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CAASPP / CAST Test Pause Rules

All assessments can be paused by either the student or the test administrator or test examiner during the test. Tests may be paused for, but not limited to, the following reasons:

■ Student needing a break

■ End of testing session

■ Inactivity

■ Technical issues such as a power outage


Pause Rules Apply to:

■ Smarter Balanced Computer Adaptive Test (CAT) for English Language Arts (ELA) and Mathematics

■ California Science Test (CAST) discrete item blocks

■ Initial and Summative ELPAC—Listening and Reading

■ California Spanish Assessment (CSA)


Equal to or Less Than 20 Minutes

■ The student will return to where the student left off within a segment and revisit previously answered questions in the current segment. The student will not be able to access previously submitted segments.


More than 20 Minutes20min

■ The student returns to the last page containing questions with which the student has not yet interacted with.

The student cannot return to previously answered segments or questions, even if they are marked for review.

Any highlighted text will not be saved regardless of how long the test is paused; notes entered on the digital notepad will be saved. Global Notes, which are available only for ELA Performance Tasks (PTs), are retained from segment to segment.

If a student is paused while working on a constructed response, the partial response will be submitted and unable to be revised.


Test Timeout Due to Inactivity

■ As a security measure, students, test administrators, and test examiners are automatically logged off the test after 30 minutes of inactivity.

■ Before the secure browser logs the student off the assessment, a warning message will be displayed on the screen. Selecting [OK] will restart the 30-minute inactivity timer.

■ The system recognizes activity as – selecting or entering an answer, and – using navigation tools.

■ Moving the mouse is not considered “activity.”


Pause Considerations for ELPAC

■ For a paused test, the test questions that include an audio stimulus for the ELPAC are not permitted to be replayed for a student who – has not been assigned the pause or replay audio embedded designated support and – had navigated away from the audio stimulus at the time the test was paused.


No Pause Restriction

■ The pause rule does not apply to the following tests:

– Smarter Balanced PTs


– California Alternate Assessments (CAAs)

– Initial and Summative ELPAC Speaking and Writing

– Initial and Summative Alternate ELPAC

In other words, the pause restrictions only apply to CAASPP Math and ELA Computer Adapted Test open-ended responses

■ Note: If a pause in testing is needed while a student is taking a PT, it is recommended that the pause occur between PT segments and not in the middle of a PT.