What is TABE?

The Test of Adult Basic Education, TABE®, is a renowned, academic-based, nationwide assessment that provides a valid and reliable measurement of basic skills that adults need to succeed, both on the job and in life. For 50 years, TABE has been a well-respected assessment tool for use in adult education. 

TABE 11 and 12 is the latest edition of the Data Recognition Corporation's assessment for adult learners, aligned with College and Career Readiness (CCR) standards, and complies with today’s rigorous Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act (WIOA) regulations.

Subject Areas

  • Language
  • Mathematics
  • Reading

Content Levels

TABE offers five levels of assessment covering material from K-12 content areas. 

  • Level L (K-1)
  • Level E (2-3)
  • Level M (4-6)
  • Level D (7-8)
  • Level A (9-12)

Maximum Allowable Times

Level Reading Language Math
E 100 minutes 55 minutes 65 minutes
M 100 minutes 55 minutes 65 minutes
D 100 minutes 55 minutes 65 minutes
A 100 minutes 55 minutes 65 minutes

Retake Attempts        

Students must wait six weeks after the first attempt and everyone must wait six months after all subsequent attempts.


The fee for non-students is $20. There is no fee for students who are currently enrolled in a career and technical certificate course with a basic skills exit requirement.

Basic Skills Requirement for Career and Technical Certificate Programs

Students entering into most technical credit programs are required to complete the TABE. Florida Administrative Code 6A-10.040 requires students of most career and technical certificate programs to meet specific grade-level exit requirements in mathematics, language and reading before being awarded a certificate of completion. PHSC administers the Test of Adult Basic Education (TABE) to assess mastery of these basic skills. The TABE Exit Requirements for Career and Technical Certificate Programs chart below identifies the basic skills requirements for each program.

Program TABE Level Math Language Reading
Dental Assisting D or A 10 10 10
Health Unit Coordinator/Monitor Tech D or A 9 10 10
Medical Administrative Specialist D or A  10 10 10
Medical Assistant D or A 10 10 10
Medical Coder/Biller A 9 11 11
Medical Record Transcribing A 9 11 11
Paramedic D or A 10 10 10
Pharmacy Technician A 11 10 10
Practical Nursing A 11 11 11
Surgical Technology A 10 11 11
Welding Technology & Welding Technology Advanced D or A 9 9 9

This chart lists the TABE basic skills exit requirements for career certificate programs of 450 hours or more. PHSC administers and accepts only the most current forms of the TABE. The TABE level listed next to each program is the appropriate level to be administered and only the designated level of TABE will be accepted for each program. TABE Level D may be used to meet scores of 9 and 10; however, Level A should be used to meet a program’s basic skill requirement of 11 or higher.


The following students are exempt from taking the TABE:

  • Students who possess a college degree at the Associate of Applied Science level or higher
  • Students who are exempt from common placement testing or have met the cut scores on any of the tests found in the Student Placement and Testing Chart
  • Students who have successfully completed developmental education requirements
  • Students who have attained a minimum score of 145 on the appropriate sub-tests of the 2014 GED
  • Students with "C" or higher grade on both college-level English and mathematics courses
  • Students who have passed a state, national or industry certification or licensure examination that is identified on the most current Florida Department of Education’s Basic Skills and Licensure Exemption List
  • An adult student who is enrolled in an apprenticeship program that is registered with the Department of Education in accordance with Chapter 446, Florida Statute

No student is exempt from these requirements because of language deficiencies. Limited English Proficient (LEP) students shall be given English language instruction and remediation in basic skills as needed to improve proficiency.