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Terra Nova CSI Score

By Inderbir Kaur Sandhu, Ph.D

Q: My 9 year old third grade son recently took the Terra Nova tests as part of the school's annual assessment. He scored 99% in Total score and 99% on all but two areas (which were 96% and 92%).

The test gave a CSI score (an intelligence Index) and it states the norm is 100 and most score between 84-116. The SD is 16. He scored a 141 in a given range of (124-141) based on age and ability.

How do I interpret this score in relation to other IQ test results used in identifying giftedness? Does this score relate to actual IQ?
He is currently in a parochial school and I am trying to get him tested for giftedness. Any insight on this is appreciated. Thanks.

A: The InView section is specifically formulated to measure skills and abilities directly related to academic success such as verbal reasoning, sequences, analogies, and quantitative reasoning. This helps in the planning of programmes for students, diagnose possible learning disabilities, and screen students for placement into special programs. The CSI (Cognitive Skills Index) is derived from this portion. This test claims that the “CSI scores from InView provide a highly reliable measure of overall academic aptitude which is valuable information for guidance, activities planning, and special program identification. Anticipated Achievement scores allow one to compare student performance with that of similar individuals and groups. These scores are a powerful tool. Use them to improve instruction, address specific student strengths and needs, and provide valuable information for parent-teacher conferences”.

Bear in mind that the InView does not measure all aspects of cognitive abilities. Since it is intended for use in schools, emphasis is placed on reasoning abilities that are important for success in an educational program rather than other cognitive abilities. With a ceiling of 141, the cut-off for gifted is 127 and above. The range given places your son in the above average category.

A mere score may not indicate true intelligence but gives a general indication of the child's cognitive abilities based on the tested items. I would not compare IQ scores of two different tests for cognitive abilities as each test may emphasise on different aspects of aptitude. You may want to speak to the school about his abilities especially with regards to placing him in a gifted programme. They would be able to advise you based on his detailed score on this test.

A good site to have a look at for a better understanding. Good luck..


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