Am Statistical Software
Logo of the American Institutes for Research - small fluted single collumnFree statistical software from the American Institutes for Research

The National Assessment of Adult Literacy (NAAL) uses a sophisticated sampling and test design that allows a scientific representation of the literacy of the adult population (ages 16 and older) in the United States and good coverage of the domains of prose, document, and quantitative literacy. To keep participant burden to a minimum, NAAL administers only a fraction of the assessment items on each scale to each participant—too few items to produce accurate scale scores for each adult. To account for this, marginal maximum likelihood (MML) models are used to estimate proficiencies for the population and for groups within the population based upon responses to questions that were answered. The AM Software is provided free to users to implement models.

On December 15, 2005, NCES released a data set containing a limited subset of background variables. A complete data set containing all background variables will be made available at a later date.

The NAAL Data User's Guide provided here is designed to help first-time AM users get started analyzing the NAAL. The software also has an interactive help system that explains both how to use the software and the statistical procedures themselves. Users can access the help system by pressing the F1 within the program.

Because we continue to add innovative analytic procedures to AM, it is still in Beta Release. You also may notice that the AM on-line Help System and general User's Manual are Draft Versions, as they undergo frequent updates to reflect new procedures and respond to and address user needs and questions.

Download the AM Statistical software

Register to download and install the AM software package.

Guide for using NAAL data

Download (PDF) a tutorial on how to use NAAL data with the AM software package.


Technical support for using AM to analyze the NAAL is available by emailing


License Agreement for AM Statistical Software.