Scholarships and Placement
An important rite of passage for those going to Catholic high schools is the High School Placement Test (HSPT.) Gross Catholic is administering its HSPT Admissions Exam on January 9, 2021 from 8:00 AM to 11:30 AM.
If you are a 6th or 7th grader, then begin your conquering of the HSPT by taking our practice exam. Gross Catholic’s 6th & 7th grade practice test also will be held Saturday, January 9th at 8 AM. You can register for the 6-7th Grade practice exam now. If you are in 8th grade, follow the instructions below.
Catholic schools in the Omaha area use the HSPT to place students in courses according to their ability as measured by the test. The HSPT is also used to award scholarships to the students who take the exam. Gross Catholic awards a total scholarship amount of almost $50,000 to the top test takers.
Tips and Tricks!
There are just five parts to the HSPT: The Verbal Skills section has 60 questions, and goes for 16 minutes. Quantitative Skills has 52 questions and is 30 minutes in length. Reading: 62 questions and lasts 25 minutes. The Mathematics section lasts 45 minutes and is composed of 64 questions. Language is 25 minutes long and has 60 questions.
Each Catholic school uses the test differently. Gross Catholic uses the HSPT as our Admissions Exam. We then use the HSPT scores, the student’s grades, as well as teacher recommendations, to place students in appropriate classes. At Gross Catholic, we take into account the academic history of a student, not just one snapshot on test day. To study for the HSPT, we highly recommend purchasing one of the many HSPT study guides. They are well designed and give numerous hints. Be sure to purchase a guide that includes practice tests.
When you are taking the study guide practice tests, remember that those taking the HSPT are not penalized for wrong answers. Therefore, don’t leave questions blank, go ahead and guess on the study guide questions as well as on the actual HSPT instead of leaving blanks. While practicing, set a timer, and get used to the time restrictions. After you correct your practice test, spend time going through the wrong answers to figure out why you answered incorrectly. Don’t forget to also review your correct answers.
School breaks are a great time to carve out some quality time with your HSPT Study Guide. Set a schedule and stick to it. Start with study sessions of 20-30 minutes, then increase the time to 60 minutes. A daily schedule over a number of weeks is a much better strategy than cramming everything in a few days before the test.
Our Gross Catholic standardized test “guru,” Mr. Rick Sloup, has some important suggestions: “A student’s performance on the HSPT depends primarily on several factors. Most important is a student’s level of reading comprehension. In general, the better a student’s reading comprehension, the better his or her performance will be on all sections of the HSPT, even the mathematics portions. Obviously a firm grasp of basic arithmetic and pre-algebra topics such as fractions, decimals, and percents will also aid immensely with the math tests. In addition, the overall quality of a student’s grade school education, and the information they have acquired through family and other social interactions, will be directly related to how they score on the placement exam. Familiarity with standardized tests, particularly the HSPT, and how they are structured also impacts a student’s performance. “
Eat a good breakfast and get plenty of rest the night before the test. How you feel physically on test day, can impact your score. When taking the actual HSPT, it is best to pace yourself. Know how much time you can spend on a question in each section beforehand. If a question is giving you trouble, skip it, answer questions you know, and then come back and answer them at the end. Stay calm, breathe easy. You can do this!
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About Gross Catholic
One of Nebraska’s best catholic high schools, Gross Catholic is a faith and family-based community committed to developing Christian leaders through academic excellence in the Marianist tradition. Recognized locally for its outstanding education, welcoming atmosphere, competitive sports programs, engaging activities, robust faith, and boundless service work, Gross Catholic has energized the Omaha area for over 50 years. We are Faithful, Compassionate, and Driven! We are Gross Catholic!
To discover more about one of the top high schools in Omaha, contact us at 402.734.2000 or visit our Admissions page at grosscatholic.org.