Connecticut Academic Performance Test (CAPT

The Connecticut Academic Performance Test, or CAPT for short, is a test taken by all public high school sophomores in the state of Connecticut. Read on to learn more about the exam and the types of questions it asks.

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The Connecticut Academic Performance Test is an achievement test administered by the Connecticut State Board of Education to public school students in grade 10. It is intended to gather information necessary to the ongoing improvement of public education in Connecticut. The test is designed to:

  • Establish performance standards for all high school sophomores on a range of skills and knowledge
  • Emphasize the application of knowledge and skills in realistic contexts
  • Promote better instruction and curricula by providing feedback on strengths and weaknesses of students and of school districts
  • Increase the accountability for high school level education

The CAPT is administered in the spring to all public high school sophomores. If a student does not achieve satisfactory results, additional opportunities are available in grades 11 and 12. The results of the test show how well students are performing compared to expectations set for all grade 10 students in Connecticut public schools. The test areas include Writing, Reading, Math and Science.

Writing

Interdisciplinary Writing

Includes two tests in which students must read three articles that represent different perspectives on a controversial issue and use the information to write a persuasive letter.

Editing and Revising

Tests a student's proficiency with composing, revising and editing. This section requires the student to read writing samples and to answer multiple choice questions in order to correct common errors in areas like syntax, organization, punctuation, etc.

Reading

Response to Literature

Students read a short story, then respond to two essay questions. This test measures how well the student understands the story; his ability to interpret the meaning of the story; his ability to make connections to the story; and his ability to evaluate how the author wrote the story.

Reading for Information

Students read three short non-fiction articles and answer short-answer and multiple choice questions. This test measures how well the student interprets the article and how they evaluate how the author wrote the article.

Science

Tests a student's understanding of concepts and their ability to apply them to realistic problems in the areas of the Life, Physical, and Earth Sciences. This section has a major focus on experimentation skills and problem solving through scientific reasoning. It contains a combination of multiple-choice and short-answer questions and may require graphing and diagramming.

Results

The CAPT results are reported to the students and their families and are noted on the student's high school records and transcripts. These results help students, parents and teachers identify strengths and weaknesses; they also help in planning instruction and developing support for students and teachers. Students who meet the standards set for the areas of concentration receive a Certificate of Mastery.

The CAPT could be considered a 'high stakes' test. That means that while it is not the measure for whether a student will be allowed to graduate high school, the score is considered in making that decision. It's especially important for a Connecticut public school student to do well on the CAPT. Being prepared is crucial and parental involvement is indispensable.

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