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Developing tests

Find out about how we develop tests, set levels, maintain standards and trial the pre-test stage.

The national curriculum tests are developed by specialist agencies with the help of subject experts and former teachers. Schools are involved right from the beginning, by taking part in informal trials of test questions.

Find out more about test development, level setting and maintaining standards from our download.

Pre-test stage

It's important that the most suitable questions are selected, so more questions are trialled than are used. The pre-test stage provides valuable information on the difficulty of the questions and determines how individual pupils respond.

The pre-test is assessed by experienced markers – many are practising teachers. We also include comments from pupils and teachers in the final analysis of the first pre-test.

Get involved

If you are interested in participating in the development of national curriculum tests and the single level tests pilot, find out how to get involved.

Last modified: 15 Apr 2010