Chapter 8: State Indicators

Elementary and Secondary Education

Select Indicator:

Quartiles | Findings | Description

Eighth grade mathematics performance: 2003

Eighth grade mathematics performance: 2003

Eighth Grade Mathematics Performance: 2003.


Eighth grade mathematics performance: 2003*

1st Quartile
2nd Quartile
3rd Quartile
4th Quartile
Colorado Alaska Arizona Alabama
Connecticut Idaho Delaware Arkansas
Iowa Indiana Florida California
Kansas Maine Illinois District of Columbia
Massachusetts Missouri Kentucky Georgia
Minnesota Nebraska Maryland Hawaii
Montana New Jersey Michigan Louisiana
New Hampshire New York Oklahoma Mississippi
North Dakota North Carolina Rhode Island Nevada
South Dakota Ohio South Carolina New Mexico
Vermont Oregon Texas Tennessee
Wisconsin Pennsylvania West Virginia  
Wyoming Utah    
*States in alphabetical order, not data order.

SOURCE: U.S. Department of Education, National Center for Education Statistics, National Assessment of Educational Progress. See table 8-5.

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  • Nationwide, eighth grade students in public schools showed increases in mathematics mastery as average scale scores for the accommodations-permitted sample rose from 269 in 1996 and 272 in 2000 to 276 in 2003.

  • Within the limits of statistical significance, 8 states exceeded the 2003 national average mathematics score, 7 had average scores, and 15 fell below the national average.

  • Gains in score between 2000 and 2003 occurred throughout the entire student sample at all levels of performance. They ranged from 3 scale points for students who performed at the 90th percentile to 7 scale points for students who performed at the 10th percentile.

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Mathematics achievement at the eighth grade level indicates how prepared students are to undertake high school mathematics studies and acquire key skills needed for careers in science and technology. The National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP), a federally authorized ongoing assessment of student performance in various subjects on a state and national scale, assessed eighth grade achievement in mathematics in 2003. All 50 states participated.

National and state results are based on only public school students. Beginning in 2002, NAEP obtained the national sample by aggregating state samples rather than by selecting an independent national sample. Since 1996, NAEP permitted students with disabilities or limited English proficiency to use certain accommodations (e.g., extended time, small-group testing). National-level data with and without accommodations were published beginning in 1996, but state-level data with accommodations were not published until 2000. In math, only accommodations-permitted data are available at the state level for 2003. These data are not comparable with data from students who were not permitted accommodations.

Student performance is described in terms of average scores on a scale from 0 to 500.

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National Science Board.