In the state of Oregon, public school students are assessed in English Language Arts and Mathematics in grades 3-8 and again in grade 11. Students are tested in Social Sciences and Science in grades 5, 8, and 11.
Social Sciences and Science tests are assessed using the Oregon Assessment of Knowledge and Skills (OAKS). English Language Arts and Mathematics are assessed through Smarter Balanced Assessment Consortium (SBAC) tests, as of the 2014-2015 school year.
In this article, we’ll provide directions for accessing OAKS practice tests online, offer SBAC tests for download, and give you all the tips and information you need to prepare your child for Oregon state tests.
SBAC Oregon Basics
Oregon students take SBAC tests in English Language Arts and Mathematics in grades 3-8 and grade 11. If you want your child to use a downloadable PDF of the test, please click on one of the buttons below to download a grade-appropriate SBAC test.
Along with the SBAC practice test PDF, you will also receive a bonus PDF "5 Top Tips to Use Practice Tests Effectively" to help your child study for the test.
All SBAC tests are untimed and consist of two parts: a computer adaptive test and a Performance Task.
The computer adaptive test asks increasingly rigorous questions if students are answering correctly and less challenging questions if students answer incorrectly. This allows for more accurate test scores and more precise information about student strengths and weaknesses.
On the computer adaptive test, question types for both ELA and Mathematics include:
Performance Tasks take about 45 minutes to complete and require students to apply grade level appropriate skills and knowledge, as well as critical thinking and problem solving, to respond to complex real-world problems.
In the next sections, we’ll take a closer look at the skills assessed on both SBAC exams.
SBAC English Language Arts
The English Language Arts exam assesses four major skills:
Students read a variety of grade-level appropriate texts, both literary and informational. They may be required to compare, integrate, and analyze information across multiple texts.
Reading comprehension questions may focus on:
Students are assessed on the ability to revise, edit, and compose both informational and narrative written texts.
Students respond to both passage-based and stand-alone questions related to revising and editing. Students may be asked to correct sentences, better organize a text, improve word choice, etc.
Questions also include brief writes, which require students to write short narrative, informational, and opinion-based texts (or add information to existing texts).
Lastly, students complete a Performance Task, which requires them to read several provided sources and take purposeful notes. Students then answer three questions about the sources and write an informational article or an opinion piece about a related prompt.
Below are the directions for a 7th grade ELA Performance Task:
Speaking and Listening
To demonstrate listening skills, students listen to several one-minute informational audio presentations and respond to comprehension questions.
The content of these questions is essentially identical to the content of the reading comprehension questions, as in this 3rd grade sample question based on an audio presentation about the Northern Lights:
Students may rewind the audio or pause to take notes as needed.
Students answer multiple choice questions related to paraphrasing texts, avoiding plagiarism, evaluating the credibility of sources, choosing relevant evidence to support claims, and taking purposeful notes.
Research skills are also assessed using the Performance Task mentioned in the above writing section. As part of the Performance Task, students respond to research-based questions on the provided sources.
ELA SBAC is a challenging assessment, but students can utilize SBAC Oregon practice tests to prepare effectively.
SBAC Oregon Mathematics
The Mathematics test also assesses four major skill areas:
Concepts and Procedures
Depending on grade level, students answer questions related to topics such as:
These questions require students to apply grade-level appropriate mathematics to solve complex real-world problems.
It’s also important for students to be able to identify key information in a practical situation and map the relationship using diagrams, graphs, formulas, etc.
Students should be able to explain and justify their reasoning as they answer mathematical problems.
They should also be able to explain flaws in reasoning. Students may be asked to critique, prove, justify, or investigate mathematical conjectures and logic and complete longer “investigations.”
Modeling and Data Analysis
This skill is assessed using a Performance Task. Students must apply math to real world situations at a deeper level of understanding.
They may be asked to develop mathematical models of their own or improve upon provided models, make reasoned estimates, and plan, design, evaluate, and recommend tasks.
Below is the information used to answer questions in a 6th grade Mathematics Performance Task.
This information was then used to answer questions like the following:
For this assessment, too, SBAC Oregon practice tests are an excellent preparation tool that can help your child build confidence and familiarity with test content.
Oregon students take OAKS tests in Science and Social Sciences in grades 5, 8, and 11.
Like the SBAC, OAKS assessments are untimed and administered via a computer adaptive test.Questions may be selected response or constructed response.
There are six score reporting categories:
To view more sample questions, take an OAKS practice test through the OAKS Portal.
OAKS Social Sciences
There are six reporting categories for this test also:
To access additional sample questions, visit the OAKS Portal and take an OAKS practice test.
Using the OAKS Portal to Access Practice Tests
Through the OAKS Portal, you and your child can take practice tests for SBAC ELA and Math and OAKS Science or Social Sciences at any grade level.
Follow the steps below:
Preparing for OAKS and SBAC Oregon
First, remember that both OAKS and SBAC are based on the standards that your child will be learning throughout the school year. More than ever, paying attention in class is crucial for your child. Encourage him to take notes, complete all assignments, and ask for help when needed.
If your child struggles in a key area, ask the teacher for extra help or consider hiring a tutor.
You can also help your child work on SBAC and OAKS practice tests through the OAKS Portal. Be sure that your child understands why right answers are correct and wrong answers are incorrect.
Instead of simply answering questions, also take the time to discuss them and find the best approaches to various question types.
By following these tips and consistently using SBAC Oregon and OAKS practice tests, you’re setting your child up for success on state testing.