While there's plenty of existing material and resources to help you decide on the next techie to hire, I could find very little for assessing the skill of children/teenagers at programming. This is the only proposal that I've found, but it's been created by a private company.

My question regards standards for general knowledge in programming, so there are no specific language requirements - it could be based on pseudo-code.

What high-quality standards are out there?

  • $\begingroup$ Could you clarify whether you want to measure how well students have learned material in a class they took together or if you're trying to measure general programming ability/aptitude? $\endgroup$ Commented Jun 2, 2017 at 20:51
  • $\begingroup$ @EllenSpertus Done. $\endgroup$
    – nightcod3r
    Commented Jun 2, 2017 at 20:56
  • 1
    $\begingroup$ Why would it be any different between a 17 year old and a 30 year old? If you can code, you can code. $\endgroup$
    – Ryan Nutt
    Commented Jun 2, 2017 at 21:09
  • $\begingroup$ So, you are looking for standards and tests? $\endgroup$
    – Ben I.
    Commented Jun 2, 2017 at 21:34
  • $\begingroup$ @RyanNutt Typically these tests go in the direction of showing your knowledge in a concrete programming language, administering a system and the like. $\endgroup$
    – nightcod3r
    Commented Jun 2, 2017 at 23:35

2 Answers 2


There are four places I would suggest looking if your concern is the K-12 environment:

These would probably be the best places to start. I suggest working your way from the top down since the standards as listed progress in what I see as an increasing order of complexity/rigor.


In addition to what Peter wrote, the American Computer Science League (ACSL) has wonderful pseudo-code based standards for high-school age students.


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