View the official SMCPS Facebook pageView the official SMCPS Twitter feedView the offical SMCPS YouTube channelView official Instagram Watch our live-streamed broadcastsAccess the Home Access Center login pageFreqently asked questions and general website information
View the official SMCPS Facebook pageView the official SMCPS Twitter feedView the offical SMCPS YouTube channelView official Instagram Watch our live-streamed broadcastsAccess the Home Access Center login pageFreqently asked questions and general website information

Access (for English Language Learners)

When: January - February

Who: Students in grades Kindergarten-12

Description: ACCESS is an English language proficiency assessment given to those students in kindergarten through 12th grade who have been identified as English language learners (ELLs). 

Advanced Placement Tests (AP)

AP exams are administered in May.

AP exams are college level courses/exams administered to students in the AP courses to earn advanced standing or credit at most high schools and universities. 

Who: Students in grades 9 - 12

More information on AP courses can be found here.

American College Testing (ACT)

The ACT assesses student academic readiness for colleges and universities and is used for admission by colleges and universities. It tests knowledge of English, Mathematics, Reading, and Science. The writing portion is optional. 

When: September, October, December, February, April, and June.

Information about the ACT can be found here.

Who: Students in grades 11 -12

Armed Services Vocational Aptitude Battery (ASVAB)

The ASVAB is a test for high school students taken when they are in 10th, 11th, and/or 12th grade. Although the ASVAB may sound like a military test alone, the ASVAB is a multiple-aptitude battery that measures developed abilities and helps predict future academic and occupational success. The ASVAB is a test that consists of eight individual tests, including general science, arithmetic, reading, word knowledge, paragraph comprehension, mathematics knowledge, electronics information, auto and shop information, and mechanical comprehension. The ASVAB test is not just an evaluation of those interested in the military, but it is also for students interested in learning more about their abilities and what occupations and careers they might consider pursuing in the near future.

Kindergarten Readiness Assessment (KRA)

When: September

Who: Kindergarten Students

Description: The KRA is an assessment that combines age-appropriate, standardized performance tasks that measure specific skills, as well as focused observations of children's work and play to determine what each student knows and is able to do when entering kindergarten. The assessment measures readiness in four developmental domains. These domains are social foundations, physical well-being and motor development, language and literacy, and mathematics. The KRA provides a snapshot of kindergarten readiness levels, making it possible to confidently determine if entering students have the skills and behaviors needed to succeed in kindergarten. It also highlights what early childhood educators, families, and communities can do to improve children’s readiness.

The Maryland Comprehensive Assessment Program (MCAP)

Who: Students in Grades 3-10.

When: April-June

Description: The Maryland Comprehensive Assessment Program (MCAP) covers state and federally-mandated assessments in English Language Arts/Literacy, Mathematics, Science, Government, and Kindergarten Readiness.  MCAP also includes Alternate Assessments for select students. 

Students participate in required tests in four subject areas:

  • 3rd - 8th grade math and Algebra/Data Analysis (or Geometry or Algebra II)
  • 3rd - 8th grade English/Language Arts and English 10
  • 8th grade social studies and American Government (high school)
  • 5th and 8th grade science and Life Science/Biology (high school)

Assessment requirements for graduation:

The following courses have assessment requirements for graduation:  Algebra/Data Analysis (or other high school math course including Geometry and/or Algebra II), English 10, American Government, and Biology. Students must participate in or pass (depending on the school year) the course associated assessments in order to fulfil graduation requirements.

Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, students who passed assessment associated courses in the 2019-2020 school year received waivers from the course assessment requirements for graduation. 

For courses taken in the 2020-2021 and 2021-2022 school years, students must both pass the assessed course(s) and participate in the associated assessment(s).

End of Course Exams (EOCs)

Starting in the 2023-2024 school year, EOCs will comprise a percentage of a student's final grade in the assessed courses.  For more information on EOCs, please visit the Maryland State Department of Education End of Course Exams web page. 

Maryland High School Assessment For American Government (HSA)

When: April- June

Who: High school students upon completion of American Government course

Description: HSA is an end-of-course test that measures progress toward Maryland’s High School Core Learning Goals (CLGs) in American Government. All students enrolled in the American Government course are required to take the HSA upon completion of the course.

Maryland Integrated Science Assessment (MISA)

When: March - June  (depending on grade level)

Who: Students in grades 5, 8, and high school

Description: The MISA measures student achievement on the Maryland State Science Standards (MSS) in grade 5 (testing content from grades 3, 4, and 5), grade 8 (testing content from grades 6, 7 and 8), and high school (testing content from a life science/Biology course).  


When: October 12, 2022

Who: High School Students in Grades 9-11

Description: The Preliminary SAT, also known as the PSAT or PSAT/NMSQT® (National Merit Scholarship Qualifying Test), is a practice version of the SAT exam. Students can take the PSAT once per year, and it is offered free of charge to all SMCPS students in grades 9-11.  Students who earn a high score on the PSAT/NMSQT as 11th graders could qualify to receive a National Merit Scholarship. More information about PSAT/NMSQT can be found here.

Scholastic Aptitude Test (SAT)

The SAT assesses student academic readiness for college and is used for admission by colleges and universities. It tests knowledge of Critical Reading, Writing, and Mathematics. 

School Day SAT for high school juniors - March 22, 2023

As part of a comprehensive strategy to ensure access and opportunity for all students, St. Mary's County Public Schools (SMCPS) provides important college readiness examinations to all students.  SMCPS is proud to be able to offer the SAT test, free of charge, to every junior in our school system during the school day on March 23, 2022. The SAT is not only used as an admission standard by many colleges and universities, but it also connects students with available scholarship funds. If students have already taken an SAT test, it never hurts to take the test again.  Many colleges now "superscore" which allows students to submit their highest sub-scores from multiple SAT tests. SAT scores do not expire, so even if students are not planning on enrolling in college immediately, they should participate in the test so that they have an SAT score available if they should need it in the future.

More information about the School Day SAT can be found here.

Other SAT Administrations

Student may also register to take the SAT on certain Saturdays throughout the year at various sites.

When: October, November, December, January, March, May, and June

Who: Students in grades 11 and 12

More SAT information can be found here.