STAAR Practice Test Questions (Prep for the STAAR Tests)

What is the STAAR Test?

The STAAR or the State of Texas Assessment of Academic Readiness test is designed to measure the progress of 3rd to 8th-grade students. The STAAR helps parents and educators determine whether the student’s academic performance needs improvement or advanced enough to get him/her to the next grade level.

The STAAR test results also provide workable data that enables parents and teachers to enhance the student’s performance in the following fields or subjects: 1.) Math, 2.) Writing, 3.) Science, 4.) Reading/Language Arts, and 5.) Social Studies. Other than that, the STAAR examination is used to evaluate a school’s Adequate Yearly Progress (AYP) in accordance with the federal No Child Left Behind Act.

The STAAR test is taken by students who are in grades 3-8 and also in high school. The exam is based on the Texas Essential Knowledge and Skills (TEKS) learning standards. The TEKS standards fundamentally define what Texas students should learn in each grade level.

Please refer to the table below for the complete breakdown of the STAAR test with its corresponding subjects assigned for every grade level:

STAAR Test Administration
Grade Level Test Subjects
Grade 3 Reading, Mathematics
Grade 4 Reading, Mathematics, Writing
Grade 5 Reading, Mathematics, Science
Grade 6 Reading, Mathematics
Grade 7 Reading, Mathematics, Writing
Grade 8 Reading, Mathematics, Science, Social Studies

Important Reminder: The STAAR tests are available on paper and online. Aside from the aforementioned assessments, the STAAR also offers optional EOC (end-of-course) assessments for Algebra II and English III.

STAAR Test Scoring System

The STAAR test scores are determined by how well students mastered each grade-specific subjects. One of the most noteworthy things about the STAAR scoring system is the fact that a student’s performance on the test is not being compared to other test-takers. The STAAR tests determine the students’ proficiency in each of the following subjects through these three levels:

  • Did Not Meet the Standard
  • Met the Standard
  • Commended Performance

The primary goal of the STAAR test is to help students meet or exceed the Texas state learning standards. Meeting or exceeding the state standards play a huge role in every grade-level students. For instance, a third-grade student must pass the STAAR reading test in order to proceed to the fourth-grade. The same thing also applies to all other grade levels. For fifth and eighth-graders, passing both the STAAR reading and STAAR mathematics is a fundamental requirement in order to be promoted to the next level.

The STAAR scores are presented through the Confidential Student Report (CSR), which contains valuable details about a student’s potential performance on the STAAR.

STAAR Performance Standards

A student’s scale score may fall into the following categories:

STAAR Performance Standards
Level III: Advanced Academic Performance  Students who were able to reach this level showed an extraordinary degree of potential to qualify for the next course or grade. Having an Advanced Academic Performance means that students are likely to succeed without experiencing too many academic interventions. Obtaining such a level also implies that a student was able to demonstrate critical thinking and exhibited an exceptional application of assessed knowledge and academic skills.
Level II: Satisfactory Academic Performance  Students in this category show that they are adequately prepared for the next level. This degree of academic standard suggests that a student may need a short-term or targeted academic intervention. The performance of students who were able to reach this level demonstrated sufficient knowledge and academic skills to qualify for the next grade or course.
Level I: Unsatisfactory Academic Performance Students who fell under this category are deemed unprepared for the next grade. The evaluation suggests that they are unlikely to pass the next level without any intervention. Also, an Unsatisfactory Academic Performance also shows that the student was not able to demonstrate sufficient knowledge and academic skills that are needed to help him/her step up.

The scale score for the STAAR test indicates the performance level of all test-takers. There are two types of scaled scores that are being used on the STAAR test.

Horizontal Scale Score

The Horizontal Scare score is used to measure and evaluate a student’s performance level on the Writing subject for both grades 4 and 7, Science for grades 5 and 8, and Social Studies for grade 8 only. While the horizontal scale score is used to determine the performance level of students, it cannot be utilized to assess a student’s overall progress throughout the whole school year. 

Vertical Scale Score

The Vertical Scale score is used to evaluate the performance of grades 3-8 for the STAAR Reading and Mathematics subjects. The vertical scale score, however, can assess or evaluate a student’s overall progress across all grades  in a particular subject. 

The STAAR test is administered every springtime. The number of tests students’ take each year depends on what grade they’re in. Furthermore, most students will have 2 to 4 STAAR testing days during the 180-day school year. The examinations are being given at the students’ respective schools.

STAAR Test Format and Structure

Please refer to the following information below for the format and structure of the STAAR released test:

STAAR Test Format and Structure
Grade Level Format & Structure
Grade 3 Reading – 5 paragraphs with 550-700 words and 8 questions within the content.

Math – 34 multiple-choice questions and 3 open-ended questions.

Grade 4 Reading – 6 passages with 600-800 words and 44 follow-up questions in total.

Mathematics – 45 multiple-choice questions and 3 open-ended ones.

Writing – 3 passages with 300-550 words and 18 multiple-choice and 12 editing questions.

Grade 5 Reading – 6 passages with 600-800 words each and 46 questions in total.

Mathematics – 47 multiple-choice questions and 3 open-ended ones.

Science – 44 multiple-choice questions from a wide range of topics.

Grade 6 Reading – 6 passages with 600-850 words and 48 questions in total.

Mathematics – 48 multiple-choice questions and 4 open-ended ones.

Grade 7 Reading – 6 passages (fiction & non-fiction) with 500-900 words and 50 questions all in all.

