Students sit for NAPLAN tests

Education minister Simon Birmingham says NAPLAN tests are here to stay despite some opposition

More than a million Australian students will sit for NAPLAN tests on Tuesday, with one in five swapping pencils for computers for the first time.

NAPLAN tests the reading, writing and maths abilities of children in Years Three, Five, Seven and Nine, providing valuable information to improve education across the country.

The move to an online system is planned to take three years.

It's natural students will feel anxious about the tests, but Robert Randall from the Australian Curriculum, Assessment and Reporting Authority says there's no need to.

"Children should be reminded that it's not a big deal, that it's a short assessment taken only four times during their schooling," he said.

Education unions say the online rollout should be abandoned because many schools don't have the capacity or resources to cope or prepare students.

But Education Minister Simon Birmingham says going online is a "groundbreaking event" in terms of making NAPLAN better for students and more useful for teachers.

The federal government is considering terms of reference for a possible review of NAPLAN.