What is MAP?

Measures of Academic Progress (MAP) is a state-aligned computerized adaptive assessment program that provides teachers with the information they need to improve teaching and learning and make student-focused, data-driven decisions. Students in grades one through eleven are tested three times per year in math and reading. Educators use the growth and achievement data from MAP to develop targeted instructional strategies and to plan school improvement.


  • Is not an accountability test
  • Generates test questions based on student responses
  • Reports student results in RIT scores (see back page)
  • Gives immediate results
  • Is aligned to Iowa Core
  • Measures growth over time
  • Provides information used to target individual instruction

What is a RIT Score?

Student MAP testing results are reported in RIT scores (short for Rasch Unit). A RIT score is an estimation of a students instructional level and also measures student progress or growth in school. You may have a chart in your home on which you mark your child’s height at certain times, such as on his birthday. This is a growth chart to show how much he or she has grown from one year to the next. MAP assessments do the same sort of thing, except they measure your student’s growth in mathematics and reading. The RIT scale is an equal-interval scale much like feet and inches on a yardstick. It is used to chart your child’s academic growth from year to year. This type of score increases the value of the tests as a tool to improve student learning because it enables teachers to pinpoint what students have learned and what students are ready to learn.

Understanding the RIT Score

The charts show national median RIT scores in a typical school district. You may use these charts to help determine if your student is performing at, above, or below grade level compared to students across the nation. It is important to understand that the MAP test is one test at one point in time. It does not measure intelligence or a student’s capacity for learning. When making important decisions about students, school staff will consider the MAP test results along with other data such as classroom performance, other test scores, and input from parents and teachers.

Growth Over Time

We expect RIT scores to increase over time. Typically, younger students show more growth in one year than older students. Students who test above grade level often show less growth. Sometimes RIT scores may decline from one test to the next. One low test score is not cause for immediate concern. Like adults, students have good and bad days and their test results do not always indicate what they know. Students’ attitudes toward the test can also affect their score. Therefore, growth over time is a better measure of student learning. Parents and guardians should become comfortable with the understanding that individuals will grow at different rates. Anticipated growth rates for each student are based on national norms and should be viewed as “typical” growth, not expected growth. Teachers and principals have participated in training to learn what the MAP test results mean and how to best utilize the results. Our goal is for teachers to use the data to differentiate and adjust instruction so that all students grow at levels appropriate for each child.

When are the tests given?
Three times per year
August/September December/January April/May
(Fall) (Winter) (Spring)


How are tests given?
On the computer under adult supervision in the school setting? The assessment adjusts to a student’s skill level so that each student takes an individualized test.



Annotated Reports – This document contains various samples of many of the reports available to your staff.


Normative Data – This document shows typical scores for the 50th percentile in the RIT Scale Norms Study and gives educators starting information for looking at class data.


Parent Toolkit – This document helps parents by providing term definitions, frequently asked questions, tips and web site resources.


Student Progress Report – Quick reference report with details on the student report.


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