IAAT Math Test: Preparing for the Iowa Algebra Aptitude Test

Did your child come home from school saying that he or she has to take the IAAT test? Were you clueless as to what this test is? Continue reading below to find out what the IAAT test is, what your child can expect on the test and how he or she can prepare.

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What Should I Know About the IAAT Test?

The IAAT (Iowa Algebra Aptitude Test) is a placement test that is given to students just before they enter high school. This aptitude test contains 60 questions that are equally divided into four subtests. Students will have a total of 40 minutes to complete the entire test; however, only 10 minutes are allowed per subtest. The questions on this test are multiple choice and may require your child to use information that is presented in a diagram, a picture or a graph.

Students will receive 5 scores that show how they performed on the IAAT: one score for each subtest and a composite score. The score report also provides a student's raw scores, standard scores, his or her local percentile rank and national percentile rank. Although the scores your child receives on the IAAT test will not determine a pass or fail status, how he or she performs is still very important. Your child's score report will be used to help teachers and administrators place him or her in an appropriate secondary math course.

How Can My Child Prepare for the IAAT Test?

To prepare for the IAAT test, you will want to make sure that your child can adequately perform skills and operations from each of the subtest areas. It's a good idea to have your student complete practice problems or worksheets to ensure he or she is comfortable with each mathematical area. Of course, if your child seems to learn better in an interactive format, then allow him or her to practice using math games. The first subtest checks your child's knowledge of pre-algebra skills. Questions in this subtest will require students to perform computations and solve word problems to show how well they understand a range of pre-algebra concepts.

The second subtest is focused on how students interpret mathematical information. This portion will test how well your child can use information that is presented in graphs or text to answer questions. To score well on this subtest, it's particularly important that your child has an adequate knowledge of math vocabulary.

The third tested area checks your student's knowledge of how to represent a math relationship. Students will be presented information in verbal form or in the form of a table and must use that information to determine the rule that defines the numerical relationship. The final subtest allows your student to demonstrate his or her knowledge of mathematical symbols. Your child will need to know about important algebra symbols and how they are used.

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