Use our free HSPT practice tests (updated in 2020) to prepare for your upcoming exam. Many parochial and other private high schools use the High School Placement Test (HSPT) in order to evaluate potential candidates for admission. The test measures students’ skills and abilities in five categories: language, reading, verbal skills, mathematics, and quantitative skills.
Skills displayed on the HSPT can be a critical factor in a student’s application for admission into a private or parochial school. HSPT practice tests as well as other resources have been made available for those applicants who may be interested. Utilizing these and other resources can be vital for those seeking admission to many private or parochial schools.
HSPT Practice Tests and Recommended Study Resources
There are several free online resources for those looking to prepare for the HSPT. Many of these online resources can be found absolutely free online, such as:
Free HSPT Practice Tests and Sample Questions
- HSPT Verbal Skills Practice Tests
- HSPT Quantitative Skills Practice Tests
- HSPT Reading Comprehension Practice Tests
- HSPT Mathematics Practice Tests
- HSPT Language Skills Practice Tests
Free Study Guides, Flashcards, and Other Materials
- HSPT Study Guide
- HSPT Math Flashcards
- HSPT Vocabulary Flashcards
- HSPT Self Assessment Modules
- Additional HSPT Test Preparation
HSPT Content Description
The High School Placement Test consists of five sections of questions, evaluating the candidate’s abilities in several different areas. The test is designed to measure “basic” as well as “cognitive” skills developed by the applicant.
“Basic” questions can be found in the Reading, Mathematics, and Language sections, utilizing more simple and direct questions. “Cognitive” questions can be found in the Verbal and Quantitative section, and will ask questions in which the answers are not obvious. The key is to be able to demonstrate application of the skills and knowledge the student has acquired thus far.
Be sure to take HSPT practice tests for every section in order to be prepared for all sections.
The High School Placement Test consists of five sections:
Verbal Skills Section
The Verbal Skills section of the HSPT is one of the “cognitive” sections of the test. It tests a candidate’s ability to use and apply the linguistic skills they have acquired to this point.
Students are given 16 minutes to complete 60 multiple choice questions in the following categories:
- Sentence Logic
- Verbal Classification
Quantitative Skills Section
The Quantitative Skills section of the HSPT is the second “cognitive” section of the HSPT. It tests a candidate’s ability to use and apply the quantitative skills they have acquired to this point, through the use of word problems.
Students are given 30 minutes to complete 52 multiple choice questions in the following categories:
- Number Series
- Geometric Comparisons
- Non-Geometric Comparisons
- Number Manipulation
Reading Comprehension Section
The Reading Comprehension section of the HSPT is a “basic” section of the HSPT. It tests a candidate’s ability to recall and display the reading comprehension skills they have acquired to this point.
Students are given 25 minutes to complete 62 multiple choice questions in the following categories:
- Main Idea
The Mathematics section of the HSPT is a “basic” section of the HSPT. It tests a candidate’s ability to recall and display the mathematics skills they have acquired to this point.
Students are given 45 minutes to complete 64 multiple choice questions in the following categories:
- Basic math including fractions, decimals, percentage, estimation, and word problems
- Basic Algebra including solving 1-variable equations
- Basic Geometry including Pythagorean geometry, lines, angles, area, perimeter, and volume
Language Skills Section
The Language Skills section of the HSPT is a “basic” section of the HSPT. It tests a candidate’s ability to recall and display the language skills they have acquired to this point.
Students are given 25 minutes to complete 60 multiple choice questions in the following categories:
The High School Placement Test is administered at the parochial or private school to which the candidate has applied. This is typically done on a specific Saturday in January, as well as one secondary date, determined on a yearly basis.
Applicants should contact the school they wish to attend in order to find out when and where the test will be offered. Schools will typically provide admission tickets, registration forms, and an official handbook for instructions. Registration fees may vary by school.
The High School Placement Test is administered twice per year. Seats in high-schools are often limited, so taking the test as early as possible is recommended. Applicants should contact their school authorities as soon as possible regarding test registration requirements. Some schools may require candidates to require for the earlier test, whereas others may have no such requirement.
Early registration will also help to ensure seating at your testing school, and provide more time to prepare with your HSPT practice tests.
HSPT Test Fees
Students do not pay a separate fee for the High School Placement Test, as any costs associated with the test are included in the application fee for the school being applied for. Applicants should check with their school if they have questions about HSPT testing fees.
The High School Placement Test is available for any eighth grade student wishing to enroll in a private or parochial school in ninth grade. Students may only take the HSPT once. If the test is taken again, the lowest score will be the one which is counted.
Receiving Your HSPT Scores
High School Placement Test scores are released at the discretion of the school that is being applied to. Applicants should check with their school if they have questions on when they will receive their score report.
The following guidelines are used when scoring the High School Placement Test:
- Students are given 1 point for each correct answer
- Students are given zero points for unanswered questions
- There is no penalty for answering incorrectly (or guessing)
There is no “passing” score on the HSPT; scores are forwarded to the school for which the student is applying, and their administrators will use their own criteria to evaluate the results.
Your Scaled Scores
The applicant’s raw score on the HSPT is calculated and converted into a scaled score. This scaled score will fall between 200-800.
- A score of 600 is widely considered to be “above average”, falling around the 80th percentile
- Unlike many other tests, the HSPT may only be taken once by an applicant. If the applicant does take it more than once, then the lower of the two scores will be counted.
HSPT Percentile Rank
The HSPT score report will also show the percentile rank as calculated from the raw score. Percentile rank indicates where the applicant stands in relation to other applicants of similar demographics, in order to allow schools to compare candidates easily.
There is no passing score on the HSPT. Each school will determine what an acceptable score is for its candidates.
Other Information Appearing on the HSPT Score Report
Besides scaled scores and percentile rankings, the following information is broken down even further, and will also appear on the HSPT Score Report:
- Total Cognitive Skills - Verbal and Quantitative Skills sections are totaled up and a national percentile is provided
- Total Basic Skills - Reading, Math, and Language Skills sections are totaled up and a national percentile is provided
- Battery Composite - Verbal, Quantitative, Reading, Math, and Language Skills sections are totaled up and a national percentile is provided
- Optional Test - percentiles are provided for any optional tests given by the testing school, including Science, Mechanical Aptitude, or Religion.
- Cognitive Skills Quotient - This provides a measure of the applicant’s learning potential, similar to the IQ score. This score is dependent on the age of the candidate when he or she took the HSPT. This is usually given as a range between 55-145, with 100 being the average CSQ.
- Grade Equivalents - This score refers to the grade and month the student has tested into. For example, a score of 8.3 would indicate in 8th grader in their third month. GE scores are provided for Reading, Language Skills, and Mathematics.
To register for your HSPT and begin on your HSPT practice tests, please contact the school to which you are applying.
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How many questions are in the HSPT?
Last Updated: 01/08/2020