Stanford Achievement Test

Stanford Achievement Test (K-12)

Measures student achievement across the subjects of reading, mathematics, language, spelling, listening comprehension, science, and social science. Available for Minnesota homeschools only. This option may work for you if you prefer:

  • Most recent norms

  • Flexible administration options (no time limits and parent and guardian can proctor)

  • Simple reporting to quickly determine if your student’s performance is is above average, average, or below average using national stanines

Administration Requirements

  • Administer the Stanford Achievement Test Series according to instructions, with testing materials (e.g., pencils, erasers, scratch paper, calculator) that are permitted for that test

  • Administer test in an appropriate environment without visible educational materials

  • Tests will not be scored unless all materials (test booklet, answer sheet, directions for administration) have been returned. Return materials to MSTP 879 29th Avenue SE #103 Minneapolis, MN 55414

Stanford Proctoring Requirements

  • Make sure the physical conditions in the testing room are satisfactory

  • Calculators and rulers with inch and centimeter markings should be available for the Mathematics Problem olving subtest only

  • Scratch paper should be available for the mathematics and listening subtests

  • No 2 pencils with erasers and extra pencils should be on hand

Order the Stanford Assessment

If ordering by credit card, you will be redirected to a secure University payment portal. If ordering by check you will need to fill out a PDF order form. For group or district homeschool orders, please contact MSTP.


What the Stanford Measures

Click each subject below for more information about the grades and how the subject is measured.


The Reading subtests measure a broad spectrum of essential reading components and are aligned with IRA/NCTE standards, state standards, and the National Assessment of Education Progress (NAEP). Reflecting a balanced, developmental curriculum and sound instructional practices, these subtests assess the following areas at appropriate grade levels: phonemic awareness, decoding, phonics, vocabulary, and comprehension.


The Mathematics subtests align with the NAEP and measure concepts and processes based on the National Council of Teachers of Mathematics Principles and Standards for School Mathematics (PSSM) and state standards. Concepts assessed include number sense and operations; patterns, relationships, and algebra; geometry and measurement; and data, statistics, and probability.

Questions also evaluate processes in computation and representation; estimation; mathematical connections; and reasoning and problem solving. To enhance test interpretation, the subtests provide consistency in names of content clusters across levels. Mathematics Problem Solving measures the skills and knowledge necessary to solve problems in mathematics. Mathematics Procedures measures the ability to apply the rules and methods of arithmetic to problems that require arithmetic solutions. Both standard and metric rulers are used in the Mathematics Problem Solving and Mathematics subtests for the Primary 1–TASK levels. A mathematics reference sheet that provides the formulas necessary to solve problems is included for the Advanced and TASK levels. Calculator use is an option in the Mathematics Problem Solving subtest beginning at the Intermediate 1 level and in the Mathematics subtest at the TASK levels.


The Science subtest assesses students' understanding of the life, physical, and earth sciences, and the nature of science with questions that elicit problem solving and inquiry using a basic understanding of science. Reflecting current science practice and research, this subtest aligns with the National Science Education Standards (National Research Council), the Benchmarks for Science Literacy (American Association for the Advancement of Science), and state standards.

Social Science

The Social Science subtest measures the concepts important for the development of citizenship and strongly emphasizes critical thinking skills. Giving equal attention to history, geography, political science, and economics, the subtest maintains a balance between national and international issues. It reflects current social studies standards, practices, and research and is aligned with the National Council for the Social Studies (NCSS) Curriculum Standards for Social Studies and state standards.

Using the National Standards for History as a guideline, the history questions focus on the history of the United States, Western civilization, and non-Western people and societies who share our interdependent world. Geography questions, which are based on the Geography for Life: National Geography Standards, cover the themes of location, places, human-environment interaction, movement, and region.

The political science component helps assess students' basic understanding of the U.S. system of government as outlined in the National Standards for Civics and Government. The economics questions are based on the Voluntary National Content Standards in Economics.


Aligned with IRA/NCTE standards and state standards, the Stanford 10 Language subtest measures students' achievement in applying the principles that form effective writing. From word- and sentence-level skills to whole composition features, the subtest engages students in real-life activities. Stanford 10 offers a choice of Language subtests to suit different language arts instructional approaches.

The Traditional Language subtest (Form A) measures proficiency in mechanics and expression in three different sections. The first section measures language mechanics—capitalization, punctuation, and usage—with questions that resemble an actual editing task. Language expression is tested in the second section as students demonstrate their understanding of sentence structure. Language expression items in the third section include objectives typically assessed in the direct assessment of writing.


The separate Spelling subtest assesses objectives based upon the phonetic and structural principles taught at each grade level. Beginning at Primary 2, the spelling items reflect real-life editing tasks because they are presented in context rather than as isolated words. Each spelling item consists of one sentence with three underlined words and, starting at Primary 3, a "No Mistake" option. Misspellings used reflect students' most common spelling errors.

Listening Comprehension

Stanford 10 helps assess both listening vocabulary and comprehension at K–Grade 9 levels in recognition of the importance of listening skills in literacy development, instruction, and everyday life. The Listening subtests emphasize listening strategies and provide a wide variety of selections that includes multicultural representation.

In the Listening Vocabulary section, students demonstrate recognition of the common meanings of spoken words encountered in various types of activities. The Listening Comprehension section uses dictated selections and questions that reflect the listening materials students hear in school and outside of the classroom. This section parallels the Reading Comprehension subtest, using literary, informational, and functional texts to measure the same modes of comprehension: initial understanding, interpretation, and critical analysis and strategies.