Page Title:
Skip to main content
Skip Navigation
NAEP Assessment Sample Design → NAEP 2010 Sample Design

NAEP Technical DocumentationNAEP 2010 Sample Design


Selection of Primary Sampling Units

2010 Public School Sample

2010 Private School Sample

School and Student Participation Results

The NAEP 2010 sample design consisted of a nationally representative sample of students that met the following objectives:

  • operational assessments in civics, geography, and U.S. history at grades 4, 8, and 12; 
  • a writing pilot test at grades 4, 8, and 12; grade 4 was paper & pencil-delivered and grades 8 and 12 were computer-delivered; and
  • a special accessible booklets pilot test at grades 4 and 8.

This was accomplished by designing separate sample components for public and private schools. The selected samples were based on a three-stage sample design:

  • selection of primary sampling units (PSUs);
  • selection of schools within strata; and
  • selection of students within schools.

The samples of schools were selected with probability proportional to a measure of size based on the estimated fourth-, eighth-, and twelfth-grade enrollment in the schools.

The target population included all students in public and private schools, including Bureau of Indian Education (BIE) and Department of Defense Domestic Dependent Elementary and Secondary Schools (DDESS), who were enrolled in fourth, eighth, and twelfth grades, respectively, at the time of assessment.

The NAEP 2010 Sample Design Technical Documentation comprises information for the operational assessments.

The table below shows the target student sample sizes of assessed students for each sample.

Target student sample sizes, by assessment subject, grade, and school type: 2010
School type Grade Subject
Civics Geography U.S. history
SOURCE: U.S. Department of Education, Institute of Education Sciences, National Center for Education Statistics, National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP), 2010.
Public 4 5,400 5,400 5,400
8 7,200 7,200 9,000
12 7,200 7,200 9,000
Private 4 600 600 600
8 800 800 1,000
12 800 800 1,000

To reduce the burden on any particular school, efforts were made to minimize the overlap of the 2010 sample PSUs with the PSUs selected for the 2008 arts sample, the 2008 long-term trend sample, and the 2009 science sample.

Last updated 17 March 2016 (GF)