A norm-referenced test is a type of assessment used in education that allows teachers to compare a student’s results to someone else in their peer group. Often used in conjunction with a criterion-referenced test, which assesses student progress compared to some predetermined standard, a norm-referenced test allows an educator to see how a student measures up against someone in a similar cohort.
A norm-referenced test refers to a method of evaluation that produces results allowing an educator to see if a student or group of students have performed better or worse than a controlled, reference group. Norm-referenced tests, sometimes called NRTs, utilize multiple-choice format and some open-ended questions to obtain results. Scholastic Assessment Tests (SATs) and Graduate Record Examinations (GREs) may be considered examples of norm-referenced tests.