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NAEP Technical DocumentationDistribution of Materials for the 2018 Assessment

The materials distribution staff order, package, and distribute session and bulk materials to the sampling design data collection administrators for the paper-based assessment (PBA). Bulk materials and student log-in cards for the digitally based assessment (DBA) are also sent to administrators.

The student booklets for PBA are identified with a unique identification number through bar code technology. Once barcoded, the booklets are spiraled and bundled for distribution based on the spiraling design provided by the design analysis reporting contractor. Each spiral type is based on the grade, subject, and sample sizes. Estimated number of sessions provided by the sampling design data collection contractor is used to determine the number of bundles needed. A header sheet is used to identify the type of bundle, the student booklet forms assigned to the bundle, and a unique bundle number. The barcode on the header sheet and student booklets in the bundle are scanned. Reports are run to verify the correct booklet forms are in the bundle and in the correct order based on the spiraling design. The bundle(s) are then assigned to each school and session. This information is provided to the sampling design contractor.

Virtual barcodes are created for the DBA sessions based on a spiraling design provided by the design analysis reporting contractor. The number of barcodes needed are based on the same process used for the PBA sessions. Virtual bundles are created and assigned to schools and sessions. The information is sent back to the data collection contractor and loaded into the preassessment visit system. The barcodes assigned to the students are printed on student login cards and sent to the sampling design data collection administrators.

Using the spiraling design, staff grouped subject-specific ancillary items i.e. rulers (PBA) and science hands-on-task kits (DBA) into sets that are appropriately sized for distribution for the PBA and DBA sessions.

The PBA sessions and bulk materials are shipped three weeks before administration to allow for the sampling design data collection staff to review the materials and order additional materials if needed.

Additional student booklets, accommodation booklets, and miscellaneous materials such as subject ancillaries (rulers and science hands-on kits), pencils, and timers are ordered through the materials distribution staff's additional orders online system.

A shipment tracking system is available to the data collection administrators to track their shipments from the materials distribution contractor. This system indicates:

  • the date that materials are shipped,
  • tracking numbers assigned to their shipments,
  • the date to expect their shipments, and
  • a place to record the date the materials arrived.

The online materials tracking system is also used to record when the paper-based session materials are sent back and arrive at the materials distribution contractor's processing center.

Number of paper-based (PBA) sessions distributed, by session type: 2018
Session type (subjects)Number of sessions distributed
Geography and U.S. history - public and private schools430
Civics - public and private schools360
NOTE: Session counts are rounded to the nearest ten. Only grade 8 participated in the paper-based assessment in 2018.
SOURCE: U.S. Department of Education, Institute of Education Sciences, National Center for Education Statistics, National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP), 2018 Assessment.

Last updated 14 December 2022 (ML)