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Digest of Education Statistics: 2006
Digest of Education Statistics: 2006

NCES 2007-017
July 2007


Table 112. Average reading scale score, by age and amount of time spent on reading and homework: Selected years, 1984 through 2004 
Time spent on reading
and homework
9-year-olds 13-year-olds 17-year-olds
1984 1994 1996 1999 2004 1984 1994 1996 1999 2004 1984 1994 1996 1999 2004
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16
  Average scale score
Materials read a few times a year or more                                                            
Poems 211 (1.9) 210 (2.9) 215 (2.8) 213 (2.7) (†) 260 (1.2) 261 (2.3) 262 (2.5) 263 (1.9) (†) 290 (1.5) 293 (2.1) 294 (2.8) 292 (2.6) (†)
Plays 211 (2.5) 207 (3.0) 214 (4.1) 211 (3.7) (†) 260 (1.3) 263 (2.1) 262 (2.4) 264 (2.3) (†) 290 (1.7) 294 (2.4) 293 (2.3) 294 (2.7) (†)
Biographies 213 (2.4) 210 (3.4) 220 (3.2) 215 (3.0) (†) 261 (1.3) 261 (2.1) 262 (2.3) 263 (2.1) (†) 292 (1.4) 293 (2.4) 293 (2.3) 291 (2.8) (†)
Science books 212 (1.6) 211 (2.6) 214 (2.0) 213 (2.1) (†) 259 (1.2) 260 (2.1) 261 (2.2) 261 (1.7) (†) 289 (1.4) 293 (2.4) 290 (2.2) 291 (2.3) (†)
Books about other times 211 (1.7) 211 (2.6) 213 (2.3) 213 (2.5) (†) 259 (1.1) 260 (2.2) 262 (2.2) 262 (2.1) (†) 289 (1.4) 293 (2.3) 292 (2.8) 292 (2.0) (†)
                                                             
Frequency of reading for fun                                                            
Daily 214 (1.1) 215 (2.3) 213 (2.0) 215 (2.4) 220 (1.5) 264 (1.4) 272 (3.2) 269 (3.3) 272 (3.2) 271 (2.8) 297 (1.5) 302 (4.2) 302 (5.2) 301 (4.9) 305 (3.7)
Weekly 212 (1.7) 214 (3.1) 212 (2.6) 215 (2.6) 224 (2.2) 255 (1.4) 255 (3.1) 258 (3.2) 263 (3.2) 261 (2.3) 290 (1.7) 286 (4.1) 293 (4.0) 289 (2.9) 288 (4.3)
Monthly 204 (3.3) 213 (5.8) 210 (5.0) 211 (4.2) 216 (4.6) 255 (2.1) 255 (5.7) 259 (4.6) 260 (3.7) 256 (3.9) 290 (1.8) 286 (4.5) 290 (5.6) 286 (4.8) 287 (4.7)
Yearly 197 (4.2) (†) (†) (†) 209 (4.6) 252 (3.6) 252 (5.4) (†) 253 (4.4) (†) 279 (2.7) 281 (8.2) 285 (5.6) 283 (4.4) 272 (5.0)
Never 198 (2.7) 193 (3.9) 199 (4.3) 195 (3.3) 203 (4.4) 239 (2.5) 237 (5.1) 236 (4.8) 242 (5.3) 236 (3.9) 269 (2.4) 258 (5.2) 270 (5.0) 262 (5.0) 268 (5.8)
                                                             
Reading of books, newspapers, and magazines                                                            
Yearly/monthly 207 (1.6) 206 (3.8) 208 (3.1) 209 (2.9) (†) 244 (1.7) 245 (3.7) 249 (3.4) 252 (2.9) (†) 270 (2.0) 279 (4.0) 275 (4.5) 276 (3.8) (†)
Weekly 219 (2.5) 216 (3.7) 221 (4.7) 220 (3.5) (†) 261 (1.6) 262 (2.6) 262 (3.0) 261 (3.3) (†) 288 (1.5) 295 (2.8) 294 (3.2) 292 (2.2) (†)
Daily 211 (3.8) (†) (†) 214 (6.3) (†) 269 (2.2) 275 (3.9) 270 (3.4) 271 (4.0) (†) 299 (1.9) 296 (4.0) 295 (4.8) 299 (6.5) (†)
                                                             
