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Benchmark Exams

Benchmark exams are used to determine placement in English, mathematics and world languages courses for some incoming freshmen (including transfer students), and for some new students in grades 10-12.

Eighth-grade students from Consortium 125 schools in District 76, District 79, District 96, District 102 and District 103 will not take a formal placement test in English, math or science. Rather, students will receive placements or recommendations in those subjects based on common assessments and teacher feedback. World language students at the consortium schools will complete a benchmark examination at their school.

Students at Hawthorn District 73 and St. Mary Catholic School only need to take the math benchmark test at Stevenson. They will complete the world language placement test at their schools and do not need to take an English placement exam. English placements will be based on standardized test results and eighth-grade teacher recommendations.

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.)

Benchmark Exam Dates for the 2020-21 School Year

  • Friday, July 10, 2020
  • Friday, July 24, 2020

NOTE: The April 25 exam date was canceled due to the coronavirus outbreak.

Benchmark Exam Day Schedule

7:30 a.m.    Student arrival
8:00    Check-in for registered students
8:30-10:00    World Languages
10:15 -11:15    Mathematics
11:30-12:30    English

Location: The benchmark exams will be given in the West Building. Check-in will be in the Forum (Point) lobby, which is located off parking lot B. Students should arrive 20 minutes before their first test begins to confirm registration. Students staying for the mathematics and English benchmarks may wish to bring a snack/beverage to eat or drink between the two tests.

What to Bring: Students should bring several, sharpened No. 2 pencils and the calculator that they use in their current mathematics class, plus a snack and water bottle.

Bus service will not be provided.

Mathematics Benchmark Information
Placement in mathematics is determined by student performance on a 60-minute multiple-choice subject area exam. Here are the topics covered on the exams. Contact Anna Kotvis at to register.

World Language Benchmark Information

All transfer students and sender school students interested in registering for a world language course, but who were absent during the placement exam administered in class earlier in the year at their sender school, will need to register for benchmark testing with the World Languages Division by contacting Sylvia Lima at Please contact your student’s sender school prior to registering for benchmark testing at Stevenson to verify your student didn’t already take the exam earlier in the year.

Students who have prior coursework or experience in Chinese, French, German, Hebrew or Latin, and are interested in potential placement in one of these language programs beyond the introductory level, may also sign up for the corresponding language benchmark exam.

English Benchmark Information/Registration
Students who can provide a standardized reading and/or English test score (from the MAP, AIMS or Iowa tests, for example) do not need additional assessment. They can simply have a current English Language Arts teacher send scores and a recommendation to Tim Foley in the Communication Arts Division at

If a student cannot provide a standardized reading and/or English test score, recommendations/placement in Freshman English and literacy courses will be determined by two reading tests of the student’s ability to comprehend and analyze text. Students should expect to read texts and answer questions in argumentative paragraphs.

To register for an English benchmark exam, contact Denise Perkins at