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NAEP 2021 student data collection postponed until 2022.

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Educator Resources

The National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP) is a resource that teachers, principals, and other educators can use to improve educational outcomes. From its assessment frameworks, to its innovative assessment questions, and its data-rich results, NAEP provides educators a way to evaluate student achievement.

I think the online tools that NAEP makes available are really beneficial in the classroom. The Questions Tool gives us the ability to pull out a retired question and use it with our current curriculum and see how our students compare with students on a national level.

Eleni Ganelli, St. Andrew’s Episcopal School, Edgewater, MD

NAEP in the Classroom

Sample NAEP questions featured on the NAEP Questions Tool.

Released NAEP assessment questions can be used as a helpful educational resource in the classroom. You can use the NAEP Questions Tool to create and customize tests, and to see how your students’ performance compares nationally on specific test items.

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Using NAEP Frameworks: Curricula Planning and Instruction

An assessment framework is like a blueprint; it lays out the basic design of the assessment by describing the content that should be tested and the types of assessment questions that should be included in NAEP. Frameworks attempt to answer the question, “What skills should be assessed on NAEP at grades 4, 8, and 12?”

This information may serve as a roadmap to help teachers and curriculum planners

  • evaluate and revise current state and/or district standards, and
  • evaluate classroom instruction and assessment focus on each cognitive level.

NAEP Performance Scales and Achievement Levels: Grades 4, 8, 12

NAEP Item Maps.

Explore what students should know and be able to do in grades 4, 8, and 12 to reach different achievement levels on the NAEP scale. You can see what specific knowledge and skills correspond to different NAEP performance levels (Basic, Proficient, and Advanced) by exploring NAEP item maps. Item maps answer the question, "What does it mean for students to be at Basic, Proficient, or Advanced in terms of what they know and can do?"

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How Do I See Data for My District?

District Profiles tool displaying select district performance compared to the nation.

Use the District Profiles Tool to compare the performance of students in urban districts to public school students in large cities (cities with populations of 250,000 or more). Results include mathematics, reading, science, and writing for grades 4 and 8.

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student_experiencestudent_experiencesstudent_experiencesstudent_experiencesstudent_experiencesStudent Experience and NAEP Performance

As an educator, I find the contextual information that NAEP provides to be particularly valuable. It helps me take a closer look at the factors related to student achievement across the country.

Ann M. Finch, Dover Middle School, Dover, AR

As part of an assessment, students, teachers, and school administrators also answer a questionnaire about their demographic characteristics, opportunities to learn in and outside of the classroom, and educational experiences in and out of school. Many factors may influence student achievement, including
  • educational policies and practices,
  • available instructional resources, and
  • demographic characteristics of the student body

Although comparisons are made in students’ performance on NAEP based on demographic characteristics and educational experiences, the comparisons cannot be used to establish a cause-and-effect relationship between the characteristic or experience and achievement. However, educators can view results from the student, teachers, and school questionnaires, as well as average scores on the assessment.

Last updated 20 October 2020 (DS)