NJDOE News
For More Information Contact the Public Information Office:
    Jon Zlock
    Richard Vespucci
    Ron Rice

    609-292-1126

For Release: March 2, 2004


High School Students Prepare for HSPA Administration;
Graduation Exam Scheduled for March 2-4

New Jersey’s High School Proficiency test will be administered to approximately 96,000 11th grade public school students on March 2, 3, and 4, 2004.

The HSPA will be administered in two sections: language arts literacy and mathematics. Passing both sections is a requirement for a high school diploma. Students who are unable to take the test on any of the scheduled days next week will have opportunities to take make-up exams on March 9, 10, and 11.

The HSPA serves as the state’s graduation test. It tests student knowledge and skills aligned with the state’s academic standards, known as the Core Curriculum Content Standards. Students who fail one or both sections of the exam will have additional opportunities to pass in the fall and spring of their senior year. For example, in addition to the 11th graders who will be taking the HSPA for the first time next week, approximately 18,000 12th grade students who scored in the partially proficient range in the spring and fall of 2002, will re-take the HSPA for the final time.

HSPA testing begins on March 2 in the area of mathematics. The test will consist of 40 multiple choice and 8 open-ended items which includes both operational and field test items. Total test administration time will be approximately 2 hours, 40 minutes.

Testing continues on March 3 in language arts literacy. The test will consist of 10 multiple choice and 2 open-ended items, and one writing task, plus field test items that will vary from district to district. Total test administration time will be approximately 2 hours, 40 minutes.

Operational HSPA testing concludes on March 4 in language arts literacy. This test will also consist of 10 multiple choice and 2 open-ended items, and one writing task, plus field test items that will vary from district to district. Total test administration time will be approximately 2 hours, 56 minutes.

A science field test will be administered on March 5 to first-time eleventh graders only. This science component of HSPA is being developed to meet recent federal requirements that states implement science testing at three benchmark grade levels by 2007-2008.

Sample HSPA items can be found on the Department of Education’s Web site:

http://www.nj.gov/njded/assessment/hs/

For more information, please contact the Department of Education Public Information Office at (609) 292-1126.