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How to Understand Your Child’s HSPT Scores

When parents receive the HSPT score report it can often be confusing to decipher. There is one main score to look for on the score report and that is called the Composite National Percentile, which is abbreviated as “NP-NS” under the “Performance Scores” section. This is a student’s national score and is the score that high schools generally use for admissions. Students will also be given National Percentiles for each of the 5 subtests. Taken together, these 5 subtest scores make up the Composite National Percentile score.

The percentile-rank scale ranges from 1 to 99 and compares the performance of an individual student with that of other students within the same grade level. A National Percentile compares a student’s performance to students in a national sample. An NP score of 75, for example, means that the student scored higher than 75% of all students taking the HSPT. A 99th percentile means that the student scored higher than 99% of all students and is in the top 1% of all test takers.

There is also a Local Percentile (LP-LS) which is often significantly lower than the National Percentile, which can lead to some confusion. A Local Percentile compares a student’s performance to other local students. A local group consists of all of the students who tested at a particular school or group of schools. If test takers are strong in this local group, a student’s Local Percentile will be lower than their National Percentile. Schools generally use the National Percentile in their admissions considerations, so don’t worry if the Local Percentile is lower.

For an explanation of the other test measures – SS (standard score), GE (grade equivalent), CSQ (cognitive skills quotient) and ST (stanine) – we refer you to this link that brings you to a page on the STS testing site:


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