Each of the Common Core Standards contains a unique code that makes it easy to reference for organizational purposes. Each code contains four aspects that indicate specific information: subject, grade level, strand, and standard number within each grade.

  • Subject: Each of the codes starts with one of four subject labels that indicate whether it is a math content standard, math practice standard, English language arts standard, or literacy standard. For example, a standard that starts with "CCSS.Math.Content" is a math content standard, while "CCSS.Math.Practice" is a standard for mathematical practice. The English language arts standards and literacy standards begin with "CCSS.ELA-Literacy." Although these two sets of standards start the same way, the coding for the strands enables you to tell them apart.

  • Grade level: Another aspect of the code indicates the grade level (or subject in high school) of each standard. For example, "CCSS.Math.Content.8" indicates a math standard for Grade 8. In the English language arts and literacy standards, the grade level comes after the strand coding.

  • Strand: The strands, such as "Operations and Algebraic Thinking" or "Reading: Literature" are abbreviated to a few letters, such as OA and RL, respectively. For example, "CCSS.Math.Content.5.NBT" indicates a math content standard in Grade 5 for "Number and Operations in Base Ten." The coding "CCSS.ELA-Literacy.RI.8" is found in the English language arts standards for "Reading Informational Text" in Grade 8. The strands depend on what grade your child is in, but a quick look at the standards shows you the ones to look out for.

  • Standard number: The final part of the code for each standard indicates the order of the standards in each grade. For example, "CCSS.ELA-Literacy.RL.6.3" indicates the third English language arts standard for "Reading: Literature" in Grade 6.