American students still score poorly on an arts and music exam that is administered nationally. The exam was part of the National Assessment of Educational Progress, often called the Nation’s Report Card. It was last administered to teens in 2008.
According to the National Center for Education Statistics, American eighth graders scored an average 147 in music and 149 in visual arts on a scale of 300. 8,800 eighth graders from public and private schools across the USA took the test. No improvement was made since 2008.
“When I saw the results, clearly there is room for improvement, because clearly there is a lot of content that students weren’t able to interact with correctly,” said Acting Commissioner Peggy Carr.
Only half the students were able to identify that the solo instrument they heard in George Gershwin’s Rhapsody in Blue was a clarinet. Students also struggled with naming the contrasts in portrait styles.
“The average student does not know a lot of the content that was asked of them on this assessment,” said Carr. “It was a difficult assessment, a challenging assessment.”