Navigating Annual Standardized Assessments for Homeschooled Students in Grade 8


For homeschooled students in grade 8, annual assessments are an important part of tracking progress. Not only do they provide feedback on academic strengths and weaknesses, but they can also offer insights into college readiness and career paths. This guide will explore the different tests available to homeschooled students in grade 8, including the PSAT 8/9, the CLT8, and the Iowa Complete. With this information in hand, parents can make informed decisions about which assessments best align with their student’s academic goals.

Why Should 8th Graders Take a Standardized Assessment?

Standardized tests are assessments typically taken by high school students; however, students in grade 8 can take a standardized assessment to prepare for the rigor and content of the SAT, ACT, and other tests. 8th-grade students’ test scores are not submitted to colleges but can be reviewed by the student, the student’s family, and the student’s school to see how well the student tests and where there are areas for improvement.

Additionally, many states require students to take a standardized assessment. You can check Enlightium’s state blogs or to see if your state requires 8th-grade students to take a standardized test.

Which Standardized Tests Should an 8th-Grader Consider?

Students in grade 8 can consider three testing options:

  1. The Iowa Complete assessment tests students on reading, writing, math, and science skills. 8th-grade students enrolled at Enlightium Academy can take the Iowa Complete in the Spring. An opportunity to register will be provided by Enlightium Academy during its third quarter.
  2. The PSAT 8/9 is a standardized test that measures their knowledge in reading, writing, and math. It is the same format as the PSAT for high school students, but with age-appropriate content. Homeschooled students can take the assessment in-person at their local public school. If you are interested in having your child take the PSAT 8/9, you can register at and inform your local public school that you want your child to take this test
  3. The CLT8 is a test that assesses student performance across verbal reasoning, grammar and writing, and quantitative reasoning. This test does not need to be administered in person, so students can take it online from home. If you are interested in having your student take the CLT8, you can find registration information at

All three of these assessments can help parents gain insight into their child’s academic strengths and weaknesses as they prepare for high school.

What Can Students Expect in the Assessments?

Writing assessments are typically included in annual assessments. These types of tests measure a student’s ability to craft compelling essays or stories through analysis of literature or other related topics. Writing can be tested in multiple genres such as persuasive writing, creative writing, poetry analysis, or expository essay prompts. To prepare for this component of an assessment it is important to make sure your student understands basic grammar rules and has practice responding to different types of prompts ahead of time.

Math assessments often include questions from all areas of mathematics including algebraic equations, geometry, data analysis, and probability questions. When preparing for a math assessment it can be helpful to review formulas and practice applying them to solve problems independently. Additionally, having some knowledge of statistics and real-world application problems can be beneficial when taking any type of math test.

With an understanding of each type of exam available, parents can work with their child to ensure they are best prepared by setting realistic goals and expectations prior to test day.

Furthermore, staying informed about each specific requirement associated with each assessed subject area will help families make more informed decisions when selecting which tests best suit their student’s academic goals.


Enlightium Academy is a private Christian online school that serves homeschooling families by offering a Bible-based, flexible, accredited, teacher-supported, and affordable education from the comfort of your home. For any other questions about Enlightium, please call (509) 319-2288, or visit


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