California Testing Overview
The California Assessment of Student Performance and Progress administration includes the Smarter Balanced Summative Assessments; the California Alternate Assessments (CAAs), including the CAA for Science; the California Science Test (CAST); and the California Spanish Assessment (CSA).
Smarter Balanced Summative Assessments
Students in grades three through eight and grade eleven will take the Smarter Balanced Summative Assessments for English language arts/literacy (ELA) and mathematics. These assessments are administered online. A student may be exempted from taking the Smarter Balanced assessments in the following three situations:
- The student is taking the CAAs.
- The student has been designated as an English learner and is within his or her first 12 months of enrollment in a U.S. school as of April 15 of the previous year. (This exemption applies only to the ELA portion of the Smarter Balanced Summative Assessment.)
- The parent has expressed in writing that his or her student should be excluded from taking the summative assessments.
California Alternate Assessments
The CAAs for ELA and mathematics in grades three through eight and grade eleven are individually administered to students who have an individualized education program that indicates the use of an alternate assessment on statewide assessments. All eligible students are required to participate in these online assessments.
The CAA for Science can be administered to eligible students in grades five and eight and once to each eligible student while that student is in high school. All students must take the science assessment by the end of grade twelve, but have the option of testing in grade ten or grade eleven. Only eligible students may participate in the administration of the CAAs.
California Science Test
The CAST can be administered to all students in grades five and eight and once in high school. All students must take the science assessment by the end of grade twelve, but have the option of testing in grade ten or grade eleven. Students assigned to take an alternate assessment should take the CAA for Science.
California Spanish Assessment
The CSA is intended for Spanish-speaking students in grades three through eight and high school to measure competency in Spanish language arts to provide student-level data in Spanish competency. These are optional tests that can be administered online.
Last Reviewed: February 16, 2022