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The Nation's Report Card

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Sample questions in reading

Grade 4
 Grade 8

Test Yourself...then see how the students responded to the same questions on NAEP. The following grade 8 extended constructed-response question asks students to describe the character traits of a person described in an article. See the full text of the grade 8 reading passage.

Student responses were scored according to a four-level scoring guide as "Extensive," "Essential," "Partial", or "Unsatisfactory." The sample response below is an example of an "Extensive" response.

The percentages below indicate how each jurisdiction performed on the question.

Percentage of responses rated "Full comprehension." Nation: 31, Large central city: 27, Atlanta: 23, Austin: 23, Boston: 27, Charlotte: 29, Chicago: 32, Cleveland: 25, District of Columbia: 25, Houston: 21, Los Angeles: 18, New York City: 28, San Diego: 26.The sample short constructed-response question is as follows. Choose two things Ellie Lammer did and explain what those things tell about her. Use examples from the article to support your answer. The student wrote the following: "Ellie Lammer got cheated out of her money, and then decided that she wasn't going to give up, she was going to do experiments and take this problem to the next level. This shows perserverance, because she chose to keep going with the problem even though it was time-consuming, to help others. She also chose to prove the meters wrong by timing them using a stop watch. This shows intelligence, because she knew what methods to use in order to prove the meters inaccurate."

See more about this question in the NAEP Questions Tool.

View this question, at score 318, on a map of NAEP reading items.

Learn more about what the reading assessment measures.

SOURCE: U.S. Department of Education, Institute of Education Sciences, National Center for Education Statistics, National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP), 2007 Trial Urban District Reading Assessment.

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