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Selecting the Samples for the NAEP Arts Assessment

The samples for the 2008 arts assessment were selected using a multistage sampling design that involved sampling students from selected schools within selected geographic areas across the country. The sample design had the following stages:

  1. selection of geographic areas (a county, group of counties, or metropolitan statistical area);
  2. selection of schools (public and nonpublic) within the selected areas; and
  3. selection of intact classrooms of students (for the music and visual arts assessments) within each sampled school. To ensure random sampling of students with training in each arts discipline, criteria for sampling classrooms specified that the subject taught in each classroom selected should not be the subject being assessed (e.g., classes sampled for the visual arts assessment could not be visual arts classrooms; classes sampled for the music assessment could not be music classrooms).

Each selected school that participated in the assessment and each student assessed represents a portion of the population of interest. Results are weighted to make appropriate inferences between the student samples and the respective populations from which they are drawn. Sampling weights are adjusted for the disproportionate representation of some groups in the selected sample. This includes the oversampling of schools with high concentrations of students from certain racial/ethnic groups and the lower sampling rates of students who attend very small schools.

School officials advised assessment staff on students with disabilities and English language learners (SD/ELL) accommodations necessary for individual students sampled for an assessment in a given arts discipline. Students for whom recommended SD/ELL accommodations could not be made were classified as ineligible for the assessment.

View the participation rates for the 2008 arts assessment.

Last updated 28 May 2009 (RF)