Publications & Resources

Assessing the Validity of the National Assessment of Educational Progress: The NAEP Technical Review Panel White Paper

Jun 1996

Robert L. Linn, Daniel Koretz, and Eva L. Baker

During the past six years, under a contract from the National Center for Education Statistics, the CRESST Technical Review Panel has conducted a series of research studies addressing the uses and interpretations of the National Assessment of Education Progress (NAEP), oftentimes known as the nation’s report card. This report summarizes the most important findings including the quality of NAEP data, the number and character of NAEP scales, the robustness of NAEP trend lines, the trustworthiness of and interpretation of group comparisons, the validity of interpretations of NAEP anchor points and achievement levels, the effects of student motivation on performance, the adequacy of NAEP data on student background and instructional experiences, and what is understood from NAEP reports by educators and policy makers. In addition, general conclusions based on this body of research are presented and related to the major purposes of NAEP. A general conclusion is that the evolving and growing range of uses to which NAEP is put will create the need for ongoing validation work of the sort illustrated by the Panel’s studies.

Linn, R. L., Koretz, D., & Baker, E. L. (1996). Assessing the validity of the National Assessment of Educational Progress: the NAEP Technical Review Panel white paper (CSE Report 416). Los Angeles: University of California, Los Angeles, National Center for Research on Evaluation, Standards, and Student Testing (CRESST).