Find a NUMATS Test Center

NUMATS tests are administered in multiple locations throughout the United States.  Visit the NUMATS Test Centers page in order to search for test sites by city, state, test and date.

Details

Benefits Beyond Testing

Research shows that participation in talent searches such as NUMATS benefits gifted students in a number of ways. Participants continue their achievement into high school, college and beyond, receiving more awards and honors than academically talented non-participants. They take more accelerated and advanced courses than other students, and they tend to excel, not burn out.

Just as important, research shows that schools tend to follow up on the results of their students’ testing, with everything from certificates of accomplishment to individual meetings with parents and students for assistance in interpreting their scores. School coordinators report that NUMATS not only helps them determine academic programs commensurate with students’ abilities, but also helps their students find program options not available through their schools.

In addition, practice and early exposure to above-grade-level testing builds confidence when testing for college readiness (EXPLORE) or college admission (ACT and SAT). Students become more willing to take on challenges. And they start to think more about what they can achieve not only in school but also in life.

Specific benefits:

  • MYCTD Toolbox, a secure, password-protected website where schools and families can access a wealth of resources upon completion of a NUMATS registration:
    • Test preparation materials
    • Long-range academic plan, an online record of the student's scores and NUMATS percentiles with suggestions for selecting coursework and extracurricular activities in math, science, social science and the humanities matched to students' scores
    • Statistical Summary showing EXPLORE, ACT and SAT score distributions, including percentile rankings, for NUMATS test takers
    • Instructional resources for use at home and in the classroom
    • Current articles on parenting gifted students
  • Educational Program Guide, an online, searchable listing of schools and programs for academically talented students throughout the United States
  • Certificate of participation
  • Invitation to highest scorers to attend award ceremony held at Northwestern University, with scholarships to CTD programs for first-place scorers; additional invitations to state and local award ceremonies
  • Invitation to participate in future talent searches
  • Invitation to apply for CTD's Summer Program and online learning programs well as other programs, depending on individual qualifications
  • Mailings of interest to gifted students and their parents from other programs and special schools located in NUMATS states and beyond
  • The College Guide, mailed to students in their sophomore and junior years. It features articles on college admissions to help students get started with college planning.

Eligibility

Participation in Northwestern University's Midwest Academic Talent Search (NUMATS) can boost student self-confidence, help educators better address academic needs and expose students to a variety of enrichment programs at schools, at universities and through distance learning. Students who are most likely to benefit from NUMATS are those in grades 3 through 9 who meet at least one of the criteria listed below.

√  Past talent search participation

Students who qualified for and participated in a talent search in a previous year qualify to participate in NUMATS this year and are encouraged to take the same test to measure academic growth and/or experience a different test for practice.

√  Participation in a school gifted program

Students in grades 3 through 9 who qualify for their school’s gifted programs are encouraged to register for NUMATS testing.

√  Recommendation by a parent or teacher

To be recommended, students should

  • demonstrate advanced aptitude in verbal or mathematical reasoning,
  • consistently demonstrate a high level of performance on academically demanding course work or
  • often request more challenging experiences

√  Meet grade-level assessment criteria in either verbal/reading or math on a nationally normed or state achievement test.

Nationally normed tests

The verbal, math or composite score or subscore from a nationally normed, standardized grade-level achievement, aptitude, or abilities test can qualify a student for NUMATS. Scores from tests taken in previous years may be used to qualify.

Examples of nationally normed tests that may be used to determine eligibility for NUMATS include but are not limited to:

  • Cognitive Abilities Test (CoGAT)
  • ERB Tests: Comprehensive Testing Program (CTP), Independent School Entrance Exam (ISEE)
  • Iowa Test of Basic Skills (ITBS)
  • Northwest Evaluation Association (NWEA) Tests: Measures of Academic Progress (MAP), MAP for Primary Grades
  • Stanford Achievement Test
  • Terra Nova

Depending on the test, the naming of scores or subscores may vary:

  • Verbal scores may be called Total Reading, Verbal, Reading Composite, or Verbal Ability.
  • The Verbal subscore may be called Vocabulary, Comprehension, Reading Comprehension, or Reading.
  • Math scores may be called Total Math, Quantitative, Math Composite, Quantitative Ability, or Math Composite.
  • The Math subscore may be called Math Concepts & Applications, Problem Solving/Reasoning, or Problem Solving.
  • The Composite score may be called Total Battery, Composite, Total Aptitude, Core Total, Complete Battery, or Total Score.
Students Currently in Grade Verbal/Reading, Math, or Composite

(Categories or Subcategories)

 May Take
3 ≥ 92nd percentile EXPLORE
4-5 ≥ 90th percentile EXPLORE
6 90th-94th percentile EXPLORE
6 ≥ 95th percentile ACT and/or SAT
7-9 ≥ 90th percentile ACT and/or SAT

 

State achievement tests

Students qualify for NUMATS with at least one (either verbal/reading or math) of the state test scores given below. Scores from tests taken in previous years may be used to qualify.

