CogAT Scores: Understand Test Results

CogAT scoring is based on your child’s age (not grade level). Your child will receive what’s called an SAS, or “Standard Age Score,” which compares your child’s score against other children in the same age range. The highest SAS that a child can receive on the CogAT is 160, while 100 is considered to be an average score.

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Here are all the steps used to calculate a child’s unique test score:

  • Raw Score. This is total number of questions answered correctly; however, incorrect answers do not cause points to be deducted from the overall raw score.
  • Universal Scale Score (USS). After the Raw Score is determined, it is converted to a normalized standard score known as the Universal Scale Score. There are separate USS scores for each of the test’s three verbal, nonverbal and quantitative reasoning skills subsections (also called “batteries”). The Composite USS is determined by averaging these three different scores.
  • Standard Age Score (SAS). The Standard Age Score has a maximum possible score of 160; the average score is 100.
  • Percentile Rank (PR). School districts use this number to compare students that share the same age and grade level. A percentile rank of 80 means that child’s score was higher than 80% of students who took the same test. The average percentile rank is 50.
  • Stanine (S). A stanine is a very broad, simplified score ranging from 1 (lowest) to 9 (highest possible), and it’s normalized for the child’s age and grade level.

CogAT Score Report
Each stanine is made up of a range of percentile ranks. The table below shows the percentile ranks that formulate each stanine and the associated ability level.

StaninePercentile RankDescription
996-99Very High
889-95Above Average
777-88Above Average
311-22Below Average
24-10Below Average
11-3Very Low

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Tell us about your experiences

74 Responses


You noted that the highest possible SAS score on the Cogat is 160. How can one explain a child scoring higher than 160?

Hongjin Qiu

My kid has a score of 9E(v-) for the second grade. How is the explaination of the score? High or low? She is 8 years old.


go to for interpretation, 9E means that there might be an error or there is an extreme difference between verbal, nonverbal, etc. 9 is the highest achievement level with 9A being the highest possible

Agnes Trzesniowski

My daughter’s score is 7C(V+).
May you please help me interpret.


My child scored 8A. Please help me to interpret that. Thank you.


Do you take into account personality and interests, likes/dislikes? Ability to communicate with adults and other children? Passions? Empathy? This is the most cookie cutter approach to understanding a child’s intellect that I’ve ever seen.

Hi Julie – the CogAT test doesn’t assess the child’s EQ (emotional intelligence). It’s based solely on the cognitive ability of the child.


what does it mean when your childs score is unavailable because their birthdate was out of testing range?

edis morales

My kid has a score 4A for the 5 grade, how is the score high or low she is 10 1/2 years old ?


our child got 5E (N+) which is pretty much what we already knew.


I have some questions about the age score. My daughter just took the test, and was 7 years 2 months old at the time. How will this impact her age score? I don’t quite understand how exactly they are coming up with a percentile rank.

For example, if she had a 77 percentile grade score, how does that carry over into an age score? The school says they use whatever is higher between the grade score (2nd) and the age score. We get results in a couple of weeks.

When you get the score, please send them to You are mentioning a score “77% percentile grade score” which we have not heard used for this test previously and we want to insure we provide accurate information. If you could forward or scan and forward the score, we can help interpret those results for you.
Thank you,


My daughter had no score for the Verbal section and no Composite score, but it shows she attempted all 48 questions of the verbal section. What does that mean?

Please reach out to the administrator of this test. This sounds like it could be an error in their scoring.
Thank you,
Team TestingMom


My son has just been accepted into G and T and I am trying to find out what his scores mean.

Primary talent developmental cumulative behavioral scale 63
Cognitive abilities test: verbal/quantitative/nonverbal 95/92/79
Performan ce series reading 73
Performance series math 96

If 100 is average why is he considered G and T if his is 96?

Mike, We discussed this on chat the other day, but 100 is not the average when you are comparing National Percentiles. It would be the very top of the scale. If your child scored in the top 5% of children nationally, then that may be the parameter for your District to accept a student to the Gifted Program. This can vary from school district to school district. Please reach out to your district for more information regarding acceptance scores. Congratulations on your child being accepted!


What composite score qualifies a student as GATE on the COGAT? Or is it individual scores?

