Mathematical literacy is an important skill that is gaining the attention of mathematics educators. Students are increasingly challenged on standardized assessments to read, create, use, and comprehend numerous mathematical representations as a way of demonstrating mathematical literacy. Test items assessing algebra concepts from the Texas Assessment of Knowledge and Skills (TAKS) test for Grades 3 through 8 were used for the study. The study examined the frequency and categories of external representations used to present and solve assessment items. The analysis showed a heavy emphasis on verbal representations even though algebra items were to use verbal, numerical, graphical, and symbolic representations. The variety of representations on assessments has implications for professional development opportunities for mathematics educators.