State

Test

Grade When Test was Taken

Verbal/Reading

Math

Illinois

ISAT

(level)

3-8

Exceeds

Exceeds

Indiana

ISTEP+

(level)

3-8

Pass+

Pass+

Michigan

MEAP

(scale score)

3

≥ 364

≥ 367

4

≥ 470

≥ 467

5

≥ 575

≥ 569

6

≥ 666

≥ 671

7

≥ 779

≥ 761

8

≥ 887

≥ 859

Minnesota

MCA II (percentile)

3

≥ 92nd

≥ 92nd

4-8

≥ 90th

≥ 90th

North Dakota

NDSA

(level)

3-8

Advanced

Advanced

Ohio

OAA

(level)

3-8

Advanced

Advanced

South Dakota

Dakota STEP

(level)

3-8

Advancing

Advancing

Wisconsin

WKCE

(percentile

3

≥ 92nd

≥ 92nd

4-8

≥ 90th

≥ 90th

TESTS: EXPLORE, ACT, SAT

EXPLORE

NUMATS utilizes the EXPLORE test, developed by ACT for students in grade 8, to determine the abilities of students in grades 3 through 6. EXPLORE includes subtests in English, math, reading and science. Registered students arrive to assigned test center at 8:00 am. The test takes between 3–3½ hours to complete. A non-Saturday test date is available for students whose religious observance prohibits testing on a Saturday.

ACT

NUMATS utilizes the ACT test, typically used for college admissions, to provide a more accurate picture of the abilities of advanced students in grades 6 through 9. ACT includes subtests in English, math, reading and science. Registered students arrive to assigned test center at 8:00 am. The test takes between 4–4½ hours to complete. Non-Saturday test dates are for students whose religious observance prohibits testing on Saturdays.

Note: Students may add an optional ACT Writing section to the test if their registrations are completed by a regular registration deadline. If you wish to add writing, you should call ACT at 319/337-1270 no earlier than two weeks after completing your NUMATS registration, but no later than ACT’s late registration deadline for the test date you have chosen. ACT will charge you an additional $16.50 for this section, and it will add about 30 minutes to the test time. NUMATS does not provide comparison percentiles for ACT Writing.

SAT

NUMATS utilizes the SAT test, typically used for college admissions, to provide a more accurate picture of the abilities of advanced students in grades 6 through 9. SAT includes subtests in critical reading, math and writing. Registered students arrive to assigned test center at 7:45 am. The test takes 4½–5 hours to complete. Non-Saturday test dates are for students whose religious observance prohibits testing on Saturdays. 

Note: Students in grade 9 registering for SAT must do so in a two-step process. After completing the NUMATS portion of your registration, you will receive an e-mail directing you to SAT’s website to register for the test itself. When registering with SAT, you should choose the “high school not listed” option if you don’t want scores sent to a school. You also should enter “Northwestern Universitys Midwest Acdmc Talent Srch” as an organization to which you want an additional score report sent. This will ensure that we receive your child’s scores and that you receive customized percentiles and an academic plan in your online MYCTD Toolbox account.

Which test(s) should my student(s) take?

 

 

 Grade

First-time Testers

Subsequent Testers

 

Should take:

If grade-level test results* were:

 

 Should take:

 

 Considerations:

3

EXPLORE

≥ 92nd percentile

NA

NA

4

EXPLORE

≥ 90th percentile

EXPLORE

None

5

EXPLORE

≥ 90th percentile

EXPLORE

None

6

EXPLORE

= 90th- 94th percentile

EXPLORE

EXPLORE scores in grade 5 were below 21 in reading and math AND below 19 in composite

ACT and/or SAT

≥ 95th percentile

ACT and/or SAT

EXPLORE scores in grade 5 were 21 or above in reading or math OR 19 or above in composite

7

ACT and/or SAT

≥ 90th percentile

ACT and/or SAT

Take both/either test(s) or the test not taken in grade 6

8

ACT and/or SAT

≥ 90th percentile

ACT and/or SAT

Take both tests or the test not taken in grade 7

9

ACT and/or SAT

≥ 90th percentile

ACT and/or SAT

Last opportunity to take both tests as part of Talent Search

*verbal/reading, mathematics or composite

 

If you think your student may be an exception to the guidelines provided above, please do not hesitate to call us at 847/491-3782 ext. 3.

