Tests are widely used to perform the assessment of the academic success of the students of different levels. The first evidence dates back to 1219, when the formal test exam (in oral form) took place in the university of Bologna. Written tests became a university practice in 16th century. Nowadays the standardized tests are widely used in many countries as the official way of school and university-level knowledge assessment as well as the certification of a knowledge in some field. For example the well-known tests GRE (Graduate Record Examination) and SAT (originally stood for Scholastic Assessment Test, but now officially doesn't stand for anything), the results of which are accepted by American universities for making decisions about accepting the students.
Surprisingly enough, there is another academic use of cognitive assessment as well, which may seem opposite to the one, described above. This one deals with the obtaining the knowledge rather then evaluating. It is known that the knowledge stays better if it is acquired from the experiment. So the sample cognitive tests may be used for the students, who learn the cognitive abilities to set themselves closer to the "roots". There are a few packages of cognitive tests for students, like CogLab (http://coglab.wadsworth.com/) with an exhaustive student guide through all the tests with the notes and assignments on such topics as perception, neurocognition, sensory memory, imagery, judgment, etc.
Ivan Tugoy, 2003
And if you are able to read in Russian, please also check www.effecton.ru