HSPT Practice Test 2024 with Study Guide [UPDATED]

HSPT Practice Test 2024 with Study Guide [UPDATED]: The HSPT (High School Placement Test) administered by Scholastic Testing Service, Inc. is the most common admissions exam used by Catholic schools. We provide sample questions and answers for HSPT test prep. You can also download a printable PDF of the HSPT Practice Test.

Before we proceed further, you must know that you should check with the specific schools you are interested in attending to see when they administer the exam and which test they use. You’ll have to register to take the test, using an application form the school can provide. After you register, you will receive a handbook of instructions and an admission ticket for the test. Be sure to bring the ticket with you on the day of the test.

HSPT Practice Test 2024


If you are an eighth-grade student who plans to attend a private, parish, or diocesan high school, this book is for you. Entry into one of these schools is competitive that is, more students want to enter the freshman class of a given high school than there are openings in that class.

Test Name High School Placement Test
Designed for administer to 8th graders entering high school
Purpose admission into specific Catholic high schools.
Test mode pen-paper based
Total Items 298 multiple-choice questions
Total Test sections Five
Time limit 141 minutes
Negative Marking no penalty for wrong answers

High School Placement Test (HSPT®) to assist with admissions, scholarship selection, and curriculum placement. The HSPT® is a comprehensive placement test for eighth graders for placement in the ninth grade.

The standard HSPT contains five parts and lasts about two and a half hours. The sections of the test are Verbal, Quantitative, Reading, Mathematics, and Language Skills. The Scholastic Testing Service also provides a choice of one optional test in Mechanical Aptitude, Science, or Catholic Religion. Because many schools do not choose to administer these tests, and because the results are not included as part of your percentile ranking, this book does not cover the optional exams. If the school you are interested in does use one of these tests, be sure to ask the school for more details about its contents.

The HSPT is available as the Closed version or the Open version. The Closed High School Placement Test (HSPT) is a secure test, with a new edition produced annually. The Closed HSPT is only offered to high schools as part of a lease/score program. Open HSPT – This format allows high schools to purchase their testing materials and score locally. T

Pre-HSPT – The Pre-HSPT is a seventh-grade edition of the HSPT available only to high schools as part of a lease/score program.

Purpose of the HSPT

Many schools in the United States require applicants to take the High School Placement Test (HSPT).

  • Junipero Serra High School (San Mateo)
  • Bellarmine College Prep (San Jose)
  • Mercy High School (Burlingame and San Jose)
  • Notre Dame High School (Belmont)
  • Sacred Heart Prep High School (Atherton)
  • Saint Ignatius College Preparatory (San Francisco)
  • Woodside Priory School (Portola Valley)

HSPT Exam Format

The HSPT contains 298 multiple-choice questions, numbered from 1 through 298. All questions have four answer choices, A, B, C, D. Some questions in the Verbal Skills section on the HSPT have only three answer choices, A, B, and C.

Unlike the COOP, the format of the HSPT remains relatively stable from year to year. The breakdown of sections, question types, and time allotted is as follows:

Sections No. of items (MCQs) Time Limit (minutes)
Verbal Skills 60 16
Quantitative Skills 52 30
Reading 62 25 
Mathematics 64 45
Language Skills 60 25

Verbal Skills: This test measures how well you perform reasoning tasks involving the use of words. Your ability in this area is related to your performance in language, reading, and various areas within social studies.

Quantitative Skills: This test measures your ability to do reasoning problems involving numbers and quantities. This ability is related to performance in mathematics, sciences, and other areas that deal with numbers and things.

Total Cognitive Skills (TCS): This score is a total of the Verbal Skills and Quantitative Skills subtests.

Reading: This test measures your ability to remember important ideas and significant details, recognize central thought or purpose, make logical inferences and understand vocabulary in context. Since good reading habits and skills are essential to learning, thinking, and problem-solving, this score is usually related to your overall success in school.

Mathematics: This test not only measures your ability to perform arithmetic operations and apply math concepts to solve problems but also your knowledge of important concepts and ability to reason. Your score on this test tells you how well you are prepared for high school mathematics.

Language: This test measures your knowledge of capitalization, punctuation, grammar, spelling, usage and composition. Total Basic Skills (TBS) This score is a total of the Reading, Mathematics, and Language subtests.

Optional Test: The option test is a 40-item test in either Science or Religion.

Battery Composite: This score is a total of the Verbal, Quantitative, Reading, Language, and Mathematics sections of the battery

How the HSPT Exam Is Scored

Each question that you answer correctly on the HSPT earns you one point. There is no penalty for incorrect answers, so it is worthwhile to guess if you are not sure of the answer. Also, since each question is worth one point regardless of how easy or difficult it is, you should always answer the questions that are easier for you first. Rack up as many points as you can, then spend any remaining minutes on questions that require more time.

Since there is no penalty for wrong answers, you should answer every question on the HSPT.

Your raw score, or the total number of points you earn, is tallied and then converted to a scaled score ranging from 200 to 800. The Scholastic Testing Service will also determine your percentile rank according to your scaled score. Percentile rank shows where you stand in relation to other students and allows the schools to more easily compare candidates. There is no passing or failing score on the HSPT, although each school determines what is a desirable score for its candidates.

HSPT Study Guide


  • HSPT® Interpretive Manual (Download PDF) The Interpretive manual is a guide to understanding HSPT scores and drawing conclusions about student performance.
  • Official Page of High School Placement Test (HSPT®) – OVERVIEW Link