NUMATS suggests that students in grades 7 through 9 (and in grade 6 if applicable) take both the ACT and SAT each year for the following reasons:

√  Given the differences in the tests (ACT was originally designed to be a curriculum-based achievement test, whereas SAT has traditionally focused on critical thinking and problem-solving abilities), some students tend to score better on one test than the other. 
√  Students will gain much-needed practice on high-stakes tests when the results do not count for college admission.
√  Some colleges and universities require scores from one or the other test in the application process. Taking both will ensure your child gains practice on either test that a particular college or university requires.

Many parents are concerned that scores from an ACT or SAT test taken in grades 6 through 9 will remain on their child’s permanent record and could have a negative impact in the college application process. This is NOT true.

 √  College Board annually purges the SAT scores of participants who register for the test through NUMATS. If you wish to retain scores, you must send them a written request to do so prior to June 30 of the academic year in which your child tests. If preserved, scores are available for future use, but only if and when your child instructs College Board to do so. Students in grade 9 are covered by normal SAT score-reporting policies available on the College Board website.
√  ACT does retain scores, but parents need not worry. The testing agency will not report a particular score to a specific college or university unless your child directs them to do so. Keep in mind that your child is likely to take the ACT many times in grades 10 through 12, and only those scores he/she specifically designates will be sent to colleges or universities of choice.

Many parents are also concerned that there are a limited number of times their child can take either the ACT or SAT. There is no limit to the number of times a student may test through a talent search organization such as NUMATS.

For additional information about testing agency policies, please refer to their websites:

√  http://www.actstudent.org
√  http://sat.collegeboard.org

Dates & Fees

Tests are offered year-round at centers throughout the U.S. Test dates, registration deadlines and fees for the 2014-2015 school year are shown in the table below.

 

 

 

Test

 

Regular

Registration Deadline

 

Late

Registration Period1

 

 

Test Dates2, 3

 

Regular Fees1

 

NUMATS

 

Test

 

Total

EXPLORE

October 8, 2014

October 9-12, 2014

November 8, 2014

$38

$33

$71

December 22, 2014

December 23-28, 2014

January 24, 2015

January 14, 2015

January 15-19, 2015

February 21, 2015

ACT4

August 6, 2014

August 7-19, 2014

September 13, 2014

$38

$38

$76

September 17, 2014

September 18-30, 2014

October 25, 2014

November 5, 2014

November 6-18, 2014

December 13, 2014

January 7, 2015

January 8-13, 2015

February 7, 2015

March 11, 2015

March 12-24, 2015

April 18, 2015

May 6, 2015

May 7-19, 2015

June 13, 2015

SAT

September 9, 2014

 

 

 

Not Applicable

October 11, 2014

$38

$52.50

$90.50

October 6, 2014

November 8, 2014

November 3, 2014

December 6, 2014

January 4, 2015

January 24, 2015

February 10, 2015

March 14, 2015

April 1, 2015

May 2, 2015

May 5, 2015

June 6, 2015

 

Search test locations by date

Important

1Late fees are assessed during late registration periods and must be paid in addition to regular fees.

  • EXPLORE – $14
  • ACT – $24
  • SAT – Not applicable

2Non-Saturday test dates are available for students whose religious observance prohibits Saturday testing. A letter from clergy requesting this option must be sent to NUMATS such that it is received by the registration deadline for the chosen test date.

  • EXPLORE – January 25, 2015
  • ACT and SAT – Sunday test dates immediately follow each Saturday test date, unless there is a conflict with a religious holiday.

3Scores from all test dates now are considered for the NUMATS Award Ceremony but may not be considered by other state organizations depending on the date of the organization's ceremony.

4ACT Writing may not be added if registration is completed during a late registration period.

Fees
The total cost for a student to participate in NUMATS is paid during a one-step registration process and covers two fees: the NUMATS fee and the test fee. The test fee payment is sent by NUMATS to the appropriate testing agency. The NUMATS fee covers registration processing and access to the online MYCTD Toolbox, which provides many valuable resources, including follow-up materials that help you interpret your child’s test scores.

However, students in grade 9 registering for SAT must do so in a two-step process. After completing and paying for the NUMATS portion of the registration, they must register and pay for the test directly through the testing agency.

√  Fees are not refundable for any reason and may not be transferred to a future academic year.
√  There is a $30 charge for returned checks.
√  Late fees are assessed during late registration periods and must be paid in addition to regular fees.

Students who are unable to test on their scheduled test date may be able to reschedule for a later test date by calling the testing agency directly. The testing agency will assess a change-of-date fee.