Time spent on homework                                                            
None 212 (0.9) 213 (2.0) 210 (1.9) 210 (1.9) 217 (2.0) 254 (1.0) 250 (1.7) 254 (1.3) 251 (2.0) 248 (1.7) 276 (0.8) 273 (2.3) 274 (1.9) 275 (2.3) 270 (2.0)
Didn't do assignment 199 (2.1) 200 (4.3) 196 (5.2) 204 (4.4) 204 (4.1) 247 (1.7) 243 (5.6) 249 (3.3) 249 (4.2) 245 (3.4) 287 (1.4) 285 (2.1) 281 (2.2) 282 (3.1) 279 (2.7)
Less than 1 hour 217 (0.8) 212 (1.4) 215 (1.0) 214 (1.5) 221 (1.0) 261 (0.6) 261 (1.3) 258 (1.6) 262 (1.2) 261 (1.2) 290 (0.9) 288 (1.6) 289 (1.5) 291 (2.3) 287 (1.6)
1 to 2 hours 216 (1.4) 214 (3.0) 219 (2.1) 215 (3.2) 221 (2.3) 267 (0.8) 268 (1.7) 266 (1.6) 269 (1.6) 268 (1.6) 296 (0.8) 297 (1.7) 296 (2.1) 296 (2.0) 295 (1.7)
More than 2 hours 201 (1.9) 193 (6.1) 199 (4.5) 197 (3.5) 207 (3.2) 265 (1.2) 270 (2.4) 268 (2.3) 269 (3.0) 272 (2.0) 303 (1.4) 306 (3.1) 307 (3.4) 300 (2.8) 304 (2.4)
  Percent
Materials read a few times a year or more                                                            
Poems 70 (1.5) 62 (2.3) 60 (1.9) 64 (2.4) (†) 68 (1.3) 79 (1.4) 80 (1.9) 77 (1.6) (†) 76 (1.1) 85 (2.2) 80 (1.8) 85 (2.0) (†)
Plays 56 (1.4) 45 (2.2) 42 (2.3) 44 (2.2) (†) 59 (1.4) 63 (2.3) 67 (2.1) 61 (1.8) (†) 63 (1.0) 70 (2.1) 67 (1.6) 72 (2.0) (†)
Biographies 45 (1.5) 47 (2.1) 46 (2.4) 49 (3.0) (†) 62 (1.3) 68 (1.7) 65 (2.6) 72 (2.1) (†) 59 (1.2) 69 (1.8) 66 (1.7) 70 (1.9) (†)
Science books 84 (1.3) 87 (1.8) 83 (2.2) 80 (1.6) (†) 90 (1.1) 92 (1.4) 90 (1.9) 89 (1.2) (†) 70 (1.1) 84 (1.9) 82 (2.0) 84 (1.3) (†)
Books about other times 79 (1.2) 79 (2.0) 78 (1.6) 79 (1.9) (†) 83 (1.1) 83 (1.8) 84 (1.8) 84 (1.3) (†) 81 (0.9) 82 (2.0) 81 (1.9) 81 (2.0) (†)
Frequency of reading for fun                                                            
Total 100 (†) 100 (†) 100 (†) 100 (†) 100 (†) 100 (†) 100 (†) 100 (†) 100 (†) 100 (†) 100 (†) 100 (†) 100 (†) 100 (†) 100 (†)
Daily 53 (1.0) 58 (1.6) 54 (1.9) 54 (1.6) 54 (1.6) 35 (1.0) 32 (1.8) 32 (1.9) 28 (1.7) 30 (2.0) 31 (0.8) 30 (2.6) 23 (2.0) 25 (1.7) 22 (2.0)
Weekly 28 (0.8) 25 (1.5) 27 (1.8) 26 (1.5) 26 (1.2) 35 (1.2) 32 (2.1) 31 (2.1) 36 (1.7) 34 (1.9) 33 (1.1) 31 (1.9) 32 (2.7) 28 (2.7) 30 (1.9)
Monthly 7 (0.6) 5 (0.6) 8 (1.0) 6 (0.6) 7 (0.5) 14 (0.8) 14 (1.7) 15 (1.4) 17 (1.6) 15 (1.2) 17 (0.5) 15 (1.5) 17 (1.5) 19 (1.7) 15 (1.6)
Yearly 3 (0.3) 3 (0.6) 3 (0.5) 4 (0.7) 5 (0.7) 7 (0.5) 10 (1.2) 9 (1.2) 10 (1.2) 9 (1.1) 10 (0.5) 12 (1.5) 12 (1.6) 12 (1.4) 14 (1.5)
Never 9 (0.5) 9 (0.8) 8 (0.8) 10 (0.8) 8 (0.8) 8 (0.6) 12 (1.7) 13 (1.5) 9 (1.4) 13 (1.3) 9 (0.6) 12 (1.4) 16 (2.1) 16 (2.4) 19 (1.8)
                                                             
