answer (so leaving a question blank is better than guessing!).
Q. Do you return the test to students or disclose their mark?
A. No. The purpose of the test is only to group students together who are at a similar mathematical level so that they can learn at the same pace. We only tell the student what class they placed in and we recycle the tests once they have been marked.
Q. Can the students ask questions during the test if they find a problem specification unclear?
A. They can ask, but the teacher probably won't explain any of the mathematical terms or give clues about the problem. If it is a language barrier then the teacher is more likely to assist, but we want to refrain from distracting the rest of the students and from giving the student too much assistance during the test. There is no harm in asking, but be prepared that the answer might be "sorry I can't help you", depending on what the question is.