HSPT Reading Practice Test

What Is the High School Placement Test (HSPT)?

Grade-level students pursuing entry into Catholic high schools may be required to take the High School Placement Test (HSPT). This test is administered by Scholastic Testing Services as an admissions examination for these schools. It was the first battery test that was explicitly fashioned to help with the placement of students entering high school and has been used since 1955 for schools to assess students’ competencies in cognitive and major skill areas. The examination is standardized in order to produce results that are comparable and accurate for freshman-level high school students.

Students should register to take the HSPT exam at the high school they wish to attend, but, if desired, they are given the option to send their scores to additional schools. The exam is made up of five different multiple-choice test sections:

  1. Language
  2. Mathematics
  3. Quantitative
  4. Reading
  5. Verbal
HSPT Reading Practice Test


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HSPT Exam Testing Options

When students take any of the five HSPT test sections they will be taking the Open HSPT. This test format provides schools with national normative measures for all of the skill areas tested. However, if a high school participates in a lease/score program, the school is provided with a seventh grade edition of the HSPT, referred to as the Pre-HSPT, or a secure test, the Closed HSPT.

HSPT Exam Formats

Upon request, the exam is available in the following specialized formats:

  • Audio
  • Braille
  • Large Print

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HSPT Exam Scoring

The HSPT exam is scored as follows:

  • Per test section, one point is awarded for each correct response.
  • No points are deducted for incorrect responses in all test sections, so it is recommended to answer all questions even if you are not sure of the answer.

The student will receive multiple scores for the exam performance:

  • Raw Score: Total of correct responses in each of the test sections.
  • Scaled Score: Scholastic Testing Service, the organization responsible for the administration of the HSPT, will use different versions of the HSPT test to assess students. A scaled score will thus translate accordingly across all versions of the test with each raw score converted into a scaled score between 200 and 800.

Students’ Percentile Ranks

After scoring is complete, the student will be given their percentile ranks for each of the test sections (Language, Mathematics, Quantitative, Reading and Verbal). These ranks are intended to let the student know their standing as compared to national and local samples. The percentile ranks are followed by stanines, which are representative of the percentile rank in a score of one to nine. To score well on any of the test sections, students should plan ahead to have time to prep and practice for the HSPT by reviewing HSPT study guides and taking several online practice tests.

Explanation of Scores

Cognitive Skills: Includes the CSQ, Scaled Scores, Percentile Ranks and Stanines from the Verbal and Quantitative Skills test sections.

Basic Skills: Includes Scaled Scores, Percentile Ranks and Stanine from the Reading, Mathematics and Language Skills test sections.

Composite: A combined Scaled Score, Percentile Rank and Stanine based on the student’s performance in all five test sections.

Cognitive Skills Quotient (CSQ): The CSQ is scored on a range of 55 to 145 and is designed to be similar to an IQ score. It is based on age to reflect the student’s potential learning ability.

Grade Equivalent (GE): The GE reflects how a student performed in terms of grade level. For example, a GE of 9.5 would mean that the student scored as well as a ninth grade in the fifth month of the academic year.

HSPT Exam Reports

Rank-Order List Reports: Uses composite scores to rank students from high to low.

Pressure-Sensitive Labels: Shows the student’s CSQ, Standard Scores, National and Local Percentiles and GE for the Reading, Mathematics and Language section tests.

Group Summary Statistical Reports: Provides a summary of overall group performance for each section test, individually and jointly.

Alphabetical List Reports: Provides CSQs, Standard Scores, National and Local Percentiles and GEs for the Reading, Mathematics and Language section tests for students, organized alphabetically.

HSPT Reading Skills Test Section

The Reading Skills test section of the High School Placement Test (HSPT) exam contains a total of 62 questions. During the exam, students will not be provided scratch paper but they are allowed to write on their exam booklet. The student will be given 25 minutes to respond to questions that concern the following content areas and skills:

  • Comprehension (40 Questions)
  • Vocabulary (22 Questions)

Within these content areas and skills on the Reading Skills test section, the student will be asked questions that assess their comprehension of concepts within given passages. These passages will be from a variety of subjects, such as history, literature, science and societal topics. The questions will ask about the following:

  • Main ideas
  • Supporting ideas
  • Theme
  • Tone
  • Author’s intent
  • Vocabulary in context

HSPT Test Online Prep Course

If you want to be fully prepared, Mometrix offers an online HSPT Prep Course. The course is designed to provide you with any and every resource you might want while studying. The HSPT Course includes:

  • 50 Lessons Covering all the Topics
  • 1,450+ HSPT Practice Questions
  • Over 100 Video Tutorials
  • More than 350 Electronic Flashcards
  • Money-back Guarantee
  • Free Mobile Access
  • and More!

The HSPT Prep Course is designed to help any learner get everything they need to prepare for their HSPT exam; click below to check it out.

Preparing for the HSPT Reading Skills Test Section

As a student prepares to take the HSPT Reading Skills test section, it is advisable to start by measuring their current level of skills by seeing how they perform on an HSPT practice test. Based on their skill level, they should then continue their HSPT test prep by reviewing a study guide and taking further HSPT practice tests. These practice tests are available online through Mometrix.

Upgrade your studying with our HSPT study guide and flashcards:
HSPT Study Guide
HSPT Online Course
HSPT Flashcards
HSPT Test – Home


by Mometrix Test Preparation | Last Updated: December 28, 2021