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2005 NAEP Reading Sample Questions at Grade 12

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The sample questions below give a brief introduction to the materials that were used to assess the reading ability of twelfth-grade students. All questions are based on the NAEP reading framework, which defines the test design and content. The framework was developed through an extensive national consensus process and adopted by the National Assessment Governing Board. Visit the Governing Board's website to download the full text of the reading framework. In addition to the overall percentage of students who answered the question correctly, the percentage of students at each achievement level who answered correctly is presented. To learn more about achievement levels, read specific descriptions of the Basic, Proficient, and Advanced achievement levels in reading.

Several other tools are available to help students, parents, and teachers look more closely at NAEP questions. View the item maps that provide concrete examples of what students at various achievement levels likely know and can do. Visit the NAEP Questions Tool to search over 1,800 released items in all NAEP subject areas.

Sample Question: According to the guide, at which of the following time of day would the reduced Metrorail fare be in effect? A. 5:30 a.m. B. 6:00 a.m. C. 3:00 p.m. D. 7:30 p.m.

As part of the 2005 reading assessment, twelfth-graders were presented with a guide to a city's transit system. The multiple-choice question presented here required students to make a simple inference based on explicit information in the Metro Guide.

National percentage correct in 2005: Overall: 77; Below Basic: 48; At Basic: 81; At Proficient: 93; At Advanced: 98. Percentage of correct twelfth-grade student response in 2005, by region: Northeast: 75; Midwest: 84; South: 78; West: 71.

Sample Question: Choose one of the locations listed in the guide where Metro passes can be purchased. Describe one convenience and one inconvenience of buying passes at that location. Handwritten response: Metro passes can be purchased online with smartlink. It is a convenient way to purchase passes in the comfort of your own home. You don't have to leave your house or wait in line. However, you do have to have a credit card and charge the passes.

The following is a short constructed-response question which asked students to interpret document information in relation to a real life situation. Responses to this task were rated according to a three-level scoring guide: "Evidence of full comprehension," "Evidence of partial or surface comprehension," or "Evidence of little or no comprehension." This sample student response was rated as "Evidence of full comprehension."


National percentage rated as


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