In 2018, the average civics score for eighth-grade students was not statistically different compared to 2014, the previous assessment year; however, the 2018 average score was higher in comparison to the first civics assessment in 1998. The NAEP civics scale at grade 8 ranges from 0 to 300 (although student performance typically ranges from 110 to 190, representing the 10th and 90th percentiles, respectively). In 1998, the mean of the civics scale was set at 150 and the standard deviation at 35.
The chart below shows the trend in average civics scores beginning in 1998 and the cut scores indicating the lower end of the score range for each NAEP achievement level: NAEP Basic, NAEP Proficient, and NAEP Advanced. Read a description of each achievement level by clicking the question mark icons. Read more about NAEP achievement levels and how they are set. Please note, achievement levels are to be used on a trial basis and should be interpreted and used with caution.
Scroll down to see results by percentile.
NAEP reports scores at five selected percentiles to show the progress made by lower- (10th and 25th percentiles), middle- (50th percentile), and higher- (75th and 90th percentiles) performing students. In 2018, civics scores were not statistically significant at any of the selected percentile levels compared to 2014.
In comparison to 1998, however, civics scores were higher in 2018 for lower-performing students (those at the 10th and 25th percentiles).