Frequently Asked Questions

How is this test used in the high school admissions process?

Archbishop Ryan utilizes the HSPT for three purposes: for entrance eligibility, scholarship selection, and course placement. 

How do the HSPT and Independent School Entrance Exam (ISEE) differ?

Every 8th grader who applies to a Diocesan Catholic high school in the Archdiocese of Philadelphia must take the HSPT, while the ISEE is used for admission into independent, non-Catholic schools. Both are admissions assessment tools that test similar abilities and skills, but the HSPT compares each student’s correct score to a national norm (a large group of students of similar age across the U.S.), while the ISEE compares responses to a smaller population of students.

Are accommodations available for students with a service plan, IEP, or a recent evaluation?

Yes,  Archbishop Ryan offers extended time to students with a documented need. When registering for the HSPT, there will be a yes or no question asking whether a student needs accommodations. If indicated yes, upload documentation into the registration portal. All documentation should date no earlier than the 5th grade year, and must be submitted no later than two weeks prior to the test date to allow the Bonaventure Center time to review documentation.

What is the registration process for the HSPT?

Students are required to register for the HSPT using the link above. When registering online, you will receive a confirmation number that should be brought with you the day of the test. If you cannot register online, please call the testing site directly to register. For on-campus testing, any student who walks in on testing day without registering may be turned away if the testing site is already at capacity. Strict capacity restrictions will be enforced at each testing site in order to keep all students and proctors safe. Please note that students may not walk in and request any testing accommodations. If this occurs, the student will either test without accommodations, or be asked to register for another test date, if available.

What is the payment process?

The cost of the HSPT is $40. This fee can be paid online by credit card. The $40 fee covers testing materials, proctors, and sending the reports for scoring. Payment must be received before score reports will be released.

What is needed on testing day?

For those testing in person, students should arrive in uniform with two number two pencils, a water bottle, and a light snack. Those testing online should have a clear workstation, two pencils, and scratch paper. Calculators and other testing aids are not permitted.

Are breaks offered during the testing period?

Brief breaks are offered between the five sections of the test. Students will have one longer break (typically about 5 minutes) where they are allowed to have a light snack, if packed from home.

Are Calculators permitted?

No. Calculators are not permitted for the HSPT.

What if I arrive late?

Late arrivals are not permitted. We advise that students arrive or log-in 15 minutes early. Students who are late will have to reschedule for the integrity of the test.

Can I take the test more than once?

No. The HSPT may be taken only once, and only by 8th grade students. It cannot be repeated under any circumstances. There is a practice test for 7th graders. Visit the scheudling page for more info.

When are score reports sent?

Score reports will be uploaded to your application portal no later than one week from your testing date unless there are complications. A copy will also be mailed to the address used for registration.

What if I don't know the answer to a question on the exam?

Students should answer all questions. You are not penalized for wrong answers. You should aim to work quickly. If you do not know the answer, make your best guess and move on to the next question.

Is there anything else I should know?

Testing can be an anxious, yet exciting experience for students and their parents. STS offers the following tips to best prepare for a successful testing experience:
-Listen to and read the directions for each subtest carefully.
-Pace yourself – time limits are set for each sub-test.Test administrators announce when time is halfway through so students can check their pace. Avoid spending too much time on one item.
-Read each question carefully.
-Work out the problem – Calculators are not permitted for the Mathematics subtest. Use scratch paper or the test booklet to do any figuring.
-Answer every question – If you are unsure of an answer, take your best guess. Your score is determined by the number of items answered correctly; there is no penalty for answering incorrectly.
-Check your work – If there is time left, go back and review your answers. Make sure each item has only one response. Throughout the test, check that the answer you are marking on your answer sheet corresponds to the item number in the test booklet.

How can I prepare for the test?

While many test prep guides, books, and courses are available for purchase, STS is not affiliated with any of these products. Archbishop Ryan offers the 7th Grade practice test in March/April and a summer camp over the summer to help students prepare. Contact the Admissions Office for more information at [email protected]

How do I reschedule my test date?

You can reschedule your testing date by clicking here. You'll need your registration number which can be found on your confirmation email. You can have the confirmation email resent by clicking the same link and entering the email you used to register.