Blog home

How Do I Get Ready for the ITBS ® Test?

How Do I Get Ready for the ITBS ® Test?

posted by Karen Quinn, The Testing Mom - January 20th, 2015

preparing for itbs test

Have you just found out that your child will be taking the ITBS ® test? If you’re like a lot of other parents the thought of your child taking a new test that you’re not familiar with can be extremely anxiety-provoking. Just thinking about the test and wondering how to prepare can produce high levels of stress, stress that can rub off on your child and negatively affect their score.
The Iowa Test of Basic Skills ® is an academic test commonly given to kids in grades kindergarten through 8th grade. No matter your child’s age, if they’re taking the ITBS test they should be prepared for a challenging exam. To learn more about what’s on the test, visit
If your child is taking the test, don’t panic. Don’t make practicing for the exam more complicated than it needs to be. Follow these steps to ensure that your child is properly prepared for the test both academically and mentally:

  • Find out exactly when your child will take the test. If you’re able to choose a time, pick one that you know will suit your child’s natural clock (so if your child is a morning person, select a time slot in the morning).
  • Find out the subtests that will be given for the test. Quite possibly, your child will be given the full ITBS test. However, depending on your school district, it’s possible that they’ll give a modified version of the test that only incorporates certain subtests or portions of the test.
  • Once you know what your child will face on the test, set up a study strategy. First, decide the materials that you’ll use to prepare your child. It’s a good idea to use a mix of workbooks, worksheets, online games, and more lighthearted materials like board games and mobile apps that build the same skills but in a more fun, interactive way.
  • Set up a study strategy that eases your child into the process of preparing for the ITBS test. Start off slow, with 5 to 10 minutes of practice per day. And begin with easy questions a few grades below your child’s current grade, so that they are eased into the process of getting ready and don’t get overwhelmed or discouraged by what can be very difficult material.


Iowa Tests of Basic Skills® (ITBS®) is a registered trademark of Riverside Publishing, a Houghton Mifflin Company, or their affiliate(s), or their licensors. is not affiliated with nor related to Houghton Mifflin Company or its affiliates (“Houghton Mifflin”). Houghton Mifflin does not sponsor or endorse any product, nor have products or services been reviewed, certified, or approved by Houghton Mifflin. Trademarks referring to specific test providers are used by for nominative purposes only and such trademarks are solely the property of their respective owners.

Share this article

Tell us about your experiences

Need help? - Contact Support