Understanding the Imagine Math PreK-2 Benchmark Test


This article does not apply to students taking the NWEA™ MAP® Growth Assessment

Before students take the Imagine Math PreK-2 Benchmark test, Administrators and Teachers should understand what the Benchmark test measures, how the test is structured, and when the test should be administered. Once you understand how the Benchmark works and how students experience the Benchmark test, you're ready to administer the Benchmark. After testing, you can review student test results.

When the Benchmark tests are administered

Three Benchmarks are available each school year. Provided they aren't taking the NWEA MAP Growth Assessment instead, PreK-2 students automatically receive the Imagine Math PreK-2 Benchmark 1 after they:

  • complete the introductory lesson that explains how to navigate through the program
    -- AND --
  • complete the first lesson for their rostered grade level.

This helps young students become familiar with the program and with doing math on a computer before they are asked to take an assessment.

Benchmark 1 is enabled by default and cannot be disabled.

Benchmarks 2 and 3 are not mandatory. They are not enabled by default and must be assigned by a School Administrator or Teacher.


  • If you only administer one Benchmark, you will be unable to view growth over time in your students' Quantile® measures.  For this reason, Imagine Learning recommends that you administer all three Benchmarks even though only one is required.
  • To allow sufficient time for student growth, administer each Benchmark at least 90 days apart.  

What the Benchmark tests measure

Benchmark 1 determines students’ proficiency in key skill areas and then places them in the Imagine Math curriculum so that they receive the instruction that they need. Benchmarks 2 and 3 can be administered throughout the school year to show evidence of student growth over time. When at least two Benchmarks have been administered, you can compare students' latest Benchmark results with previous results. Benchmark results are also used to refine where your students are placed in Imagine Math. The Benchmark test determines students' proficiency in these skill areas: 

  • Counting, Cardinality, and Numbers in Base 10
  • Addition and Subtraction
  • Geometry, Measurement, and Data

The results of the Benchmark test are reported as a Quantile® measure. Based on their Quantile measure, students are grouped into Performance Levels provided by MetaMetrics. 

How Benchmarks affect pathways

The results of each Benchmark can cause prerequisite lessons to be added as needed throughout the pathway, and students can be moved further along in their grade level pathway if they have already mastered the lesson content. However, the students' underlying pathway will still be that of their rostered grade level.


PreK students do not get prerequisite lessons added since they are already at the lowest level of content available.

How the Benchmark Test is structured

When students begin the Benchmark test, they initially receive test questions that are appropriate for their rostered grade level. As students work through the Benchmark, it adapts to their skill level, which means the students in your class will see test questions that vary from other students' questions. Student performance determines the level of difficulty of the test questions students receive.

The Imagine Math PreK-2 Benchmark tests look and sound like lessons in Imagine Math PreK-2, but students receive neutral feedback (instead of the instructional feedback they receive during lessons) while they work on the test.