Reading of books, newspapers, and magazines                                                            
Total 100 (†) 100 (†) 100 (†) 100 (†) (†) 100 (†) 100 (†) 100 (†) 100 (†) (†) 100 (†) 100 (†) 100 (†) 100 (†) (†)
Yearly/monthly 59 (1.5) 64 (1.8) 67 (2.3) 63 (2.6) (†) 30 (1.5) 34 (2.5) 32 (2.6) 32 (2.3) (†) 20 (1.0) 22 (1.7) 25 (2.1) 26 (2.1) (†)
Weekly 31 (1.5) 27 (1.8) 22 (1.9) 27 (2.4) (†) 49 (1.1) 47 (2.5) 47 (2.2) 49 (2.2) (†) 53 (1.2) 55 (2.3) 52 (2.6) 52 (2.2) (†)
Daily 11 (0.9) 9 (1.3) 10 (1.2) 11 (1.2) (†) 21 (1.1) 19 (1.7) 21 (1.7) 19 (1.9) (†) 27 (1.3) 23 (1.8) 23 (1.9) 21 (2.1) (†)
                                                             
Time spent on homework                                                            
Total 100 (†) 100 (†) 100 (†) 100 (†) 100 (†) 100 (†) 100 (†) 100 (†) 100 (†) 100 (†) 100 (†) 100 (†) 100 (†) 100 (†) 100 (†)
None 35 (1.3) 32 (2.1) 26 (1.6) 26 (1.6) 21 (1.5) 22 (0.7) 23 (1.4) 22 (1.8) 24 (1.2) 20 (1.3) 22 (0.9) 23 (1.4) 23 (1.4) 26 (1.0) 26 (1.0)
Didn't do assignment 4 (0.3) 4 (0.4) 4 (0.3) 4 (0.3) 3 (0.3) 4 (0.2) 6 (0.6) 5 (0.5) 5 (0.4) 6 (0.4) 11 (0.3) 11 (0.6) 13 (0.6) 13 (0.7) 13 (0.6)
Less than 1 hour 41 (1.0) 48 (1.7) 53 (1.5) 53 (1.4) 59 (1.4) 36 (0.6) 34 (1.0) 37 (1.2) 37 (1.4) 40 (1.2) 26 (0.4) 27 (0.9) 28 (0.9) 26 (1.0) 28 (0.7)
1 to 2 hours 13 (0.4) 11 (0.7) 13 (0.7) 12 (0.7) 13 (0.6) 29 (0.5) 28 (1.0) 27 (1.2) 26 (1.0) 26 (1.0) 27 (0.5) 26 (1.2) 24 (1.0) 23 (0.8) 22 (0.9)
More than 2 hours 6 (0.2) 4 (0.4) 4 (0.3) 5 (0.5) 5 (0.3) 9 (0.3) 9 (0.7) 8 (0.9) 8 (0.8) 8 (0.5) 13 (0.6) 13 (0.9) 11 (0.7) 12 (0.9) 11 (0.6)
—Not available.
† Not applicable.
‡ Reporting standards not met.
NOTE: The NAEP reading scores have been evaluated at certain performance levels. Scale ranges from 0 to 500. Students scoring 150 (or higher) are able to follow brief written directions and carry out simple, discrete reading tasks. Students scoring 200 are able to understand, combine ideas, and make inferences based on short uncomplicated passages about specific or sequentially related information. Students scoring 250 are able to search for specific information, interrelate ideas, and make generalizations about litera­ture, science, and social studies materials. Students scoring 300 are able to find, understand, summarize, and explain relatively com­plicated literary and informational material. Includes public and private schools. Excludes persons not enrolled in school and those who were unable to be tested due to limited proficiency in English or due to a disability. Detail may not sum to totals because of rounding. Standard errors appear in parentheses.
SOURCE: U.S. Department of Education, National Center for Education Statistics, National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP), NAEP Trends in Academic Progress, 1996 and 1999; and NAEP Data Explorer (http://nces.ed.gov/nationsreportcard/nde/), retrieved July 2005. (This table was prepared February 2006.)