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State Scores Rise on National Science Assessment

Maryland Students Score At or Above US Averages on NAEP Science

BALTIMORE – Maryland student scores improved at both the fourth and eighth grade level on the National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP) science exams for 2016.

Data released today also found State students outpacing the national averages at the eighth grade level, and on par with national averages at the fourth grade level.

“Maryland continues to put a focus on STEM education, and these results indicate our efforts are gaining real traction,” said Dr. Karen Salmon, State Superintendent of Schools. “With stronger, nationally developed science standards being implemented throughout our State, I look for this positive trend to continue.”

NAEP, also known as the Nation’s Report Card, added science to its battery of voluntary tests several years ago. The 2015 test was the third administration of the eighth grade test that a sample of Maryland students have been involved in, and the second time a sample Maryland fourth graders have been assessed. NAEP also offers a 12th grade science test, but Maryland schools have not participated in that assessment.

NAEP is a congressionally authorized project sponsored by the U.S. Department of Education through the National Center for Education Statistics.

The grade level results are as follows:

• Grade 4 Science – Maryland scores improved from 150 in 2009 to 153 in 2015. The national average also is 153. Asian students had an average score of 175; African-American students, 133; Hispanic students, 145; and White students, 167. Male students averaged 154, compared to 151 for female students, a difference not considered statistically significant.

• Grade 8 Science – Maryland scores improved from 149 in 2009 and 152 in 2011 to 155 in 2015, above the national average of 153. Asian students had an average score of 179; African-American students, 135; Hispanic students, 145; and White students, 168. Male and female students both averaged 155.