√  EXPLORE – 319/337-1369

√  ACT – 319/337-1270

√  SAT – 866/756-7346

School Payment Plan
Generally families pay for their child’s NUMATS participation. However, given the tough economic times, a district/school may want to pay all or part of the registration fees. To offer this option, complete a 2015 School Payment Form [link] and return as directed.

Financial Aid

NUMATS offers need-based financial aid for students who qualify for other federally subsidized programs and may be requested during the registration process. A financial aid letter stating the student meets the eligibility criteria, written on school letterhead and signed by a school official, is required to complete registration. It must be submitted to NUMATS such that it is received by the registration deadline for the chosen test date.

√  Fax to 847/467-4283 Monday through Friday, 8:30 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.
√  Scan and e-mail to numats@ctd.northwestern.edu.
√  Mail to NUMATS Financial Aid, 617 Dartmouth Pl, Evanston, IL 60208.

View an example of a financial aid eligibility letter. If unable to provide this letter, contact NUMATS for other options.

NUMATS registrants seeking financial aid may receive one or more of the following:

√  NUMATS Fee Waiver – Submit eligibility letter and NUMATS fee will be waived.
√  Jack Kent Cooke (JKC) Young Scholars Test Fee Waiver – Available on a limited first-come, first-served basis to students in grade 7 who receive a NUMATS Fee Waiver; JKC pays the test fee.
√  Test Fee Waiver – Available on a limited first-come, first-served basis. Students in grade 9 registering for SAT are not eligible for a test fee waiver.

Qualified students are eligible for no more than one NUMATS fee waiver and one test fee waiver per academic year. If a student wishes to register for more than one test, the total cost must be paid for the additional test(s).

Learn more about the Jack Kent Cooke Young Scholars Program

Special Accommodations

Special accommodations may be made for students with a disability that requires special testing tools or an exception to standard testing procedures. Testing agencies determine allowable accommodations.

Request special accommodations when completing NUMATS registration and submit both NUMATS and test fees. NUMATS will mail you special accommodations forms, which you must complete and mail directly to the testing agency. Once you have completed a registration, ACT and EXPLORE forms are also available for download from the NUMATS Info page of your online MYCTDToolbox.

Online registration deadlines for special accommodations requests are approximately eight weeks prior to the scheduled test date.

What To Expect from Start to Finish

√  August

Registration begins for all test dates, September through June. See Dates & Fees for test dates and fees; see Test Centers for test center locations.

√  After registration is complete

Families are able to access the many valuable NUMATS resources of the online MYCTD Toolbox.

√  In the weeks preceding test day

Log in to the online MYCTD Toolbox, click on the NUMATS Info tab and scroll down through the various sections to find out what you need to know about the testing process. Be sure to

  •  Review the NUMATS Student Guide in Section 2 – Prepare for the Test.
  • Take your practice test in Section 2 – Prepare for the Test.
  • Print out and complete the Student ID Form (ACT and SAT only) in Section 3 – Day of the Test; students in grade 9 taking SAT must have a photo ID.

√  At least one week before test day

Students receive an admission ticket in the mail directly from the testing agency, which contains information on when and where to go and what to bring on test day. If the student has not received the admission ticket, call the testing agency to ask for the student's registration number and the test center assignment.

  • EXPLORE – 319/337-1369
  • ACT – 319/337-1270
  • SAT – 866/756-7346

√  Test day

  • Students should arrive at the test center with their admission ticket and other items by 7:45 or 8:00 a.m., depending on the test. Admission ticket will state what time to arrive and what to bring.
  • If students are taking the ACT or SAT, they should also bring required identification (see third bullet above under “In the weeks preceding test day” above).

√  Several weeks after testing

Students receive an e-mail notifying them that their long-range academic plan, including test scores, NUMATS percentiles and interpretive information, is available to them in their password-protected, online MYCTD Toolbox account. If students provided their school or district's name or NUMATS ID number during registration, this plan is also available to that school or district.

√  About four to six weeks after testing

Students receive an official score report in the mail from the testing agency.

√  March

Eligible students receive information about CTD's summer and online programs. Visit the online MYCTD Toolbox for a newly updated version of CTD's Educational Program Guide. After logging in, click on the NUMATS Info Tab and scroll down to Section 7 – Access Programs.

√  April-May

NUMATS recognition certificates are mailed. Schools or districts may recognize NUMATS participants in honors assemblies.

√  May-September

NUMATS Award Ceremony on Northwestern University's Evanston campus, and state award ceremonies are held for top scorers. 

