Duke TIP

EXPLORE® Test: Above-Level Testing

Above-level EXPLORE® testing offers insight into students academic abilities by providing personal measures in English, math, reading, and science and invaluable testing experience. Students who already excel on grade-specific tests may benefit from this above-level test (traditionally given in the eighth grade) which will provide helpful insight into their level of ability and their depth of knowledge.

Though Duke TIP recommends taking advantage of this opportunity, testing is optional and is not required for participation in any of our talent search benefits or educational offerings.  

All enrolled fourth through sixth grade participants in the Duke TIP 4th–6th Grade Talent Search are eligible to register for and to take the EXPLORE test once each school year. Parents and testers should expect this test to be challenging.

The EXPLORE consists of four 30 minute tests measuring aptitude in mathematics, science, English and reading. Total testing time exclusive of instructions and breaks is about 2 1/2 hours.


Test registration begins September 1 for current participants who enrolled previously. Students enrolling for the 2014-2015 Talent Search program may register for EXPLORE beginning October 1.  

Dates and Fees

Dates and fees are posted in mid-August.

Parents wishing to seek a waiver of testing fees should be aware that a very limited number of testing waivers are available each year and that they are awarded on a first-in basis.  
Parents waiting until late in the registration period to apply may not be assigned to their preferred testing date or testing site.

Score Reports

Score reports are mailed to address on file by ACT six weeks after the test date.  Parents are responsible for communication of change of address information to Duke TIP at (919) 668-9100 and ACT at (319) 337-1369.


Duke TIP EXPLORE testers who achieve a composite score at or above the 99th percentile are honored for their outstanding achievement at a recognition ceremony in May or June.

Special Accommodations

ACT provides forms and determines deadlines for special testing accommodations. Testers requesting this service must complete the accommodations form, including the necessary documentation, and then send directly to ACT. Contact Duke TIP at (919) 668-9100 with questions.