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The National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP)—a congressionally mandated large-scale assessment administered by the National Center for Education Statistics (NCES)—consists of print and digital assessments in various subject areas. Three of these subjects—mathematics, reading, and science—are assessed most frequently and reported at the state and select district level, usually for grades 4 and 8. The Nation’s Report Card provides results on student performance based on gender, race/ethnicity, public or nonpublic school, teacher experience, and hundreds of other factors.

Assessment Frameworks

Each NAEP assessment is based on an organizing framework, similar to a blueprint, that is developed by education and assessment experts. Frameworks provide information about the content to be assessed in each subject and what knowledge and skills are appropriate for students being assessed in those subjects. The frameworks also offer insights about how to measure skills and student achievement in innovative ways.

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Intended Meaning of NAEP

NAEP results describe educational achievement for groups of students at a single point in time, progress in K-12 education for groups of students over time, and differential educational achievement and progress among jurisdictions and subpopulations. Consult this useful statement to learn more about the intended meaning of NAEP results.

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specialSpecial Reports

NCES conducts secondary analyses of NAEP results. These studies focus on unique populations of students, including students of different racial/ethnic groups, ages, grades, and those in different types of schools and geographic regions. To gain a clearer picture of these unique populations, secondary analyses may involve additional data collection. NCES also conducts a number of special NAEP studies that involve the evaluation of technical procedures, statistical models for comparison-based analyses, and other methodologies.

Last updated 03 April 2024 (DS)