Preparing for Test Day

Log in to the online MYCTD Toolbox, click on the NUMATS Info tab and scroll down through the various sections to find out what you need to know about the testing process. Be sure to

√  Review the NUMATS Student Guide in Section 2 – Prepare for the Test
√  Take your practice test in Section 2 – Prepare for the Test
√  Print out and complete the Student ID Form (ACT and SAT only) in Section 3 – Day of the Test; students in grade 9 taking SAT must have a photo ID.

Day of Test

On Your Test Day Take

√  Admission ticket sent to you by the testing agency (or testing agency registration number for ACT or SAT)
√  Completed ACT Student ID Form or SAT Student ID Form; SAT Grade 9 students must take photo ID
√  Two sharpened pencils with good erasers
√  An approved calculator (see test preparation materials).

Inclement Weather on Test Day

Listen to a local radio or television station that normally carries announcements of school closings in your area to find out if your test center is closed. Do not attempt to travel to the test center if conditions are dangerous.

√  EXPLORE

If no information is available from local media, you may call ACT Customer Services on the day of your scheduled test (319/337-1369). Test center closings will also be posted on the website at www.act.org/explore/ests/resched.html.

If your test center is closed due to inclement weather, ACT will notify you by mail and/or phone about a rescheduled test date. If you do not receive written notification by the Thursday after the original test date, call ACT Customer Services (319/337-1369).

If your test center stays open and the test is given but you are unable to travel to the test center due to inclement weather, call ACT Customer Services (319/337-1369) during the week after the test date to discuss your options.

√  ACT

Check ACT's website for test center cancellations by visiting www.actstudent.org/faq/answers/badweather.html. If conditions are dangerous, do not attempt to travel to the test center, even if your test center remains open. Call ACT Registration (319/337-1270) during the week after the test date to discuss your options.

If your test center is closed due to inclement weather, there will be an announcement and the test will be rescheduled. Visit www.actstudent.org/faq/answers/badweather.html to find your rescheduled test date. ACT will also notify you by mail or e-mail about a rescheduled test date.

√  SAT

The SAT Program posts test center closings on their website at https://sat.collegeboard.org/register/sat-test-center-closings beginning a few days before each test date. If a makeup date or alternate test center information has been confirmed, that information will also be included. During inclement weather, students should check the website on Friday night and also on Saturday morning before going to the test center.

Illness on Test Day

Do not report to your test center if you feel that your illness might (1) be contagious, (2) distract other students during the test, or (3) affect your ability to concentrate on the test.

√  EXPLORE

Call ACT Customer Services (319/337-1369) as soon as possible to discuss your options.

√  ACT

For information about what to do if you miss your test date, visit ACT's website at www.actstudent.org/faq/answers/missedtest.html.

√  SAT

For information about what to do if you miss your test date, visit SAT's website at https://sat.collegeboard.org/register/registration-changes.

Rescheduling the Test Date

NUMATS students who are unable to test on the date for which they registered may be able to reschedule for a later test date. See Dates & Fees for additional test dates but please do not register again. Instead, call the testing agency as soon as possible to reschedule for a later test date. You will be charged a rescheduling fee by the testing agency. Tests must be rescheduled for the current academic year.

√  EXPLORE – 319/337-1369 (Final EXPLORE test date is February 21, 2015.)
√  ACT – 319/337-1270 (Final ACT test date is June 13, 2015.)
√  SAT – 866/756-7346 (Final SAT test date is June 6, 2015.)

Because NUMATS provides families with access to the many resources of the online MYCTD Toolbox regardless of whether students test or not, we cannot refund the NUMATS fee or carry it over to the next NUMATS (academic/school) year.

Award Ceremonies

NUMATS students in grades 3 through 9 who have the highest scores (approximately 1% to 2% of all NUMATS test takers) on EXPLORE, ACT, and SAT will receive an invitation to an award ceremony sponsored by Center for Talent Development (CTD). The ceremony will be held on the campus of Northwestern University in Evanston, Illinois on Saturday, September 12, 2015.

In addition to the NUMATS award ceremony sponsored by CTD, award ceremonies may be held for the highest scorers in some states. This information for 2015 will be posted as it is made available.

State

Date

Location

Illinois

August 23, 2014

Illinois Math and Science Academy, Aurora

Indiana

May 19, 2014

Indiana Academy for Science, Mathematics, and Humanities, Ball State University, Muncie

Michigan

September 13, 2014

Michigan State University, East Lansing

Minnesota

May 31, 2014

Hamline University, St Paul

Wisconsin

August 2, 2014

The Wisconsin Institutes for Discovery, University of Wisconsin-Madison

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