How Do You Know What Students Are Ready to Learn?

We recommend above-level testing!

bell_curve Above-level testing is an educational procedure in which a test developed for older students is administered to younger students. The goal of a Talent Search (like the Belin-Blank Exceptional Student Talent Search) is to discover, via above-level testing, students who need further educational challenge to fully realize their academic talent.

Traditionally, parents sign their children up for national testing dates (Explore for 4th-6th graders, and ACT for 7th-9th graders).  We’ve also introduced a new option for schools to test 4th-6th graders at their own school: In-School Testing.  Pending renewal of funding, we will offer free testing through In-School Testing for Iowa 6th graders again for the 2014-2015 school year.  Only certified educators are eligible to sign up for In-School Testing.

Above-level testing is also a great way to identify students who might be ready to take AP coursework during their 9th or 10th grade year (as opposed to a typical start in 11th or 12th grade).  The Belin-Blank Center is offering a limited numbers of spots in the Iowa Online Advanced Placement Academy to high-ability Iowa students who score well on above-level tests through our In-School Testing program.  The Belin-Blank Center is also in the process of developing pre-AP options for younger Iowa students who score well on above-level tests through In-School Testing.  More information about these options will be available in the fall.  In the meantime, teachers who have questions or suggestions may email


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