Is your child taking the CAT4? Find out how schools apply CAT4 results.

So, welcome to how schools apply CAT4 results.

Why not try our own CAT4 practice test.

How do schools apply CAT4 results?

  1. Primarily to determine the reasoning qualities of a child and compares his or her progress to the children of the same age and groups.
  2. Aligned with the above as a means of tracking in detail an individual student’s learning progress.
  3. But also to show teachers how best to teach individual students.
  4. Also, CAT4 score comparisons are made. We explain how and why below.

How are CAT4 score comparisons made?

Different CAT4 comparisons are made using the raw score and that can be obtained from checking how many CAT 4 answers were attempted correctly. These raw scores are then compared to the performance of subjects from the same age group and the normative scores are then determined which will describe the pupil’s performance.

On the other hand, the standard age score or SAS is the score of each age group’s average and is set to 100 and the standard deviation is set to 2. If two pupils from different age groups receive the same SAS, then it can be claimed that they have done equally well when they are being compared to others of the same age group.

Furthermore, a student who is receiving the same score on two different batteries can be said to have performed equally well on both and compared to others students of the same group.

Why are CAT4 score comparisons done?

in fact a deeper level analysis of CAT4 results are used to plan learning interventions. We describe below examples of using the CAT4 for:

  • Interpreting the CAT4 scores of ‘Calculation-Masked’ pupils
  • CAT 4 score interpretation of ‘Maths Seesaw’ pupils
  • Interpreting the CAT4 scores of ‘Fuel and Fly’ pupils


How the CAT4 will be used by your child’s school

The CAT4 provides several opportunities, including identifyin* your child’s cognitive strengths.

Although schools typically use CAT4 results to provide:

  1. A concrete perspective on the achievement of the pupil and can also be identified.
  2. To reveal a true hidden potential of a student. However, once an assessment has been done, all the numbers can be analysed for a deeper level of understanding of how well the children are performing. At the same time, there are some questions such as how will a parent know if something needs to be done about their child’s CAT 4 performance.

Before getting into all of this discussion, it is important to understand what CAT4 does. It provides an all-around profile of the student’s ability so that any kind of support can be targeted. It also provides the right level of challenge and attempts to make some of the most informed decisions about the progress of an individual and also their target attainment. It also provides details on the strengths and weaknesses in four main areas and they are;

Verbal Deficit Children

According to experts, there is a category of children that has been ranked as verbal deficit children and for them comparing the verbal score to the non-verbal score makes all the difference and helps in the identification of that kind of individual. Usually these children have greater potential than they show and for having a language barrier or not speaking a local language, these verbal deficit children are considered below average. There should be a common system in place that identifies the issues faced by these students and bring in a language that is suitable for all of these students.

For example, a student who has a verbal of 90 and a non-verbal of 110 can be said to have a verbal deficit of 20, which means that they might struggle to communicate something that they understand but because of the deficit they are not able to explain it like they want to. Usually, these children can select English as an additional language and that way they will be able to communicate everything as the English language is the most commonly spoken language out there.

However, if a child has a verbal score of 110 and a non-verbal of 130, then a deficit of 20 will indicate something completely different. The child has an above-average verbal score but it will still lag behind their cognitive reasoning. It means that they will struggle to communicate how gifted they are.

So, which CAT4 interventions adaptations are the most  appropriate?

These examples require a certain level of language support but they are at very different levels. The below-average attainers will require English language support
and development. The vocabulary sheets and also pictures for supporting and understanding the practical activities that will support the child in demonstrating their true potential and identity.

Furthermore, the second child that comes with higher verbal and non-verbal will have no such issues with understanding the language but their skill level will lag and their extremely high cognitive ability will also be a reason for the same. If someone is working towards building better reasoning skills, then any kind of justification or explanation will allow the child to verbalize anything that they understand. Questioning the teacher will also tease their knowledge and understanding and also scaffold their CAT4 answers.

