skip to main content skip to footer

Who Reads Best? Factors Related to Reading Achievement in Grades 3, 7 and 11. The Nation's Report Card ESE NAEP

Applebee, Arthur N.
Publication Year:
Report Number:
NAEP Report
Document Type:
Page Count:
Subject/Key Words:
Elementary and Secondary Education (ESE), Family Environment, Grade 3, Grade 7, Grade 11, High Risk Students, Reading Achievement, Reading Habits, Reading Instruction, Student Attitudes, Teaching Methods, National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP)


Describing the characteristics and attitudes of a nationally representative sample of 36,000 students in grades 3, 7, and 11, this report details the specific features of reading instruction, how students approach their reading tasks, student reading experiences, and the home and school supports to academic achievement. The report is based the National Assessment of Educational Progress's (NAEP) 1986 assessment of the reading achievement of American schoolchildren. It does not discuss trends over time as many NAEP reports do. Major findings of the report are: (1) students at all three grade levels had particular difficulty with tasks that require them to elaborate upon or defend their evaluations and interpretations of what they read; (2) poor readers reported doing less independent reading than good readers; (3) students reported that their teachers used a variety of instructional approaches to reading instruction; (4) poor readers reported that their teachers used a narrower range of approaches than were used with better readers; (5) poor readers reported using a narrower range of strategies than good readers; (6) students from historically at-risk populations continued to perform poorly relative to the national population at each grade level; and (7) reading proficiency was related to students' general literacy experiences. A procedural appendix is attached.

Read More