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NAEP Technical DocumentationNAEP Data Collection


Study Design and the Data Collection Plan

Data Collection Field Staff

Recruitment of Sampled Schools

Preparations for the Assessments

Conduct of Assessment Sessions

Completion of Assessment-Related Activities

Quality Control of Assessment Activities


The National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP) is the only ongoing, nationally representative measure of what the nation's students know and can do in various subject areas. Since 1969, NAEP has provided valuable information on student achievement to policymakers, educators, and the general public. NAEP assessment results, often referred to as The Nation's Report Card, provide a clear picture of student academic progress over time and help decision makers to implement policies and programs that serve the needs of the nation's students.

Because so much is at stake, NAEP requires the highest levels of consistency and accuracy in its data collection activities. NAEP fosters the reliability and comparability of results across the nation by stressing the following:

  • standardization of field procedures through rigorous staff training and the use of well-defined assessment protocols so that the NAEP administration experience is uniform across schools;
  • creation of a testing environment in which students can focus on the assessment and do their best with the fewest possible distractions;
  • provision of testing accommodations to maximize student inclusion;
  • incorporation of multiple layers of quality control to promote the accuracy of records and results; and
  • protection of the security of all testing materials and the anonymity of all participants.

Last updated 28 November 2022 (SK)