What is the difference between BEST Literacy and BEST Literacy 2.0?

CAL created BEST Literacy 2.0 with the following updates

  • Alignment to the 2016 English Language Proficiency Standards for Adult Education (ELPs) and the 2017 National Reporting System Educational Functioning Levels (NRS EFLs).
  • Updated question types and themes that reflect contemporary life in the U.S.
  • A set of sample questions which may be reviewed with examinees at the beginning of the test administration session, to prepare examinees to respond to the Reading and Writing test questions.

Please note: BEST Literacy 2.0 measures examinees’ performances from NRS Level 1 through NRS Level 4. Examinees who are above NRS Level 4 will exit out of BEST Literacy 2.0 and need to be measured with another Reading and Writing assessment. In other words, BEST Literacy 2.0 is not designed for assessing NRS Levels 5 and 6.

Updated training and test materials accompanying these updates will be released soon. More information can be found in the BEST Literacy 2.0 Test Manual.

Is training required for BEST Literacy 2.0?

Yes. Test administrators and/or scorers are required to read through the BEST Literacy 2.0 Test Manual before beginning administering and scoring the test. An optional self-access, self-paced online training course will also be available for purchase as an additional training resource.

What is the timeline for transitioning to BEST Plus 3.0 and BEST Literacy 2.0?

Test administrator training will be available to all current and prospective test administrators by January 2024. Tests and materials will be available for programs with qualified BEST Plus 3.0 Test Administrators at that time. You may continue to use the older generations of the tests (BEST Plus 2.0 and BEST Literacy) through June 2024. After June 2024, only the newer generations of the tests (BEST Plus 3.0 and BEST Literacy 2.0) will be supported. CAL will release more information in future newsletters and on the AEA website.

Can I continue using BEST Plus 2.0 and BEST Literacy during the transition?

The BEST Plus 2.0 and BEST Literacy tests are approved for use through June 2024. These tests will expire after June 2024.

Can I pre-test with the older generation and post-test with the newer generation of the tests?

No. For scores to be comparable, you should always pre- and post-test with the same generation of test. For example, if you pre-test with BEST Plus 2.0 you should post-test with BEST Plus 2.0.

Will I be able to exchange BEST Plus 2.0 and BEST Literacy tests for the new generations?

No. Unfortunately, CAL is not able to provide credit for any remaining BEST Plus 2.0 or BEST Literacy tests. We recommend monitoring your remaining tests (your BEST Plus 2.0 test balance can be accessed on the test activation website) and ordering only what you need until your program transitions fully to the newer tests.

Will there be new pricing for the new tests and materials?

Yes. The updated pricelist will be available by December 2023.