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Sample Questions in Civics


Test Yourself...then see how students responded to the same questions on NAEP. The following grade 8 short constructed-response question requires the intellectual skill of "explaining and analyzing" in the content area, "What are the roles of citizens in American democracy?" Student responses were scored according to a 3-point scale as "Complete," "Partial," or "Unacceptable." The sample response below is an example of a "Complete" response.

Overall, 25 percent of eighth-graders' responses were rated "Complete." When just students in the Proficient level are considered, 48 percent of responses were scored as "Complete."

Grade 8 Short Constructed-Response. National percentage "complete" in 2006. 25% of all student responses were rated "complete." By achievement level 5% of students Below Basic were scored as "complete." 26% of students at Basic were scored as "complete." 48% of students at Proficient were scored "complete." Reporting standards at Advanced were not met. Sample size was insufficient to permit a reliable estimate. The following question refers to the photograph below of the 1963 March on Washington. The photograph depicts Martin Luther King, Coretta Scott King and group of marchers. What are two specific ways in which marches and demonstrations such as the one illustrated can achieve political goals? The student responsed to 1: "It could possibily make the other party see your point and vote for your cause." The student responded to 2: "It also shows you stand up for what you believe in and won't give up no matter. what." 

See more about this question in the NAEP Questions Tool.

View this question, at score 219, on a map of NAEP civics items.

Find out what the civics assessment measures.

SOURCE: U.S. Department of Education, Institute of Education Sciences, National Center for Education Statistics, National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP), 2006 Civics Assessment.

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