Hi Katherine,
Thank you for reaching out to us. This can vary significantly from District to District and we would now know what your school’s cutoff would be. We do recommend reaching out to your School District or GATE administrator for guidance. We see SAS scores from 120 and up and GPR scores of 95 and higher as general guidelines for acceptance, but that is once again, just a guideline.
Thank you,


My daughter was tested this spring at her school. They mailed me her results, but I only got her percentiles. They have marked her as High Ability – General Intellectual – Both English Language Arts & Math. So far the school is having her skip 1st grade and will be offering additional services in reading and math. What else should I look into to help challenge her with these scores?

Verbal – 93 percentile
Nonverbal – 96 percentile
Quantitative – 99 percentile
Composite – 99 percentile

Your child is scoring in the top 1% based on these scores. There is not any real room for improvement. The Composite Score cannot improve to 100%, so I would not make any recommendations as your child scored very well on this test.
Thank you,


Hello, Hoping you can help. My son just took the COGAT test this year in 1st grade. Can you help explain to me the results.

Composite: scaled score 92 31%
Non-Verbal: scaled score 94 35%
Quantitative: scaled score 81 12%
Verbal: scaled score 102 55%

Thank you. appreciate any feedback

Please go to for more information on your child’s scores. You can also reach out to your District or the Administrator of the test for more information on how they graded this test. Your scores do not look “normal” or what we usually see in scoring for this test, so there may be a “custom scale” scoring system at work here.
Thank you,
Team TestingMom


What is the magic formula used to calculate the USS, SAS, and stanines?


Verbal 9————— 99————99
Quantitative 8——— 95————96
Non Verb 7———— 84————86
VQN 9—————– 97————98

??? So where does that leave my daughter?


I don’t get please help. My child tested for gifted and talented and I don’t know how to check it out. Please help because I don’t understand what your saying and how to figure out if she got in or if she didn’t.

Hi Londynn,

I recommend reaching out to your school for score interpretation as well as if she qualified.




My son is Very High, and Above Average. Profile 7B (N+) Can you explain the details regarding the profile score please, Thank you,

Hi Shelley –

Riverside publishing provides a tool where you can input your son’s ability profile and it will give you a profile explanation. It can be accessed at

All the best,



my daughter score 6E(v-)

Hi Dharti,

This score is your child’s Cogat profile. If you will go to the the website, then you can type this in and it will explain what it means.



My daughter show 5A. Could you please explain what is this mean?

Hi Jala

If you will go to the Cogat test publisher’s site, then you can type in the Cogat Profile and find out what this means.

All the best,

Lashonda parker

Stanine score 6 and 5 meaning B or C grade.

Hi Lashonda,

We do not interpret testing scores here but you can use this link from the CogAT publisher’s website to help you understand your child’s test score




My child’s chart does not even have a “Standard Age Score” column. Why is this?

Hi Deborah,

Some schools do not share the standard age score, instead they just give you the required information to inform you whether or not your child has qualified for the program. This could be a raw score, percentile ranking or stanine score.


Hi my daughter is ready for cogat test this February what shall I do ??

Thank you for reaching out to us!

We have a tremendous CogAT section that you can use to prepare your daughter for this challenging test with a paid membership!

All the best,



What does a 9B(V-) mean on a results sheet. Thank you, Amanda

Hi Amanda –

Thank you for reaching out to us!

A stanine score of 9 is the highest possible score on the CogAT, so that is great! For a full breakdown of the score, please click on this link:

All the best,



My grandboy profile is 5B. What does that mean good, bad, or needs improvement? I tried to look it up, but I’m tech-illiterate. Thank You for understanding.

S Kartha

I am a dad who just got my fourth grader daughter’s CoGAT results. She is in the 99th percentile with a stanine of 9A. While we are stunned and happy for her, she is in tears thinking she may have to change schools. She loves her school and is upset about missing her favorite friends and teachers. We are in Minnesota.

What does ‘cluster classroom’ mean? The letter says that she will be placed in a cluster classroom.

Hi S Kartha,

A cluster classroom is a classroom in which students are pulled from their regular class and placed into a new classroom with other students that have similar abilities. The teacher for this cluster classrooms will typically have some advanced training for teaching students of higher abilities, and the curriculum is more complex.



can you help explain my son’s cogat scores?
Verbal 128
quantative 115
composite VQ123
Composite VN 119
Composite QN 112
Composite VQN 119
at the top it states grade 4 level 10?
I know he’s been accepted to GT this next year but would like a clearer understanding of what this test shows, thanks

Hi Sarah,

The Cogat test your son took was for a 4th grader at level 10. The level refers to a number of difficulty. As for the scores, those could be the Raw Scores or the Standard Age Scores. Without seeing the sheet, it is hard to tell what they represent. At the end of the day, these scores were high enough for your son to qualify so congratulations to you both!



