Cognitive ability is one of the most important indicators of academic achievement in mathematics. Research has consistently shown that a positive correlation exists between cognitive abilities and academic achievement. Many Canadian schools rely on individual intelligence and cognitive abilities tests to categorize students as gifted in particular subjects. These are mainly group tests administered in schools by class teachers. The Canadian Cognitive Abilities Test (CCAT) is a group test that measures the verbal, quantitative, and nonverbal cognitive ability of K-12 students. In addition to identifying your child’s strengths and abilities, the test results serve as an initial screening for students who may be gifted or who need specific follow-up enhancements.
Is the CCAT Similar to the CogAT?
Similar to the CogAT test widely administered in the US, the Canadian Cognitive Ability Test (CCAT) measures the cognitive ability of K-12 students in Canada. The two tests are very similar in format. CCAT does not assess students based on what the regular math curriculum has taught them. The test measures the reasoning skills and problem-solving abilities of students.
What Does CCAT Measure?
- CCAT identifies underperforming and gifted students
- It helps teachers make decisions for grouping students based on their academic progress
- It helps educators identify students’ cognitive strengths and weaknesses
- CCAT identifies a student’s specific learning style and determines the most effective teaching methods based on that learning style.
CCAT Test Format
Each CCAT level comprises three batteries: the verbal battery, the nonverbal battery, and the quantitative battery. For each battery, the students attempt a number of multiple-choice questions.
The verbal battery:
The verbal battery assesses a student’s understanding of the structure of language and relationships between words. It measures reasoning flexibility and fluency in a language with verbal tasks. The questions are based on picture analogies, sentence completion, and picture classification.
The quantitative battery:
The quantitative battery assesses the student’s abilities for reasoning and problem solving for mathematical problems. The questions are based on number analogies, number puzzles, and number series.
The nonverbal battery:
This nonverbal battery assesses a student’s ability to reason and solve problems using geometrical diagrams and pictures. The questions are based on figure matrices, figure classification, and paper folding.
CCAT Result Format
The CCAT results are reported in percentile and stanine scores for three CCAT sub-tests and an overall composite score. Your child’s results on the CCAT are compared to a norm group (a large representative population of children across Canada) of students the same age as your child.
A typical format for the CCAT scorecard:
The composite score of all three batteries assesses the breadth and strength of a student’s abilities for learning. Students with higher scores may grasp the curriculum quickly. Students with lower scores may experience difficulty with areas of the curriculum.
The percentile score tells the teacher or parent/guardian what percentage of students in the norm group performed below that score. For example, if a student received a percentile score of 60%, it means that this student performed better than 60% of the norm group, and that 40% of the norm group performed better than this student. Percentile scores run from 1 to 99. The lower the percentile, the lower that student performed on the CCAT compared to the norm group.
The stanine score organizes percentile scores into nine equal parts ranging from 1 to 9.
How to Prepare for the CCAT?
As with any other assessment, preparation for CCAT requires discipline and determination. Your child does not need to be a prodigy to achieve a high score in CCAT. All your child needs is a willing mindset to learn and the right kind of help.
Many students find it hard to get through the quantitative part of the test and look for a math tutor. CCAT is different from the regular assessments in schools. Therefore, students preparing for CCAT can immensely benefit from a foundational math program. With the right kind of mentorship offered by the MathProject, your child can build the confidence to score high in CCAT.
Do you want to give your child the best opportunity to learn mathematics? Contact us and book a FREE assessment today!
Effects of general and broad cognitive abilities on mathematics achievement. — www.psycnet.apa.org/home
The mediating role of cognitive ability on the relationship between motor proficiency and early academic achievement in children. — www.sciencedirect.com
School-based assessment research in Canada — https://mje.mcgill.ca/
The Cognitive Abilities Test (CogAT) — www.riversideinsights.com/cognitive_abilities_test