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Evaluation of the Voluntary National Tests, Year 2: Final Report APPENDIX B Achievement-Level Descriptions For 4th-Grade Reading and 8th-Grade Mathematics
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Evaluation of the Voluntary National Tests, Year 2: Final Report NAEP 4th-GRADE READING ACHIEVEMENT LEVEL DESCRIPTIONS Level General Literary Texts Informational Texts Basic • Demonstrate an understanding of the overall meaning of what they read • Make relatively obvious connections between the text and their own experience • Tell what the story is generally about • Provide details to support their understanding • Connect aspects of the story to their own experience • Tell what the text is generally about or identify the purpose for reading it • Provide details to support their understanding • Connect ideas from the text to their own background knowledge and experiences Proficient • Demonstrate an overall understanding of the text, providing inferential as well as literal information • Extend their ideas by making inferences, drawing conclusions, and making connections to their own experience • The connection between the text and what the student infers should be clear • Summarize the story • Draw conclusions about characters or plot • Recognize relationships such as cause and effect • Summarize information and identify authors intent or purpose • Draw reasonable conclusions from the text • Recognize relationships such as cause and effect or similarities and differences • Identify the meaning of the selection's key concepts Advanced • Generalize about topics in the reading selection • Demonstrate an awareness of how authors compose and use literary devices • Judge texts critically • Give answers that indicate careful thought • Make generalizations about the point of the story and extend its meaning by integrating personal experiences and other readings with the ideas suggested by the text • Identify literary devices such as figurative language • Explain the author's intent by using supporting material from the text • Make critical judgments of the form and content of the text • Explain their judgments clearly
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Evaluation of the Voluntary National Tests, Year 2: Final Report NAEP 8th-GRADE MATHEMATICS ACHIEVEMENT LEVEL DESCRIPTIONS Level General Specifics Basic • Conceptual and procedural understanding of the five NAEP content strands • Understanding of arithmetic operations—including estimation—on whole numbers, decimals, fractions, and percents • Complete problems correctly with the help of structural prompts such as diagrams, charts and graphs • Solve problems in all NAEP content strands through the appropriate selection and use of strategies and technological tools-including calculators, computers, and geometric shapes • Use fundamental algebraic and geometric concepts in problem solving • As they approach the proficient level, students should be able to determine which of the available data are necessary and sufficient for correct solutions and use them in problem solving. • However, these 8th graders show limited skill in communicating mathematically Proficient • Apply mathematical concepts and procedures consistently to complex problems in the five NAEP content strands • Conjecture, defend their ideas, and give supporting examples • Understand the connections between fractions, percents, decimals, and other mathematical topics such as algebra and functions • Have a thorough understanding of basic-level arithmetic operations-an understanding sufficient for problem solving in practical situations • Quantity and spatial relationships in problem solving and reasoning should be familiar • Convey underlying reasoning skills beyond the level of arithmetic • Compare and contrast mathematical ideas and generate their own examples. • Make inferences from data and graphs • Apply properties of informal geometry • Accurately use the tools of technology • Understand the process of gathering and organizing data • Be able to calculate, evaluate, and communicate results within the domain of statistics and probability Advanced • Reach beyond the recognition, identification, and application of mathematical rules in order to generalize and synthesize concepts and principals in the five NAEP content strands • Probe examples and counterexamples in order to shape generalizations from which they can generate models • Use number sense and geometric awareness to consider the reasonableness of an answer • Use abstract thinking to create unique problem-solving techniques and explain the reasoning processes underlying their conclusions SOURCE: Hoffman and Thacker (1999:14-15).