Hi – do you know if I can get the COGAT administered privately in NJ?

Natayne wray

I was placed at Vauxhall high because I got 44% in the ability test and I would like to know if that was my correct average


My child’s CogAT test does not show a standard age score. It only has Age stanine and age percentile rank. Is there a way to calculate the standard age score from these values?


What is Cogat I have to take it tomorrow for the first time and I have no absolute clue what it is. BTW i’m in 8th grade

Dennis Calu

I got a 9c overall. What percentile is that. Im in 5th grade

Hi Dennis,

This score is your stanine score. Please use the link below to find out what this score represents.



Hi! we just got my son’s CogAT’s scores. His profile is 9A…
Verbal – 98 age percentile rank
Non-verbal- 92
Composite (VQN) 98
and yet is not in the gifted and talented program at his school. Just wondering what’s the score that is needed to on G and T?

Hi Maria –

Thank you for reaching out to us. Each district has different standards for admission to their gifted program. For more information on what is required by your son’s program, you’ll want to reach out to his teacher or perhaps the counselor at his school.

All the best,



my daughter 7 years old she is 2nd grade she got 89 and 8B. Pls help me understand. Is she passed test?

Hi Yoshe,

These scores are very good! They indicate that your daughter scored higher than 89 and 88% percent of all second graders that have taken the CogAT nationwide in the last year!

There really is no passing or failing on the CogAT test. School districts use the test to assess a child’s readiness for their Gifted and Talented program. Each district requires a different standard. I’ve seen districts accept students with a score as low as the 79th percentile, up to the 98th percentile for other districts.

All the best,


What is the Iowa test?


Hi! this is my first time taking the cogAT test. what’s it about? what do I do?

Hi Tamara –

The CogAT test is a very complex test that measures your child’s abilities in three areas: Verbal, Nonverbal and Quantitative Reasoning. We do have tremendous practice materials with a paid membership for this challenging test.

All the best,


what percentile do you need to get to make it in. do you have to get above a 95 or what.

my scores were
verbal- 84
quantative- 81
non-verbal- 96
and im in the fifth grade
did i get in or not


I would want to know about the gifted test and the sample test papers for cigar

Hi Madhujha,

I’m not sure what you’re asking. Can you please email us at

All the best,



How to find cogat score of my son who attended test in Jan 2021

Hi Harsha –

TestingMom does not provide the CogAT test. We provide preparation materials for many tests, including the CogAT. I would recommend starting with your son’s school. If they cannot assist, I would recommend contacting Riverside Publishing, the test publisher of the CogAT, to see if they can assist.

All the best,



I got this report for my kid .Can you help me to explain this?
Ability Score
District Standard Student Scores
Verbal 80-100 %tile 84%
Quantitative 80-100 %tile 98%
Nonverbal 80-100 %tile 93%

Thank you for reaching out to us!

These are outstanding scores! The percentile represents where your child scored compared to other students in the same grade and age. The verbal score of 84th percentile represents that your child scored higher than 84% of the students that were tested. The same applies for the Quantitative and Nonverbal percentiles.

All the best,



My child is in pre-K and she took the test I’m still a little confused if the bar at the top is her grade or the one at the bottom.


We were only given the total score of 9c for my daughter. Is a 9A, 9B better?


What does Ability Profile 4B(V+) mean?
Thank you

Hi Jetta –

Riverside Insights, the test publisher of the CogAT, provides a great tool where you can input the profile score and it will provide you with a breakdown. It can be accessed here:

All the best,



What does 5A mean

Hi Jaeden –

Riverside Insights, the test publisher of the CogAT, provides a great tool where you can input the profile score and it will provide you with a breakdown. It can be accessed here:

All the best,


Noelene mahon

My child’s score is 7B (V+) – what does that mean? Thank you.


Hello, my scores, unfortunately, did not qualify for the 6th grade gifted program. 🙁
I took the test in the 5th grade, when I was 11.3.
The scores read:
Nonverbal SAS 113
Quantitative SAS 120
Verbal SAS 131
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