# Stanines, Percentiles, and Grade Equivalents

Q. What are stanines, percentiles, and grade equivalent scores?

A. STANINE SCORES
Stanine is short for standard nine. A stanine score ranges from a low of 1 to a high of 9; therefore, the name “stanine.” For instance, a stanine score of  1, 2, or 3 is below average;  4, 5, or 6 is average; and 7, 8, or 9 is above average. The stanine score shows the general level of achievement of a child—below average, average, or above average. In Virginia, parents who use a standardized achievement test for evidence of achievement must show that their homeschooled child has scored “in or above the fourth stanine.” The fourth stanine begins at the 23rd percentile.

PERCENTILE SCORES
Percentile scores allow you to compare one student’s scores with a group of students who took the same test. In contrast to stanines, percentiles show scores ranging from 1 to 99 and give parents a more detailed description of how their child compares with other students who took the test.  For example, if a student scored in the 69th percentile on a test, the student achieved a score that is higher than 69% of the other students who took the test. So, if 100 students took the test, the student in the 69th percentile scored higher than 69 students. This does not refer to the percentage of correct answers.