Education at a Glance

Centre for Educational Research and Innovation

1999-1487 (online)
1563-051X (print)
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OECD's annual Education at a Glance looks at who participates in education, what is spent on it, how education systems operate and the results achieved. The latter includes indicators on a wide range of outcomes, from comparisons of students’ performance in key subject areas to the impact of education on earnings and on adults’ chances of employment. This book includes StatLinks, urls linking to Excel® spreadsheets containing the background data.

Also available in French, German, Spanish
Education at a Glance 2015

Education at a Glance 2015

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24 Nov 2015
9789264242098 (PDF) ;9789264242081(print)

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Education at a Glance: OECD Indicators is the authoritative source for accurate information on the state of education around the world. It provides data on the output of educational institutions; the impact of learning across countries; the financial and human resources invested in education; access, participation and progression in education; and the learning environment and organisation of schools.

The 2015 edition introduces more detailed analysis of participation in early childhood and tertiary levels of education. The report also examines first generation tertiary-educated adults’ educational and social mobility, labour market outcomes for recent graduates, and participation in employer-sponsored formal and/or non-formal education. Readiness to use information and communication technology for problem solving in teaching and learning is also examined. The publication provides indicators on the impact of skills on employment and earnings, gender differences in education and employment, and teacher and school leader appraisal systems. For the first time, this edition includes highlights of each indicator inside the book. The report covers all 34 OECD countries and a number of partner countries (Argentina, Brazil, China, Colombia, India, Indonesia, Latvia, Russian Federation, Saudi Arabia and South Africa, and for the first time, Costa Rica and Lithuania).

The Excel™ spreadsheets used to create the tables and charts in Education at a Glance are available via the StatLinks provided throughout the publication.

Also available in French, German, Spanish
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  • Foreword

    Governments are increasingly looking to international comparisons of education opportunities and outcomes as they develop policies to enhance individuals’ social and economic prospects, provide incentives for greater efficiency in schooling, and help to mobilise resources to meet rising demands. The OECD Directorate for Education and Skills contributes to these efforts by developing and analysing the quantitative, internationally comparable indicators that it publishes annually in Education at a Glance. Together with OECD country policy reviews, these indicators can be used to assist governments in building more effective and equitable education systems.

  • Editorial - Education, learning and the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development

    The world of education has changed enormously over the past two decades. Around the globe, more children than ever can go to school and have the opportunity to acquire the skills needed for the workplace, for their community and for life. Since 1992, the first year that Education at a Glance was published, this publication has rigorously documented such transformation as the world moves closer to achieving the goal of providing education for all.

  • Introduction: The Indicators and their Framework

    Education at a Glance 2015: OECD Indicators offers a rich, comparable and up-to-date array of indicators that reflects a consensus among professionals on how to measure the current state of education internationally. The indicators provide information on the human and financial resources invested in education, how education and learning systems operate and evolve, and the returns to investments in education. The indicators are organised thematically, and each is accompanied by information on the policy context and an interpretation of the data. The education indicators are presented within an organising framework that

  • Reader's Guide
  • About the New ISCED 2011 Classification

    The structure of education systems varies widely between countries. In order to produce internationally comparable education statistics and indicators, it is necessary to have a framework to collect and report data on education programmes with a similar level of educational content. UNESCO’s International Standard Classification of Education (ISCED) is the reference classification for organising education programmes and related qualifications by education levels and fields. The basic concepts and definitions of ISCED are intended to be internationally valid and comprehensive of the full range of education systems.

  • Executive Summary

    On average, over 80% of tertiary-educated adults are employed, compared with over 70% of people with upper secondary or post-secondary non-tertiary education, and less than 60% of adults without upper secondary education. Tertiary-educated adults also earn about 60% more, on average, than adults with upper secondary as their highest level of educational attainment. In general, employment rates and earnings increase as an adult’s level of education and skills increases; but the labour market still regards a diploma or degree as the primary indication of a worker’s skills.

