Chapter 8: State Indicators

Elementary and Secondary Education

Select Indicator:

Quartiles | Findings | Description

Eighth grade science proficiency: 2000


Eighth grade science proficiency: 2000


Eighth Grade Science Proficiency: 2000.

Quartiles


Eighth grade science proficiency: 2000*

 
1st Quartile
(44%–35%)
2nd Quartile
(34%–28%)
3rd Quartile
(27%–23%)
4th Quartile
(22%–14%)
No Data
 
Connecticut Illinois Alabama Arkansas Alaska
Idaho Indiana Arizona California Colorado
Maine Kentucky Georgia Hawaii Delaware
Massachusetts Missouri Maryland Louisiana District of Columbia
Michigan New York North Carolina Mississippi Florida
Minnesota Oregon Oklahoma Nevada Iowa
Montana Utah Rhode Island New Mexico Kansas
Nebraska Virginia Tennessee South Carolina New Hampshire
North Dakota
Wyoming Texas   New Jersey
Ohio
  West Virginia   Pennsylvania
Vermont       South Dakota
        Washington
        Wisconsin
 
*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 8-8.

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Findings

  • In 2000, the nationwide percentage of eighth grade public school students who performed at or above the proficient level in science was 30%, an increase from 27% in 1996 in testing without accommodations.

  • In 2000, the percentage of public school students who performed at the proficient level in science was slightly higher in the eighth grade (30%) than in the fourth grade (28%).

  • The proportion of eighth grade students who reached the proficient achievement level was 41% for whites, 7% for blacks, 12% for Hispanics, 37% for Asians/Pacific Islanders, and 14% for American Indians/Alaska Natives.

  • Sex differences in science proficiency were larger in the eighth grade (9%) than in the fourth grade ( 7%).

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Description

This indicator provides a measure of the extent to which a state’s eighth grade students in public schools have achieved proficiency in science. High values show that a high percentage of a state’s eighth grade students have demonstrated the ability to undertake the study of high school science, a prerequisite to the further study of science and engineering and a necessary life skill.

Proficiency in science is based on achievement level in the National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP) 2000 Science Assessment. Achievement levels represent performance standards set by the National Assessment Governing Board to provide a context for interpreting student performance on NAEP.

The basic level (143–169) denotes partial mastery of prerequisite knowledge and skills that are fundamental for proficient work at the eighth grade level. The proficient level (170–207) represents solid academic performance at the eighth grade level. Students who reach this level have demonstrated competency over challenging subject matter, including subject-matter knowledge, application of such knowledge to real-world situations, and analytical skills appropriate to the subject matter. The advanced level (208–300) signifies superior performance in science.

A National Academy of Sciences panel evaluated the process used to establish the achievement levels for the science assessment and urged that they be considered developmental and interpreted with caution.

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National Science Board.