After much exploration in the early 1960s, the idea of a national assessment gained impetus in 1963. NAEP planning began in 1964, with a grant from the Carnegie Corporation to set up the Exploratory Committee for the Assessment of Progress in Education (ECAPE) in June. This was followed by the appointment of the Technical Advisory Committee (TAC) in 1965.
The first national assessments were held in 1969. Voluntary assessments for the states began in 1990 on a trial basis, were made a permanent feature of NAEP every two years. In 2002, selected urban districts participated in the state-level assessments on a trial basis, and continue as the Trial Urban District Assessment.
In 2009, a new framework for the NAEP science assessment began a move to computer-based assessment, when part of the student sample completed interactive computer tasks. In 2011, the NAEP writing assessment for grades 8 and 12 was administered entirely on computer. The new NAEP technology and engineering literacy assessment in 2014 is also entirely on computer.
The development of a successful NAEP program has involved many, including researchers, state education officials, contractors, policymakers, students, and teachers. Explore the documents below to learn about the inception and evolution of NAEP:
Learn more about NAEP.