Evidence from NAEP 8th Grade Geography Data: Identifying and Filling the Achievement Gap Equitably for Race and Gender




Smith, Allison

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Existing National Assessment for Education Progress (NAEP) data, specifically for eighth-grade Black, Hispanic, Asian, and Female students at the NAEP Advanced, Proficient, and Basic levels, were analyzed using the NAEP question tool, data explorer and item maps. For each student group, geography achievement was identified at each NAEP performance level. In addition, a pre-test using released NAEP world geography questions, correlated with identified deficiencies, was given to all ninth-grade world geography students at Karl G. Maeser Preparatory Academy (KGMPA). Results were compared to national results. Supplemental curriculum was designed as an intervention strategy to address the identified deficiencies. Two world geography classes at KGMPA received these lessons. A post-test was then administered to all students. Direct comparisons of the pre and post-tests of identified student groups were made. Results showed that KGMPA and NAEP gender demographics were similar, but race/ethnicities were not. Four of the five most commonly missed questions were the same for both groups confirming the selection of knowledge and skill for the supplemental lessons. The intervention was successful for the general KGMPA test population. Disaggregated data was inconclusive regarding the advantage of supplemental lessons for the various groups because the sample size was small, and the results could not be determined to be statistically significant.



geography, achievement, equity


Smith, A. (2023). Evidence from NAEP 8th grade geography data: Identifying and filling the achievement gap equitably for race and gender. Masters of Applied Geography, Texas State University, San Marcos, Texas.


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