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An introduction to the Mississippi Curriculum Test, Second Edition

THURSDAY, JANUARY 28, 2016 16:10 PM

Mississippi students in grades 3 through 8 take the Second Edition of the Mississippi Curriculum Test. This exam has two parts and helps students, teachers and parents gain insight into learning progress. Read on to learn why your children take these tests and how to help them prepare:

The purpose of standardized testing
The MCT2 allows school administrators to compare students, grades and individual schools with others in the district and state. Ensuring students are ready to advance to the next grade and eventually postsecondary education is the main goal of testing students in the two subject areas: language arts and mathematics. Students who perform well on the multiple-choice MCT2 have mastered the necessary topics to move to a higher grade. Those who earn lower scores may require extra assistance to fully grasp all the concepts and information they should learn at the grade they are already in.

Teaching for the MCT2 
The Mississippi Department of Education noted that teachers follow test blueprints. These important documents offer examples of the type of questions that will be on the MCT2, as well as some information on what topics are covered. Educators then shape their curricula and lesson plans around teaching kids what students need to know to succeed on the exams. Teachers also follow the Mississippi Language Arts and Mathematics Framework to create the MCT2. 

The importance of practice tests
Many students simply show up on the day of MCT2 testing and get to work. While this is necessary, you can really help your children better prepare by encouraging them to do practice tests. These online opportunities provide a chance for students to view questions that are similar to what they will answer on the real test. Pre-exams can also help kids identify what subjects and topics they need to work on before the actual MCT2 exams. You can get a feel for what scores your children will earn on the standardized testing by looking at their regular grades. Although the MCT2 does not affect individual letter grades, the two are linked. Low scores in math class are probably going to carry over into less-than-satisfactory levels on the MCT2. Keep an eye on your children's grades and help them in areas where they struggle.