Pennsylvania Alternate System of Assessment (PASA)

  • The Pennsylvania Alternate System of Assessment (PASA) is a statewide assessment designed for students with the most significant cognitive disabilities. It is intended to provide an alternate measure of student achievement in alignment with Pennsylvania's academic standards.


    Students eligible for the PASA meet specific criteria established by the Pennsylvania Department of Education. This assessment is specifically designed for students who are unable to participate in the regular PSSA assessments, even with accommodations.

    Subjects Assessed

    The PASA assesses the following subjects:

    • English Language Arts (ELA): This section focuses on essential language arts skills such as reading, writing, and listening.
    • Mathematics: The math section evaluates students' understanding of mathematical concepts and problem-solving skills.
    • Science and Technology: Administered to eligible students, this section assesses their knowledge and application of scientific concepts and technological skills.

    Grade Levels

    The PASA is available for eligible students aged 3 through 8, and in grade 11.


    The primary goals of the PASA include:

    • Individualized Assessment: The PASA is tailored to the unique learning needs of students with significant cognitive disabilities.
    • Alternative Path to Demonstrate Proficiency: It provides an alternative way for eligible students to demonstrate their knowledge and skills in accordance with state standards.
    • Supporting Individualized Education Programs (IEPs): PASA results are used to inform and guide the development of students' IEPs.

    Find answers to common questions about the PASA in this FAQ . (FAQ en Espanol)