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Benchmark Exams

Benchmark Testing for 2020-21

Our benchmark exams are used to determine placement in English, Math, and World Language courses for incoming freshmen (including students who transfer into the district) and for some new students in grades 10-12. Our divisions may use a slightly different evidence-based process to arrive at their placement recommendations, so please review the information below for division-specific benchmark details.

Families must be registered as district residents through our Student Services Division before testing can take place. (To verify residency, please contact the Student Services Division at 847-415-4500.)

World Languages

Placement in World Language courses is determined by student performance on a language-specific assessment that can be completed remotely. Students who have prior coursework or experience in Chinese, French, German, Hebrew, Spanish, or Latin, and are interested in potential placement in one of these language programs beyond the introductory level, may sign up for the corresponding language benchmark exam.

  • For Chinese, French, German, and Spanish, students will complete the listening, reading, and writing portions of the AAPPL exam.

  • Students interested in completing a placement exam for Hebrew will complete the listening, reading, and writing portions of the STAMP exam.

  • For Latin, students will complete the ALIRA assessment.

Please note that students enrolled in Spanish in most of our sender middle schools/junior highs will complete the Spanish benchmark exam in their middle schools/junior highs and will not need to complete the benchmark exam through SHS at this time.

Families must be registered as district residents through our Student Services Division before testing can take place. (To verify residency, please contact the Student Services Division at 847-415-4500.) 

Please click on this link to preregister for the benchmark exam. The pre-registration window will open on November 24. Codes for the exam will be sent within one week of preregistration, excluding winter break. Students should complete all elements of the benchmark exam by January 8. The exam this year will be administered remotely and proctored by a parent or guardian. Contact Sylvia Lima at slima@d125.org with any questions regarding benchmark testing for World Languages.

Science

Recommendations for our Science classes are based on MAP scores in Math and Reading, as well as a review of students’ performance in 8th grade. Our Science Division first reviews Math Map scores; based on strong math MAP some students given the recommendation/choice:

  • AC Chemistry or AC Biology 

For the other students, we review the MAP Reading score to give one of three options. We also consider the English recommendations and then:

  • Recommend AC Biology with a choice of AC Chemistry
  • Recommend AC Biology with a choice of CP Biology
  • Recommend CP Biology with a choice of AC Biology
  • Place in CP Biology

Math

For students transferring into Stevenson from outside Consortium 125 schools, the mathematics course placement will be determined based on a complete transcript from the previous school and curriculum review of the student’s previous course. A full topic-by-topic syllabus of the previous course is requested. 

Families must be registered as district residents through our Student Services Division before a transcript and course curriculum review is initiated. (To verify residency, please contact the Student Services Division at 847-415-4500.) Contact Valerie Tomkiel at vtomkiel@d125.org for details around the transcript/curriculum review. 

A benchmark/placement exam will only be administered when additional data about a student’s mathematical proficiency is needed.

Communication Arts

Our Communication Arts Division uses the Fall or Winter MAP reading score to make a Recommendation for placement.

Students who are able to provide a standardized reading and/or English test score (from the MAP, AIMS or Iowa tests, for example) do not need additional assessment. Contact Doug Lillydahl at dlillydahl@d125.org to submit such scores at any time.

For students who cannot provide a standardized reading and/or English test score, recommendations/placement in Freshman English and literacy courses is determined by a reading assessment of the student’s ability to comprehend and analyze text. Students should expect to read texts, answer questions in argumentative paragraphs, and answer online multiple-choice questions. This test is also open to students who wish to reassess and change their initial Academic Literacy placement. In order to arrange for this SHS testing, please contact Denise Perkins at dperkins@d125.org.

Families must be registered as district residents through our Student Services Division before testing can take place. (To verify residency, please contact the Student Services Division at 847-415-4500.)