ACARA news, August 2018

Assessment activities in schools

17 August 2018

There are a number of assessment activities occurring in schools around Australia. These include:


30 July – 7 September. About 540,000 students across 72 countries.

Run in Australia by ACER, the Programme for International Student Assessment (PISA) is a triennial international survey that aims to evaluate education systems worldwide by testing the skills and knowledge of 15-year-old students. Find out more about PISA.   

School readiness testing

20 August – 12 October. Number of schools / number of students: final numbers determined by states and territories.

Schools intending to undertake NAPLAN online in 2019 can confirm their readiness through school readiness testing (SRT). SRT is an opportunity to test school technical infrastructure, test administration processes, procedures and logistics, connectivity, number of devices and bandwidth issues.  SRT will use the 2018 assessment platform and will include an omnibus test that contain numeracy, reading and conventions of language items.

NAP sample (science literacy)

15 October – 2 November. Number of schools: 560. Number of students: 11,200.

The purpose of the test is to inform schools, educators and the community about the levels of achievement for science literacy among Year 6 and Year 10 students. All participating schools will receive reports summarising their students’ results, with a national public report of the outcomes released in 2019. A rigorous selection process is used to ensure the sample represents Australia’s Years 6 and 10 cohorts. The assessments are run by ACARA.

Platform readiness testing

22 October – 29 November. Number of schools / number of students: final numbers determined by states/territories.

States and territories will select schools to participate in platform readiness testing (PRT). PRT is a test of the performance of the NAPLAN Online platform and post-test processes, which includes monitoring, reporting and quality assurance. It follows on from the school readiness test. PRT is not a test of school readiness or of students’ literacy and numeracy skills.

Further statement from ACARA CEO - NAPLAN 2018

13 August 2018

A further statement on NAPLAN 2018 results from ACARA CEO, Robert Randall:

ACARA will today provide states and territories with the NAPLAN data and report templates to enable them to commence the process of production of individual student reports this week. Parents should expect to receive reports later this month or in September depending on each state or territory administration authority.

NAPLAN assessments provide valuable information on what a student knows and can do. The assessment provides a snapshot of a child’s achievement at a point in time and, as always, information contained in the student reports should be considered together with school-based assessments and reports.

NAPLAN is in transition from 2018 to 2020, moving from a paper test to an online test to provide more accurate and precise information about what students know and can do.

Parents, teachers and schools can rely on the information and be confident it is valid and comparable regardless of test format.

ACARA statement: NAPLAN 2018 results

10 August 2018

ACARA welcomes the further consideration given to NAPLAN reporting at a meeting with the Australian Education Senior Officials Committee (AESOC) today. Following the recent detailed work, there is strong confidence in the integrity of the 2018 results. 

It was agreed that ACARA will, next week, provide states and territories with the data to enable them to commence the process of issuing student reports.

It was confirmed that parents and teachers can expect to receive the student reports within the usual reporting period of August to mid-September.

Detailed analysis and a national report will be provided separately, as in previous years.

*UPDATED* ACARA statement: NAPLAN 2018 results

08 August 2018
Updated at 5pm AEST:

ACARA welcomes the consideration given to NAPLAN data and reporting in discussion with the Australian Education Senior Officials Committee (AESOC) today.

As NAPLAN is in a period of transition, and this is the first year where students completed either a pen and paper test or an online test, extra attention is being given to reviewing the data and how the results compare between the paper and online testing.

ACARA will work with AESOC to have reports to schools and parents this month.


In response to media reports today, ACARA CEO, Robert Randall, has issued the following statement:

Parents, schools and educators should be assured that the 2018 NAPLAN results are on track to be released soon. ACARA is preparing to release the results and expects this will be within coming days.

Contrary to media reports, the 2018 results are not delayed. In previous years, results were released in mid-August. As in previous years, the normal process of working with education authorities in states and territories to review the data prior to release has been followed.

As this is the first year of online assessment, extra attention has been given to reviewing the data and ensuring it is comparable with previous years and between online and paper test modes.

ACARA’s data analysts and measurement advisory experts have advised the data are valid and comparable. ACARA understands how important NAPLAN data are for the schools and families that use the results to ensure their students and children are supported in their learning. ACARA is committed to ensuring NAPLAN is a tool that helps to help improve the learning of all young Australians.