Children taking a computer test

What is I-Excel?

I-Excel is a new online, above-level test for high-ability 4th-6th graders.

I-Excel, developed by the Belin-Blank Center, offers the research-supported power of above-level testing in a convenient online format. Testing occurs in the school. I-Excel is an In-School Assessment and is available throughout the school year. One educator is designated as the contact person for the school, and oversees student registration for BESTS In-School. Registration is completed online.

I-Excel assesses in four areas:

  • Science
  • Mathematics
  • Reading
  • English

I-Excel discovers exceptionally talented students. Results can be used by educators to develop their students' strengths through recommendations about appropriately challenging curriculum.

I-Excel includes an emphasis on connecting testing to STEM subjects in school.

Other above-level tests may include only verbal or quantitative sections.

Who is recommended for I-Excel testing?

4th - 6th grade students who have scored in the top 5% of their age group on at least one section of a nationally-standardized test such as the Iowa Assessments are recommended for I-Excel testing.

How much does it cost?

$45 per student ($65 at open testing dates hosted by the Belin-Blank Center; $75 per student if testing fewer than 4 students). For BESTS In-School dates, Iowa 6th graders test for free.

How is I-Excel different from other tests?

Most grade-level tests are not very challenging for gifted students and the scores aren’t informative about readiness for advanced work.

I-Excel, a more challenging test, allows gifted students to showcase their talents and results help school personnel tailor educational opportunities to talented and exceptionally talented students.

How can I-Excel results be used?

The Belin-Blank Center provides an extensive interpretation of scores allowing educators to make data-driven decisions and differentiate for their students through curricular intervention and enrichment.

Educators receive a group report, which includes information about the group of students tested, plus an individual report for each student. Individual reports are shared with students’ families.

I-Excel licenses content developed by ACT that was designed to measure academic progress of junior high students. From that content, the Belin-Blank Center has been identifying the academic talents of bright 4th - 6th grade students for over 20 years.

I-Excel advantages:

  • Educators schedule testing sessions at a time and place convenient for them and their students.
  • Educators and parents do not have to wait for a specific national test date or drive long distances to a centralized testing center.
  • Schools may schedule multiple testing dates during the school year.
  • Testing can be conducted on weekdays or on weekends.


For more information:
I-Excel is the new academic instrument for BESTS In-School. Email assessment@belinblank.org to get started.

Download our flyer (pdf)

Computer requirements for I-Excel?

Testing requires a desktop or laptop computer (no iPads, smartphones, or other small mobile devices). For best results, use a high-speed internet connection.

We strongly recommend using Chrome or Firefox as the browser, an external mouse instead of a laptop trackpad, and a wired connection (instead of wireless). It is not necessary to download software in order to use I-Excel.

I-Excel is currently only available within the continental United States. Opportunities for international testing are coming Spring 2018 (prices and policies may vary). For more information, please contact assessment@belinblank.org.