CASAS GOALS: Greater Opportunities for Adult Learning Success

CASAS GOALS: Greater Opportunities for Adult Learning Success

CASAS GOALS Greater Opportunities for Adult Learning Success

The CASAS GOALS Reading assessment was approved for NRS reporting for 7 years beginning February 5, 2018. It was approved for use by programs in Minnesota in September 2018, and the scores are now available in SiD. It is important to note that the assessment is currently only approved to assess the Reading skills of Adult Basic Education (ABE) and Adult Secondary Education (ASE) learners.

The test items are aligned to the College and Career Readiness Standards (CCRS) and the new NRS ABE/ASE level descriptors. For more information on the specific CCR standards that are addressed in each level test, see the Reading GOALS Test Blueprints.

The Tests

A new appraisal, Form 900R, must be used to place learners in the appropriate GOALS level pretest. It is 28 questions and 30 minutes long. The pre- and post-tests use the same CASAS level names as the previous forms (A, B, C, and D), with Level A being the easiest test, and Level D being the most difficult. Students are allowed 60 minutes to complete the A level tests, and 75 minutes to complete the B, C, and D level tests.

There are GOALS Sample Test Items on the CASAS website that will allow teachers an opportunity to take a look at the level of difficulty found at each of the levels.

How can English Language Learners be assessed?

The revised NRS ELL descriptors were published at the end of 2017 and since that time CASAS has worked to align the GOALS assessments to the ELL descriptors. The newly aligned assessments were submitted to the NRS for approval in October, 2018. It could take many months for these assessments to be approved for use with English Language Learners. In the interim, the NRS has extended approval of CASAS Life & Work Reading and Life & Work Listening through February 2, 2021.

Additionally, Forms 27 and 28 are being revised, with the plan to submit them to the NRS in October of 2020. The current assessments can be used for ELL reporting purposes through February 2, 2021. They are only able to be used for ABE learners through June 30, 2019.

Finally, Listening GOALS is currently being field-tested. CASAS plans to submit it to the NRS in October 2019.

What do we know about the CASAS GOALS Math assessment?

CASAS submitted the Math GOALS assessments to the NRS in March. They are currently completing a study that compares the new GOALS test to TABE 9&10. They are seeking programs willing to test students using both assessments, and there are incentives for those who are able to do so. If you have an interest in participating in this study, contact Karen Burger at [email protected] for more information.

CASAS Math GOALS assesses math concepts via common life and work applications. A range of item types will include word problems, simple to advanced calculation, and situational scenarios that reflect real-world applications. The new math tests will allow use of a calculator, and formulae will be provided within the test item to keep assessment focused on math concepts and skills, not memorization.

The new CASAS tests are available in both paper and eTesting versions.


Get further information on CASAS GOALS on their website. At this link you will find a Reading GOALS overview, Reading GOALS ABE/ASE FAQs, Reading GOALS Test Blueprint, Sample Test Items, and Reading GOALS – Basic Skills Content Standards by form.

Training Options

If you need to be trained to administer CASAS, there are several options. We offer face-to-face trainings with state certified trainers at Summer Institute, Support Staff Conference, and Regionals. We also provide local trainings by request – we need 8 to 10 participants to schedule a local training. Finally, CASAS provides free online training at If you are interested in scheduling a training, contact Marty Olsen at [email protected].

Marty Olsen, Coordinator SW ABE / MN ABE Assessment