The SHSAT, or Specialized High Schools Admissions Test, is well-known among students in New York City. It is a standardized exam that permits students to apply to the city’s most elite high schools, all eight of which are very competitive and allow them to access high-quality education and inspire them to achieve their goals.
The exam will test verbal and mathematical reasoning skills, understanding of specific social studies and scientific ideas, and the capacity to solve issues utilizing writing skills. The City of New York Department of Education administers the test each spring as part of the application process for highly competitive admission to eight specialized public high schools in the city.
These public high schools have a different application procedure from the standard high school application and are highly selective. The SHSAT is the only criterion for admission to these prestigious high schools; therefore, being well-prepared for the exam is essential. Students should start studying for the test as soon as possible. Many resources are available to students, including workbooks, SHSAT tutors, online classes, in-person classes, and help from their schools. It’s important for students to take advantage of these resources.
Why do students take the SHSAT?
The SHSAT is a test that students in New York City take to gain admission to the Department of Education’s eight exclusive and highly ranked high schools. Many students, particularly those from low-income areas, believe that taking the SHSAT is their most excellent chance of getting into a high school that will help them alter their lives by stressing academics.
According to The New York Times, students’ test results and preferences influence whether institutions will accept them. For example, students who scored well enough to get into Stuyvesant High School but chose Brooklyn Technical High School as their first option would be admitted to Brooklyn Tech.
Specialized high schools in New York City are meant to accommodate the best of the city’s students, nurturing extraordinarily gifted individuals. That is why students must exhibit exceptional intellectual or creative talent to be admitted to these institutions.
What schools require the SHSAT?
The Specialized High Schools Admissions Test or SHSAT is used for admission in the following specialized high schools: Bronx High School of Science (Bronx), Brooklyn Latin School (Brooklyn), High School for Math, Science and Engineering at City College (Manhattan), Brooklyn Technical High School (Brooklyn), Queens High School for the Sciences at York College (Queens), Staten Island Technical High School (Staten Island), and Stuyvesant High School.
According to a New York State legislation called the Hecht-Calandra Act, this exam is the only method these colleges can utilize to decide admittance. Specialized high schools are similar to regular high schools, except that admittance to specialized high schools is based on the SHSAT score. Non-specialized high schools admit students depending on other factors such as their past academic performance or where they live.
The remaining specialized high schools, such as Fiorello H. LaGuardia High School of Music, Art, and Performing Arts, admit students based on an audition or portfolio rather than an examination. In terms of eligibility, students must reside in one of New York City’s five boroughs to take the SHSAT.
What is on the SHSAT?
The SHSAT assesses both English and mathematics grammar and aptitude. The examination will last 180 minutes. It is suggested that each segment be divided into 90 minutes; nonetheless, students can divide the time however they like. The portions aren’t separated by anything. During the test, electronic calculators and other calculation aids are not permitted.
There are 57 multiple choice questions in the English language ability section, with 9 to 19 revising questions and 6 to 7 nonfiction and fiction passages totaling 46 to 48 questions.
There are also multiple-choice questions for the mathematics section, amounting to 52 questions, and five grid-in questions, covering various mathematical topics such as basic arithmetic, algebra, factoring, substitution, geometry, word problems, logic, etc.
In terms of test results, the total number of correct answers, generally known as the raw score, is translated into a scaled score using a method kept private by the Department of Education and differs every year.
A student’s status is determined by this scaled score, an integer between 200 and 700. The scaled score does not correspond to the raw scores in any way. Furthermore, the cut-off scores for each school fluctuate year to year, based on the number of unfilled spots in each institution and the candidates’ performance.
When do students take the SHSAT?
In 2008, around 29,000 students took the exam, with 6,108 being accepted into one of the high schools as a product of their performance. This exam is taken by over 30,000 students each year.
In most cases, the test is open to all eighth and ninth-grade students in New York City; however, eighth-graders make up the bulk of those who apply. We don’t suggest waiting until 9th grade to take the exam since there are fewer slots for entering 10th students in the schools, and the SHSAT cut-off scores for 9th graders tend to be substantially higher.
Some schools, such as Stuyvesant and Bronx Science, may only have 5 to 10 seats available for entering 10th graders each year. In contrast, Brooklyn Technical High School, which has the most students, may only have 20 to 30 seats available, depending on the year.
Furthermore, students must select up to eight institutions they desire to attend and rank them in order of choice on an application portal before the exam day. Students are notified of their results in March.
From top to lowest, all SHSAT exam takers are rated. Students are subsequently assigned to their first-choice Specialized High School in the order in which they applied until all remaining seats have been filled. Your middle school guidance counselor is the only place you may register for the SHSAT. If you inform your guidance counselor that you intend to take the test, they will provide you with an admittance ticket.
Those who get offers must determine whether or not to join the institution in September by the middle of March. The test is created and assessed independently for the New York City Department of Education by American Guidance Service, a Pearson Education company.