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Literacy and Numeracy Test for Initial Teacher Education Students

Strong literacy and numeracy skills are an essential requirement in order to be an effective classroom teacher. To ensure that teacher education students have the high level of personal literacy and numeracy skills required of teachers, the Australian Government has recently introduced the Literacy and Numeracy Test for initial teacher education (ITE) students.

The test is a single, national instrument designed to assess elements of an individual’s literacy and numeracy skills and will be used to demonstrate that ITE graduates are in the top 30 per cent of the population for literacy and numeracy.

The test will be available for graduates of ITE programs from 16 May 2016. All South Australian students commencing an ITE program after 1 January 2017 will be required to pass the test prior to graduation. For current ITE students this is not a mandatory requirement in South Australia.  However, graduates are encouraged to sit and meet the standard of the test for the following reasons:

  • It will enhance your employment prospects (some employers in Australia may require completion of the test)
  • It promotes public confidence
  • It will enhance your employment opportunities internationally.

For further information contact the institution at which you are currently studying.

Frequently Asked Questions

All South Australian initial teacher education (ITE) student teachers who first enrol in a program from 1 January 2017 will be required to pass the test before graduation.

The Teachers Registration Board of South Australia understands that the test is a retrospective requirement and that on enrolment current ITE students did not have a requirement to sit this test. Therefore, while we encourage all currently enrolled ITE student teachers to take the test, in fairness, it will not be mandated for this group of student teachers.

In 2011 Australia’s Education Minsters agreed to implement the Accreditation of Initial Teacher Education Programs in Australia: Standards and Procedures, which outline that ITE entrants will have personal literacy and numeracy skills broadly equivalent to those of the top 30 per cent of the adult population.

 

In their 2015 report, Action Now: Classroom Ready Teachers, the Teacher Education Ministerial Advisory Group recommended the introduction of a national literacy and numeracy test for ITE students.

 

All Education Ministers then agreed to amend the Accreditation of Initial Teacher Education Programs in Australia: Standards and Procedures to make the national test the means through which higher education providers confirm that, before graduation, students possess levels of personal literacy and numeracy broadly equivalent to the top 30 per cent of the adult population.

 

You can read more about accreditation of ITE programs on the Australian Institute for Teaching and School Leadership website.

 

National and international literacy and numeracy frameworks were used to establish the level of competence which is broadly equivalent to the top 30 per cent of the population. This included the Australian Core Skills Framework which is the pre-eminent description of generic adult literacy and numeracy in Australia.

 

The test was trialled in 2014 with results benchmarked by experts to determine the mark required to meet the established standard. 

Higher education providers will provide guidance to students about when in their course they will need to sit the test. If you enrol in an ITE course from 1 January 2017 you will need to talk to your higher education provider for further details about when you will be required to sit the test.

ITE students will pay to sit the test. The literacy and numeracy components together (full test) cost $185. The literacy component is $92.50 and the numeracy component is $92.50.

No. The fee for sitting the test must be paid in full on registration for the test.

 

For more information on the test visit www.studentsfirst.gov.au/teacher-quality

ITE students who sat and passed the test in 2015 do not have to re-sit the test.