American education just got a report card. The National Assessment of Educational Progress tests students across the country to determine their proficiency in various subjects, including US history. For the history portion, students from across the country in the fourth, eight and twelfth grades were given a multiple choice test designed to measure their knowledge of history “in the context of democracy, culture, technological and economic changes, and America’s changing world role.” To read about the results, and what it means for Social Studies education in America, see this article from U.S. News and World Report.
History was always my favorite (not to mention my best) subject in school, so I looked up some of the questions just to see how I measured up to America’s students. Below is a selection of actual questions from the NAEP’s eighth grade level test. Take a look; could you get a passing grade?'