In 2003 (in the U.S.), the National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP) administered assessments in reading and mathematics for grades 4 and 8. Representative samples of students were made from about 100 public schools in each state. A research report called “Comparison Between NAEP and State Mathematics Assessment Results: 2003” now focus on the question whether these results are comparable to the results published by individual state testing programs. The entire report is available online (only!), and can be downloaded in PDF format (Vol I and II).
The introduction contains some interesting historical remarks about achievement testing in the U.S., and this might be interesting to non-Americans (like myself).