Des Moines Adventist School
Academic Performance - Cognitive Genesis

Academic Performance of Students in Adventist Schools

The Cognitive Genesis study set out to answer these two related questions:

  1. How well are students doing academically in the Adventist school system?

  2. How does academic performance in Adventist schools compare to academic performance in public schools and other private schools?

Standardized Iowa achievement tests provided data about the students, but context and meaning would come from a comparison group.

The researchers selected the 2005 national norm group for comparison which included students from public schools (90%), Catholic schools (5%) and private non-Catholic schools (5%).

In the results shown here, the 50th percentile is the national average. Anything above this represents above average academic achievement.



Students in all grades, in Adventist schools of all sizes, outperformed the national average in all subjects.

  1. Students in Adventist schools had higher-than-expected academic achievement based on an assessment of individual ability.

  2. Students who transferred to Adventist schools saw a significant improvement in their test scores. Also, the longer students stayed in the Adventist school system, the more they gained in achievement and ability.

Source of research and for more information go to

Results by GradePercentile Ranking

Grade All Students All SDA Education
Total 61 70
Grade 3 60 66
Grade 4 61 69
Grade 5 60 68
Grade 6 57 66
Grade 7 59 72
Grade 8 63 73
Grade 9 62 72
Grade 11 68 79

Results by SubjectPercentile Ranking

Grade All Students All SDA Education
61 70
Reading 63 71
Language Arts 62 70
Mathematics 55 62
Social Studies 59 67
Science 63 70
Sources of Information 59 78
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