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Criterion-Referenced Competency Tests

The Criterion-Referenced Competency Tests (CRCT) were a set of tests[1][2] administered at public schools in the state of Georgia that are designed to test the knowledge of first through eighth graders in reading, English/language arts (ELA), and mathematics, and third through eighth graders additionally in science and social studies.

Georgia law, as amended by the A+ Education Reform Act of 2000, requires that all students in grades one through eight take the CRCT in the content areas of reading, English/language arts, and mathematics. Students in grades three through eight are also assessed in science and social studies. The CRCT only assesses the content standards outlined in the Common Core Georgia Performance Standards which is the curriculum that Georgia teachers are required to teach.

The CRCT was implemented in spring 2000. That year, summative, end-of-year assessments in reading, English/language arts, and mathematics were administered in grades four, six, and eight. Assessments in science and social studies (grades three through eight) were administered for the first time in spring 2002. Additionally, assessments in reading, English/language arts, and mathematics were administered in grades one, two, three, five, and seven in spring 2002.[3]

Students in grades 3, 5, and 8 were required to pass the CRCT to be promoted to the next grade. Bill HB501,[4] a new bill currently circulating in the Georgia General Assembly, would also require first and second grade students to pass the CRCT to move to the next grade.[5]

The state also included Lexile measures with scores for students in grades 3-8.[6] A Lexile measure can be used to match readers with targeted text and monitor growth in reading ability.

The CRCT was retired in the 2013-2014 school year. It was replaced by the Georgia Milestones Assessment System, which contains thought-provoking questions, norm-referenced items, online administration, and a writing component.[1][2]



Students received a report during the summer that tells them their scale score and their accuracy for all of the sections assessed on the CRCT. The scale score was used to determine if the student exceeds, meets, or does not meet state standards. If the student scores above an 850, he/she is considered to be exceeding the standards in that subject area. If the student's scale score is between 800-849 (inclusive), he/she is considered to be meeting the standards in that subject area. The state considers scores below 800 as not meeting standards. Students could have also determine their accuracy on any part of the test because their score reports show the number of questions they got right and the number of total questions that were administered. The highest score varies between subjects, but ranges from 850 to 980.


see Atlanta Public Schools cheating scandal for more information.

In July 2011, an investigation uncovered that 178 teachers from the Atlanta area had been found to be cheating from as early as 2001 by falsifying test results.[7] Aside from the teachers, 38 principals were linked to the scandal either by directly participating in the changing of wrong answers or allowing the changes to be made when they knew, or had the responsibility to know, what was going on.[8]


  1. ^ a b "Criterion-Referenced Competency Tests (CRCT)". Retrieved 2015-04-26.
  2. ^ a b "Georgia Milestones Assessment System". Retrieved 2015-04-26.
  3. ^ Education, Georgia Department of (2005–2008). "Georgia Department of Education — Assessment: Criterion-Referenced Competency Tests". Archived from the original on 2009-03-31. Retrieved 2009-04-25.
  4. ^ Austin, Rick; Benton, Reese, Kaiser, & Carter (2009-02-19). House Bill 501. Atlanta, GA: Georgia General Assembly.CS1 maint: Multiple names: authors list (link)
  5. ^ Lewis, Jon (2009-02-23). "New CRCT Requirements?". WSB Radio. Cox Radio, Inc. Archived from the original on 2010-02-04. Retrieved 2009-06-21.
  6. ^ "Assessments by State". MetaMetrics, Inc. Archived from the original on 5 September 2012. Retrieved 28 April 2010.
  7. ^ "Atlanta Teachers in Scandal Told to Quit, or Else". NPR. June 15, 2011. Retrieved 15 July 2011.
  8. ^ "Teachers implicated in Atlanta scandal told to resign or be fired". CNN. July 15, 2011. Retrieved 15 July 2011.

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