Reading Index (RAI) – Gr. 12 Version

The Reading & Arithmetic Indexes measure basic grade level competency of math and reading comprehension skills to the Grade 8 and 9 levels and Grade 12 versions are also available.


Unfortunately, we no longer offer this product. 

Please see our Math and Reading categories for alternatives.


Avoid hiring people who can’t read well or whose arithmetic and reading comprehension skills are insufficient for the work you intend to have them doing!  Before you invest time and money to train a new employee, test your applicants for their abilities in:

  • Word Decoding
  • Comprehending Paragraphs
  • Picture-Word Association
  • Comprehending Sentences

This test provides the answers you need to make an informed decision.

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Not the perfect fit?  No problem.  We have many similar tests to choose from.  See alternatives in the  MATH and READING category sections of our site.  See the Arithmetic Index (RAI) as well


What does it do and what problem does it solve?

The Reading-Arithmetic Indexes (RAI) are a two-part (formerly) paper-and-pencil inventory that measures the job applicant’s level of development in reading and/or math computation.  There are 4 versions available.  A Grade 8 and Grade 12 version for Arithmetic and a Grade 9 and Grade 12 version for Reading Comprehension.  Each version is sold separately.  As with any selection tool, the RAI should be used in conjunction with other pre-employment screening procedures such as interviews and reference checks.

This assessment is a measure of arithmetic ability matched to an approximate US grade level equivalency score.  It was originally designed for use in industrial settings.  Use it to assess an applicant’s current mathematical abilities for entry-level positions, for suitability for entry into post-secondary education venues or to determine where to begin remedial instruction.

The Reading-Arithmetic Inventory measures applicants on the following scales:

Reading Index – Grade 9

Contains 60 items that test applicant’s ability to read and understand basic materials through to grade nine.

• Picture-word association
• Word decoding
• Comprehension of phrases
• Comprehension of sentences
• Comprehension of paragraphs

Arithmetic Index – Grade 8

Contains 54 items that test ability to add, subtract, multiply, divide and use fractions, decimals and percentages to grade 8.

• Addition and subtraction of whole numbers
• Multiplication and division of whole numbers
• Basic operations involving fractions
• Basic operations involving decimals and percentages


The Arithmetic Index & Reading Index – Grade 12 – If a higher grade-level determination is required use the Grade 12 versions.

Reading lndex-12

  • Picture-Word Association (Level 1) – Associating a word with a picture
  • Word Decoding (Level 2) – Recognizing simple words
  • Phrase Comprehension (Level 3) – Understanding phrases
  • Sentence Comprehension (Level 4) – Determining the meaning of complex sentences with modifying words, phrases, or clauses in different positions
  • Paragraph Comprehension I and II (Levels 5 and 6) – Integrating multiple Instructions or sentences to understand the object or situation being described

Arithmetic lndex-12

  • Addition and Subtraction (Level 1) – Adding and subtracting single- and multiple-digit numbers
  • Multiplication and Division (Level 2) – Multiplying and dividing single- and multiple-digit numbers
  • Fractions (Level 3) – Adding, subtracting, multiplying, and dividing fractions
  • Decimals and Percentages (Level 4)  -Adding, subtracting, multiplying, and dividing decimals and percentages
  • Square Roots and Powers (Level 5) – Computing the square and square root functions
  • Geometry and Word Problems (Level 6) – Using mathematical formulas to solve complex problems; understanding word problems and determining the mathematical solutions to solve them

The tests have been validated for accuracy against the following occupations:

Reading Index

• Assembler
• Carpenter
• Electrician
• Freight car repairer
• Heavy equipment operator
• Machinist
• Salesperson-driver/route person
• Telegrapher
• Warehouse/materials
• Yard clerk

Arithmetic Index

• Claims auditor
• Electrician
• Keypunch operator
• Maintenance mechanic
• Telephone service representative
• Warehouse/materials handler
• Plumber
• Telegrapher
• Yard clerk

General Notes On The RAI Tools

The RAI 12 would be most appropriate for English speaking individuals. However, many bilingual or multi-lingual individuals may have sufficient English language skills to be effectively assessed with the RAI 12.  It does help differentiate level of English language comprehension with respect to conventional US grade level difficulty.

If the purpose is to establish whether someone is able to understand and handle college education lectures and assignments in English, the RAI 12 would at least give an indication of poorer proficiency in English. If it is used to allow or deny access to the training program there should be a close link established between success in the program and minimum reading and arithmetic proficiencies first.

If the goal is to help develop or improve English skills, individuals who have little English language facility or comprehension would probably be better assessed using a tool like the TOEFEL first to establish their language facility.

Regarding learning disabilities, there are many kinds of LD.  Some people with learning disabilities are still able to complete an assessment like the RAI 12.  It could be useful in a more limited way, but results should be interpreted cautiously.  Accommodations may be beneficial, but aren’t always simple for cognitive measures like the RAI 12.






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