Iowa Algebra Readiness Assessment (IARA)
Iowa Testing Programs began offering the IARA online in February 2011. The IARA is $2.75 for each student tested.
The IARA is intended to help teachers and counselors make more informed decisions regarding
the initial placement of students in the secondary mathematics curriculum. Any decision
regarding "readiness" is extremely difficult. While the recommendations of current and
former teachers must be given great weight, additional information about mathematics
achievement and foundational knowledge is also important. The IARA provides this
information in an easy-to-administer format so that determinants of algebra readiness are
well informed and timely.
The IARA is $2.75 for each student tested.
Using both the Standards from the National Council of Teachers of Mathematics and the
Common Core State Standards as guides, a pool of items relevant to the curriculum of
Algebra I was developed and field tested. On the basis of the field test, items were
selected and assembled into the online edition of the IARA. The IARA consists of 60 items
administered over approximately 40 minutes.
Test Materials and Scoring
The IARA is administered via computer. Raw scores, standard scores, and national percentile
ranks are reported in four areas. The four areas are:
Pre-Algebraic Number Skills & Concepts: Demonstrating computational facility and problem-solving skills
Interpreting Mathematical Information: Understanding new material presented in graphs or text
Representing Relationships: Finding formulas for numerical relationships
Using Symbols: Understanding the nature and use of symbols
In addition, raw scores are reported for the following domains of the Common Core State Standards.
Expressions & Equations
Statistics & Probability
Ratios & Proportional Relationships
The Number System
As stated earlier, information on student performance is intended to assist educators
in (1) determining the algebra readiness of students, (2) determining initial placement of
students in the secondary mathematics curriculum, (3) identifying student strengths and
weaknesses, and (4) evaluating instructional programs.