Using the CAT4 with ‘Calculation-Masked’ Children

Calculation-masked children are quite the opposite of verbally deficit children and one can compare it to their CAT4 verbal and CAT4 non-verbal scores. One should be looking for a significantly lower non-verbal CAT4 score. Such masked children usually have lower non-verbal meaning and they can speak better than they can understand. In a classroom full of students, masked students will have the ability to speak quite well and their verbal abilities will be able to cover a lot of misconceptions. They can disguise their actual understanding of a concept. In short, it can be said they might not be so good at understanding but they can pretend quite well that they have been able to understand.

CAT4-based Adaptations

There is very less about interventions and more about being aware of the students who have any such imbalance. Like with all children, questions will also assist a
teacher in really having an idea of whether or not the masked children understand the concepts or not. Furthermore, asking them the ‘why’ behind their statements and getting them to explain what they understand will result in figuring out what they have learned.

Furthermore, this might also eradicate several misconceptions that the students might have. Every teacher needs to understand what every student is dealing with and if it is something quite serious, then it is also their responsibility to fix it. All students should have an equal learning process.

Using the CAT4 with ‘Maths Seesaw’ Children

Maths Seesaw Children is calculated by comparing a quantitative score of a child with their CAT4 spatial score. The ideal, is that a child is balanced. However, some children can attain an imbalance between their understanding of number and space/shape.

So, what are CAT4’s implications in this case?

Well, high CAT4 spatial when combined with low quantitative CAT4 scores indicate that pupil will learn better utilising concrete resources for grasping maths concepts. On the other hand, a child with low spatial and high quantitative will have the capability to easily pick up abstract concepts but can find difficulty to apply this to concrete resources.

Making appropriate CAT4 score-based interventions

Those teachers, who use the CAT4, can utilise the strength of children for developing their weaknesses. If a student has inclination towards abstract mathematics, then abstract method can be taught to them. Also, encouraging them to apply it utilising images and concrete materials like counters. In the case of spatial bias learners, it is important to provide children with concrete resources as it will help in learning new mathematical techniques.

Using the CAT4 with ‘Fuel and Fly’ Children

Fuel and Fly children have a CAT4 non-verbal score of 120 or more combined with a CAT4 verbal score of 120 and above. Based on this score, fuel and fly children are evaluated. These are high achievers who require challenging learning interventions courses. These children not only have high CAT4 verbal and high CAT4 non-verbal skills but can pick-up new learning very quickly. In summary, they’ve the cognitive ability and language skills to excel.

So, yes, these children prefer challenging activities. For building their knowledge, the use of mastery style activities can be effective as it will allow them to problem solve, explain and justify. Focus on building their peer and self-evaluation skills can be useful for their development and improvement.

CAT4 score interpretation summary

In summary, we’ve shown how helpful the CAT4 report scores are for identify learning gaps and which of your child’s
strengths to focus on. It is also crucial to develop weaker areas and keeping children aware of their progress and results so that they can improve.


Targeted CAT 4 test practice by CAT4 section

Our FREE CAT4 preparation resources

Each of these CAT4 levels practice will effectively prepare your child for the CAT4 exam.

Free CAT 4 Papers with Answers. Students in room writing exam

We also offer free CAT4 non-verbal reasoning skills resources.
For example, our popular Passed Papers You Tube channel‘s

CAT4 video guide.

Planning your CAT4 test practice step-by-step

Or if the CAT4 test practice is unsuitable then you will find our extensive School Entrance exam practice tests here.

  1. Establish How to interprete a CAT 4 results report.
  2. Learn what the different CAT 4 sections look like.
  3. Practice with the correct year CAT 4 test for your own child.

Do try our CAT4 test practice and parents guide to the CAT4.

Which four cognitive skills does the CAT4 assess?

The CAT4 requires knowledge of four cognitive skills:

  1. Literacy skills
  2. Numeracy skills
  3. Non-verbal reasoning skills
  4. Spatial reasoning skills