The scoring guide provides the basic guidelines for scoring each NAEP constructed-response item. The scoring guide defines the number of score categories for the item. An explanation of each category is provided, along with examples of response types that would fall within each category. Some scoring guides may include additional content notes to guide the scoring of that item.
NAEP scoring guides are specific to each constructed-response item (except for Writing which uses a general guide for each type of prompt). In addition to the item-specific scoring guides, NAEP also uses General Scoring Guidelines for each subject area. These General Scoring Guidelines provide broad scoring principles for each subject area. The general guidelines apply to all items across a given subject area, but may in rare cases be superceded by information on the item-specific scoring guide.
NAEP also uses various Condition Codes for unscoreable student responses. These responses do not attempt to address the content of the item. Some examples are: student responses that are illegible, responses left blank, "I don't know", etc. The same Condition Codes are used across all NAEP subject areas.