ICAS Year 5 test

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Discover your students’ strengths and weaknesses

ICAS is an internationally-recognised academic competition that has been sat by over 10 million students. Its purpose is to recognise and reward academic achievement, but the results data can also be a goldmine for teachers, helping you to pinpoint your students’ strengths and weaknesses and determine the best next steps in class.

Every Year 5 test is created by psychometricians and experienced teachers, who work together with education measurement experts. They use the curriculum as a guide when creating them.

How the ICAS Year 5 test can help you pinpoint your students’ needs

Discover their strengths and weaknesses for specific skills levels, marked with “S” and “W”.

Learn their skill level compared to their grade average; whether it is below, on track, or above.

Identify which students may need extra work, and which may need extra support.

See which direction your student’s performance is trending, and make adjustments.

Make direct performance comparisons against other class members, the school, and nation.

Get the data you need to decide whether gifted and talented or support classes are required.

ICAS Year 5 test subjects

Exam papers can differ depending on the year level and country for ICAS. To find the right Year 5 exam paper for your country, please see the “Exam papers by year level” table on this page.


The Year 5 test paper for ICAS covers four key areas:

  • Text comprehension
  • Syntax
  • Vocabulary
  • Writer’s craft

As part of this, students must read a variety of texts and complete tasks like identifying the cause of events, contrasting judgements of reviewers, naming techniques such as similes, and more.


The Year 5 assessment for ICAS Mathematics tests the following important areas for the subject:

  • Algebra & patterns
  • Space & geometry
  • Chance & data
  • Number & arithmetic
  • Measures & units

Students are expected to perform tasks such as counting, comparing, and dividing numbers, solving complex number puzzles, working on time problems, and more.


For the Year 5 competition for ICAS Science, students must display their skills from traditional scientific methods such as observing, measuring, predicting, concluding, and problem solving. They may include observing cloud patterns, identifying crystal structures of salts, examining the differences between solids, liquids and gases, using simple electric circuit diagrams, and many more.

Digital Technologies

The Year 5 test for Digital Technologies covers the key skill areas for the subject, which are:

  • Programming
  • Word processing
  • Internet & email
  • Spreadsheet & databases
  • Graphics & multimedia
  • General skills

Students will be tested on tables, peripheral devices, presentations, web concepts, and lots more components of Digital Technologies.


The Year 5 assessment for ICAS Writing is broken down into two distinct skills: persuasive writing and narrative writing. In the former, students must write a persuasive text such as a letter to a council, an opinion piece for a newspaper, or a campaign manifesto. For the latter, students must write a narrative-based piece such as a complication or event in a story, a description of a setting, or the conclusion of a story.

They are marked on the genre, textual grammar, syntax/punctuation, and spelling in their work.

Spelling Bee

The Spelling Bee Year 5 competition aims to test students’ visual knowledge (using memory), morphological knowledge (using parts of words to build other words), phonological knowledge (using sound-letter relationships), and etymological knowledge (using word origins).

As you’d expect for a spelling competition, this is achieved by asking them to spell a variety of different words that test these skills.

Want the best ICAS practice for your Year 5 students?

Our past papers contain real questions from previous ICAS tests, making them one of the most effective ways to prepare for the competition.

All year levels for ICAS

Ready to access your students’ untapped potential?
ICAS helps you to find out what your students are capable of, as well as providing you with rich insights into their needs.