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About the Massachusetts Comprehensive Assessment System (MCAS)

What is the Massachusetts Comprehensive Assessment System (MCAS)?

The Massachusetts Comprehensive Assessment System is the newly redesigned "next gen" version of the MCAS testing. This summative assessment is designed to provide information about what students know in core academic areas. Subjects tested include Mathematics, English Language Arts (ELA), and Science and Technology.

Practice Tests for the Massachusetts Comprehensive Assessment System (MCAS)

Our curriculum is focused around actual material that a student is likely to see on the upcoming Massachusetts Comprehensive Assessment System (MCAS) test. Nationally known for delivering high quality and affordable materials that help students improve their scores, we provide you both paper-based instruction and easy to use online test preparation.

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More About the Massachusetts Comprehensive Assessment System (MCAS) Tests

State Testing Information for Massachusetts

Portions of the following material were taken from the Massachusetts Department of Education website. Please see our links and source sections at the bottom of the page for more details and references.

General Description of the Tests

Massachusetts Comprehensive Assessment System (MCAS)

  • Grades: 3-8, 10
  • Subjects: English Language Arts, Mathematics, Science and Technology/Engineering, History, Social Science
  • All students educated with public funds are required to participate in the MCAS tests administered in their grades.

MCAS Alternate Assessment (MCAS-Alt)

  • Students with the most significant disabilities who are unable to take the standard MCAS tests even with accommodations participate in the MCAS Alternate Assessment (MCAS-Alt).

National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP)

  • Grades: 4, 8, 12
  • Subjects: Reading, Mathematics, Science, Writing, U.S. History, Civics, Geography, Arts
  • The only nationally representative and continuing assessment of what America's students know and can do in various subjects

Computer-Based Testing Expectation

In 2019, the grades 3-8 MCAS tests in ELA, Mathematics, and STE, and the grade 10 tests in ELA and Mathematics will be expected to be administered online, with certain exceptions for students with disabilities and first-year English learners, who may require a paper-based edition as an accommodation. High schools will also be expected to administer computer-based field tests in Biology and Introductory Physics to a portion of their students (note that the operational high school STE tests will remain paper-based in 2019; details will be provided at a later date).

Guidance on Next-Generation Testing for High Schools

The first administration of the new, next-generation MCAS ELA and Mathematics tests for grade 10 will be in spring 2019. To assist schools in preparing for the new expectations, the Department has begun releasing resources, including the spring 2019 grade 10 ELA Download Word Document and Mathematics test designs. In fall 2018, the Department will release next-generation practice tests and sample student work, and will host a series of regional face-to-face and remote workshops to share information about the high school testing program.

Grade 10 Concurrent Testing Policy and Test Security

In order to achieve a higher level of test security, high schools will be expected to administer the grade 10 tests on the primary administration dates concurrently whenever possible. Schools with technology constraints should use the primary administration dates for the maximum number of students who can test concurrently, and then use the secondary administration dates for the remainder of the students. Schools with special circumstances that cannot test all their students using the primary and secondary administration dates should email the Department's Office of Student Assessment Services to discuss options. (Note that schools with students doing paper-based tests as an accommodation will be expected to administer the grade 10 tests concurrently to those students on the primary set of administration dates.)


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