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What’s on the CTBS ™ Test?

What’s on the CTBS ™ Test?

posted by Karen Quinn, The Testing Mom - March 26th, 2015

CTBS test

Lots of parents in Canada are taken by surprise when they learn that their little one will be taking the CTBS ™ Test, also known as the Canadian Test of Basic Skills.™ This test, which is administered to kids between kindergarten and 12th grade, is used to qualify students for gifted and other advanced programs.

If your child will be taking the CTBS test, the first step is to find out which subtests they will be taking. This varies depending on what grade they are in. Students in kindergarten through the 3rd grade will encounter questions for reading, word analysis, language, vocabulary, sources of information, listening, science, and three math subtests (math problems, math concepts, and math computations).

By contrast, kids in 3rd through 8th grade will see questions for capitalization, spelling, punctuation, vocabulary, reading comprehension, usage and expression, maps and diagrams, science, reference materials, and, again, three types of math subtests (math concepts and estimation, math computation, and math problem solving and data interpretation).

To get your child ready for the CTBS test it’s best to start as early as you possibly can. As soon as you find out that your child will be taking the test it’s important to start rounding up the materials you’ll use to get them prepared. Use workbooks, online practice questions, and other materials so that your child gets a variety of resources to work with. This will ensure that your child doesn’t get burned out or bored while preparing.

If your child struggles with practice questions for the CTBS test, start with questions below their grade level and work your way up to their current grade level. This will help build their confidence and alleviate any of the anxiety that they’re bound to feel as the CTBS test draws closer.

For more information on the CTBS test visit

Canadian Test of Basic Skills™ – CTBS™ is a trademark of Nelson Education, or its affiliate(s), or its licensors. is not affiliated with nor related to Nelson Education or its affiliates (“Nelson Education”). Nelson Education does not sponsor or endorse any product, nor have products or services been reviewed, certified, or approved by Nelson Education. Trademarks referring to specific test providers are used by for nominative purposes only and such trademarks are solely the property of their respective owners.

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