NY State English Language Arts Test (ELA)

Who takes this test?

New for school year 2020-21: The New York State Education Department (NYSED) has determined that it will not be possible to administer Grades 3–8 English Language Arts (ELA) and Mathematics exams and the Grades 4 and 8 Science exams remotely. Assessments will be school-based and in-person. Schools will reach out to families to determine which students are interested in participating in state exams. Only students whose families have replied with a request to test will participate in the Spring 2021 exams. 

Students in grades 3–8 take the State English Language Arts (ELA) test each spring. For 2021, more information is included in the Student Participation Guide for Grades 3-8 New York State tests. Students who have been in the United States for less than one year are not required to take the NY State ELA test in their grade, but must start taking ELA tests after their first year. Some students with disabilities may take the NY State Alternate Assessments (NYSAA) in place of the State test, if it says so on their Individualized Education Plan (IEP).

When is this test given?

For school year 2020-21, English Language Arts exam dates are April 19-29.

What is on the test?

For school year 2020-21 only, the ELA test will be a one-day, untimed test, containing only multiple-choice questions.

How is the test scored?

The NY State Grades 3-8 exams are multiple-choice only, and scored via an automated scanning process.

How are the results reported?

The number of correct answers a student gives on a test is converted into the student’s “scale score.” Scale scores are divided into four performance levels. Schools distribute test results on Individual Student Reports for each family. The Student Reports include the student's scale score, performance level, and information on his or her strengths and weaknesses in the different skill areas tested.

Back to Top