Mathematics – May include fractions, measurements, specific number properties, and graph analysis.

Writing – 4 passages with 300-550 words and 17 multiple-choice questions.

Grade 8 Reading – 6 passages with 550-900 words and 52 questions in total.

Mathematics – 52 multiple-choice questions and 4 open-ended questions.

Science – 55 multiple-choice questions.

Social Studies – 52 multiple-choice questions.

STAAR Frequently Asked Questions

In what grades, subjects, and courses will students be assessed under the STAAR program?

Students will be assessed in Mathematics and Reading at grades 3–8. Grades 4 and 7 will be tested in Writing. Students from grades 5 and 8 will take the Science STAAR test. Social studies will be given at grade 8.

Can I retake the STAAR test?

First of all, you will be evaluated based on your STAAR test results. If grades 5 and 8 students fail the test, they are given 3 testing opportunities to pass the exam each year.

Is there a time limit on the STAAR test?

According to the latest update about the State of Texas Assessments of Academic Readiness, there is a 4 hour time limit on each of the assessments except for English I, II, and III which have a 5 hour time limit.

How is student performance described on STAAR?

As mentioned earlier, there are three performance categories that will determine a student’s overall performance on the STAAR test.

  • Did Not Meet the Standard
  • Met the Standard
  • Commended Performance

Do colleges look at STAAR test scores?

Colleges and universities know that a student’s standardized state test scores does not determine his/her academic success in college. That is why, many college institutions tend to look at class rank and GPAs for admission. 

What happens if you fail the STAAR test?

If the student fails three times, he/she may not be promoted to step into the next grade. Two additional chances are given to students who failed the Reading and/or Mathematics STAAR tests.

Is the STAAR test mandatory in Texas?

Standardized testing is mandated in Texas public schools by the State of Texas Assessments of Academic Readiness program in line with Education Code chapter 39 and 19 Texas Administrative Code chapter 101.

How do I get my STAAR test results 2019?

Step 1: Log on to https://www.texasassessment.com and click on “Log in to Student Portal.”

Step 2: Use the Uniques Access Code (UAC) to log into the portal and check your child’s STAAR scores. You will also gain access to additional resources that the website offers like the STAAR test dates.

Important Note: If you are not aware of your child’s state assigned UAC, you have the option to check it by clicking on the “Lookup Access Code.” It will ask you to verify your child’s information before you can access the UAC.

STAAR Test Prep Guide

Helping your child pass the STAAR test can be very challenging, especially if you have no idea how you can do it effectively. As a parent, you need to ensure that your child’s preparation for the test will not turn into a stressful experience. Some parents are too strict when it comes to helping their child study. Putting a lot of pressure will not contribute positively to your child’s overall performance.

To help you and your child prepare for the STAAR test and acquire the best possible STAAR results, we’ve outlined a few steps that you can take to assist your child in his/her preparation for the test:

#1 Use STAAR Practice Test Materials

There’s no better way to prepare for the STAAR exam than to do a test simulation using some STAAR practice tests questions that you can find online. As the saying goes, “practice makes perfect” thus engaging your child regularly with different practice test questions can benefit him/her greatly when he/she takes the test.

#2 Less Pressure, More Motivation

Many students get pressured about the STAAR test, especially about the possibility of failing the exam. Therefore, parents and teachers should avoid putting too much pressure on students. As a parent, you have to understand that your child’s performance on the test depends on the type of preparation he/she had gone through. If your child absorbed nothing but pressure during the preparation period, he/she may underperform during the test. Instead of pressuring your child to do great on the exam, try motivating him/her in a positive way to give way for effective learning.

#3 Get Enough Sleep

Some students today may spend more time with their gadgets than to get a goodnight sleep. If your child has an upcoming test, make sure that he/she gets enough time to rest. After your test preparation time has ended, avoid letting your child access his/her gadgets as this may affect his/her memory regarding the lessons that you have covered for the day. Even though children have a better memory than adults, distractions can easily make them lose focus and forget about what they have learned.

STAAR Practice Test Questions

Practice Test Question #1

It is hereby declared to be the policy of the President that there shall be equality of treatment and opportunity for all persons in the armed services without regard to race, color, religion or national origin. This policy shall be put into effect as rapidly as possible, having due regard to the time required to effectuate any necessary changes without impairing efficiency or morale. —President Harry S. Truman, Executive Order 9981, July 26, 1948

Which of the following contributed to President Truman’s decision to issue this order?

  1. A lack of funding for veteran pensions
  2. Declining enlistment rates during peacetime
  3. Discrimination against minority service members
  4. A desire to repeal the draft

Practice Test Question #2

Which application of a new technology can be attributed to an invention of Thomas Edison?

  1. Refrigerated railroad cars allowed food to be transported long distances.
  2. Light bulbs made it efficient for factory workers to work at night.
  3. Diesel engines were used in the production of airplanes.
  4. Sonar technology was used to track submarines.

Practice Test Questions #3

In November 1942, the National War Labor Board (NWLB) adopted the policy of “equal pay for equal work,” which had not been standard practice in industry.

What was the most likely purpose of this National War Labor Board order?

  1. To prevent unions from discriminating against unskilled workers during the war
  2. To weaken the “Rosie the Riveter” image for women working on the home front
  3. To double the output of equipment needed to support U.S. troops overseas
  4. To ensure fair treatment for women in the workplace during the war
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