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  • Expand / Collapse Hide / Show all Abstracts Access to Education, Participation and Progression

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    • Indicator C1 Who Participates in Education?

      Indicator C1 presents information on the participation in education, including enrolment rates by age group, the percentage of students by age, ISCED level, type of institution (public, total private, government dependent private, and independent private), programme intensity (full time or part time), gender, and the expected years in education from age 5 through 39.

    • Indicator C2 How do Early Childhood Education Systems Differ Around the World?

      Indicator C2 shows enrolment rates in early childhood education and primary education. It also examines expenditure on early childhood education and characteristics such as pupil-teacher ratios and the percentage of students enrolled in public institutions.

    • Indicator C3 How Many Students are Expected to Enter Tertiary Education?

      Indicator C3 shows entry rates into tertiary education, including bachelor’s, master’s, doctoral and short-cycle programmes. The indicator also provides entry rates for entrants younger than the typical age and excluding international students. It also shows the profiles of entrants into tertiary education by age, gender and field of study.

    • Indicator C4 Who Studies Abroad and Where?

      Indicator C4 examines the share of international and foreign students enrolled in tertiary education by looking at their field of education, type of programme (ISCED level), country and region of origin, and country of destination. The underlying factors in students’ choice of a country of study (e.g. language of instruction and tuition fees) are also discussed.

    • Indicator C5 Transition from School to Work: Where are the 15-29 Year-Olds?

      Indicator C5 measures the proportion of young men and women who are in education and employment or neither in employment nor in education or training (NEET). Data for young adults in employment are also broken down by number of hours worked.

    • Indicator C6 How Many Adults Participate in Education and Learning?

      Indicator C6 measures the proportion of adults (25-64 year-olds) in employer-sponsored formal and/or non-formal education, broken down by skill proficiencies, gender and age, educational attainment, occupation, and use of skills in the workplace.

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  • Expand / Collapse Hide / Show all Abstracts The Learning Environment and Organisation of Schools

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    • Indicator D1 How Much Time do Students Spend in the Classroom?

      Indicator D1 shows the amount of instruction time students are expected to receive in compulsory general education: minimum intended instruction time, as well as the allocation of instruction time to the different curriculum areas.

    • Indicator D2 What is the Student-Teacher Ratio and How Big are Classes?

      Indicator D2 shows the average class size in primary and lower secondary education, the ratio of students to teachers, and examines the relationship between class size and student learning.

    • Indicator D3 How Much are Teachers Paid?

      Indicator D3 shows teachers’ statutory salaries at different points in their careers, teachers' actual salaries, and salaries of teachers relative to the salaries of similarly educated workers. It also includes information on the formation of base salaries and the various additional payments and incentive schemes used to reward teachers.

    • Indicator D4 How Much Time do Teachers Spend Teaching?

      Indicator D4 shows the statutory working time and statutory teaching time of teachers at different levels of education. It also includes the tasks and responsibilities of lower secondary teachers.

    • Indicator D5 Who are the Teachers?

      Indicator D5 measures the age distribution of teachers in primary, lower and upper secondary education and the gender distribution of teachers at all levels of education. It also examines the skills and readiness of teachers to use information and communication technologies (ICT) for problem solving.

    • Indicator D6 What Evaluation and Assessment Mechanisms are in Place?


      Indicator D6 presents the various mechanisms (national examinations and assessments, school inspections, school self-evaluations and school compliance reporting) that countries may use for the evaluation and assessment of their education system.

    • Indicator D7 What Teacher and School Leader Appraisal Systems are in Place?

      Indicator D7 describes the prevalence and nature of different types of teacher and school leader appraisal, the governance, responsibilities and procedures, as well as the use and influence of appraisal results on a range of decisions.

    • Indicator D8 To What Extent is Information and Communication Technology Used in Teaching and Learning?

      Indicator D8 examines information and communication technology (ICT) resources in schools. It reviews the age at which students first use the Internet and intensity of access. It shows the reading scores of students in the PISA paper test and computer-delivered reading test. Teachers’ ICT practices and professional development needs are also examined.

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