ATYP Qualifying Information

Center for Talent Development Assessment at Northwestern University and ATYP

October 2021

  • Want to know why ATYP? How does ATYP serve its students?
    • ATYP identifies and serves middle and high school high-ability students who need the challenge, are motivated to learn, and are capable of completing above-grade-level curriculum with fast-paced instruction.
    • ATYP uses advanced high school and university level curriculum which culminates in Advanced Placement (AP) content and leads to student success in advanced classes.
    • Currently, ATYP has math and language arts programs that focus on advancement and acceleration in Kalamazoo and Battle Creek (depending on enrollment).
    • Students begin the program in 7th or 8th grade and continue for two to four years.
    • ATYP follows the local public school calendar.
    • Parents are responsible for the transportation of their students to and from ATYP; some districts provide a bus.
    • For most students, the courses meet one day per week from 1:20 – 3:50 p.m. (AP classes meet two days per week).
    • Classes are offered Tuesday through Thursday in Battle Creek (tentative) and Kalamazoo (and virtually, tentative). All class types/locations depend on enrollment.
    • These students tend to take a seminar/study hall period during the last hour of the school day for the rest of the week (if possible). They do ATYP homework there, as well as other schoolwork. They do not attend a class for that subject at the middle school.
    • Read the article "Why Getting 100% on Everything is Setting Gifted Students Up to Fail"
  • Does it cost anything?
    • Tuition is paid for by public schools for their enrolled students.
    • Revenue from school districts pays for about 75% of ATYP’s costs.
    • The other 25% comes from WMU (office, classroom, library access) and from donations.
    • For students who are home-schooled or at private schools, the tuition is paid by the families.
    • We currently charge districts $400 per class per semester.
    • Families are responsible for $150 in enrollment/participation fees per year, per student. Portions of these fees are paid at enrollment and at the beginning of each semester. Fee waivers are available for those who qualify for free or reduced lunch.
  • How does my child qualify?
    • Your presence here means you’ve taken the first step; we’ve identified your student’s potential based on standardized achievement test scores (90th percentile or better) or from teacher, parent, or counselor recommendations.
    • Register with CTD Assessment for the online SAT test in January - March or with ATYP for an in-person ACT test in February. Submitting a portfolio is also a possibility.
  • Center for Talent Development Assessment at Northwestern University
    • CTD Assessment is part of the Center for Talent Development at Northwestern University in Evanston, Illinois.
    • It seeks to serve gifted children and their families from Pre-K through grade 12.
    • Even if you’re not interested in ATYP, we highly recommend CTD Assessment as a low-cost assessment option.
    • More information at: https://www.ctd.northwestern.edu/above-grade-level-assessment.
    • Deadlines are:
      • SAT 2022 dates are Saturdays, January 29, February 27, March 26, April 24. ACT dates are in the planning stages.
    • CTD Assessment uses a three-step process
      • Step One: Identifying students using: state test scores, achievement test scores, past talent search participant, qualification for school gifted program, teacher and/or parent nomination
      • Step Two: Administer above-grade-level tests
        • Definition: A test designed for older students taken by younger students.
        • Rationale: Above-grade-level tests have enough ceiling (difficult questions) to differentiate among students with advanced abilities.
      • Step Three: Access customized score report and targeted resources
        • CTD Assessment provides a detailed score report showing how your student compares to other gifted students.
        • CTD Assessment provides tailored recommendations useful for educational planning.
        • CTD Assessment provides access to a curated set of resources and educational opportunities appropriate for gifted students.
  • Which test should I take?
    • Either test is fine as both the ACT and the SAT contain high school material.
    • The ACT seems to be better for math oriented students while either test is good for the reading and writing oriented students.
    • The SAT is through CTD Assessment and will have more supporting information. The ACT is through ATYP and the scores can not be used for any other program.
    • The ACT is in-person while the SAT is online.
  • Registering for CTD Assessment
  • What to bring to the in-person test
    • Have several non-mechanical pencils and a calculator with you.
    • Tests are long – bring a snack and water bottle.
    • Cell phones must be off and watches cannot beep. Leave the phone at home if necessary.
  • Preparing for the test - in-person or online
    • For more information, attend a Test Preview seminar (described below).
    • Take a practice exam found online for the test you are taking.
    • Get a good night’s sleep and have a good breakfast.
    • Arrive at the testing site on time: 7:45 am.
    • Special content prep classes are not recommended and do not help us determine the right placement.
  • Test Preview Seminar
    • Held on Saturday, January 8, February 5 (online), March 5 or a recorded session is also available.
    • Held both in-person or online this year. Cost: $35
      • Tips and content: General Overview / Math Overview / English Overview
  • Why pay the CTD Assessment fee?
    • ACT/SAT scores for younger students are confusing when viewed out of context.
    • CTD provides easy-to-understand material to help young students and parents interpret scores and plan educational needs for the future.
    • Direct online registration for the ACT/SAT is not available for students under 13. 
    • Students continue to receive information from CTD throughout high school.

Need more information? Contact us!