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SCAT – School and College Ability Test is a standardized test conducted by the Johns Hopkins Center for Talented Youth (CTY) for school-going students in the US. It is used to identify gifted minds for CTY’s gifted programs and is open for students from grades 2-12.

SCAT is an above grade level test that measures a child’s abilities by testing verbal and quantitative abilities. Students who score well, get a chance to study advanced curriculums and be in the company of like-minded students at the CTY.

Why Should a Student Take the SCAT?

SCAT test is a measure of a child’s giftedness. CTY’s main purpose behind conducting SCAT is to measure a child’s abilities and enroll them into CTY courses accordingly. However, this test is also commonly used to gauge a child’s abilities at the school level. It is often used by schools and parents to analyze a child’s abilities and to provide them the appropriate exposure.

The CTY has a set of qualifying scores for its several programs. If a student scores equivalent to or above the set score, he/she is enrolled in their preferred program along with other gifted children of the same age. At CTY, gifted students get a chance to study subjects/topics that are at par with their abilities. They also get to learn from some of the brightest minds in the country while keeping the company of like-minded peers.

So, if you take a broader perspective, the reason to take the SCAT test is to gauge the abilities of a child. From there, the results can be used to either pursue a course at the CTY or to take up challenging subjects in school and even outside of it.

SCAT Scores

While talking about SCAT, you will come across three types of scores. They are:

  1. Raw Score

The raw score is the count of questions correctly answered by a child. If a child answers 25 answers correctly out of 50 questions, the raw score, in this case, is 25/50.

  1. Scaled Score

To compare one student’s score with other students within the grade level, the CTY converts the raw score into a scaled score. This score ranges from 400-514 and is finally converted into the SCAT percentile and shared with the student.

  1. SCAT Percentile

The SCAT percentile is the last step of the scoring process. It is used to compare a students’ academic abilities with students in higher grades. As already discussed, SCAT is an above-grade-level test therefore comparing a student with older students is a crucial part of the process.

A grade 2 student takes the SCAT test designed with the curriculum of grade 4. Similarly, a student of grade 3 attempts the test based on the grade 5 curriculum and so on. Here’s a detailed table explaining the grade scoring system.

Current Grade

SCAT Test Level

2nd Grade

4th Grade

3rd Grade

5th Grade

4th Grade

6th Grade

5th Grade

8th Grade

6th Grade

9th Grade

7th Grade

12th Grade

8th Grade

12th Grade

Qualifying Scores

Every grade has a qualifying score for both the Verbal and Quantitative Sections. By qualifying we mean, your child needs these scores to get into the prestigious programs offered by CTY. Anything below these numbers does not work.

Grade

Verbal

Quantitative

2

430

435

3

435

440

4

440

450

5

445

465

6

450

470

7

455

475

8

460

480

9

465

485

10

470

490

Opportunities Attached to Particular Scores

All the opportunities associated with SCAT scores are defined according to the SCAT percentile. Here are some probable opportunities that may come with a particular percentile (applicable for all grades).

50th Percentile

Students who receive a percentile score between 50-75 might be considered for gifted programs within their school. They may also be considered for Talented programs in other schools and institutions outside of their own. Some schools may also help students in this score segment with enrichment material beyond their class resources.

75th Percentile

75th percentile and above call for special instructions at school. Students who get this score qualify to work with a mentor or tutor and receive all the benefits listed above. They are considered gifted and qualify for instructions adjusted to their level. This means, students in the 75th percentile, do not have to adjust with their current grade curriculum, they can look ahead and learn according to their capabilities rather than their age or grade.

90th Percentile

A student reaches the 90th percentile and above with top scores in both verbal and quantitative sections. 90th percentile students get access to all the benefits that SCAT brings with it at the school level and CTY level. They are permitted to work with older students and to start higher-level courses earlier than their peers. Furthermore, CTY coordinates with schools to enable such students to pursue its specific courses.

Conclusion

Scoring well in SCAT needs hard work, consistency, and planning. If you think that a gifted child can ace it without any preparation, you are mistaken. SCAT is a timed test with a particular format. Even the most gifted of minds may feel overwhelmed without practice. SCAT prep requires a thorough study of the curriculum along with an understanding of the exam format and time management.

As a parent, you can help your child by creating a proper practice schedule while providing the right tools for the preparation. If you are not sure how to balance the SCAT curriculum with the school curriculum, you can consider enrolling your child with eTutorWorld. We offer SCAT test prep for all grades through highly experienced tutors and a well-designed, personalized lesson plan.

Visit our website today to take a free trial and understand how we can help you empower your gifted child through SCAT.

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