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Iowa Algebra Readiness Assessment (IARA)

Iowa Testing Programs began offering the IARA online in February 2011. The IARA is $3.25 for each student tested.

Iowa schools can register for IARA by logging in to ITP Online Tools.



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 $3.25 for each student tested.

Content Description

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.