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Education at a Glance 2011

Highlights

image of Education at a Glance 2011

Education at a Glance 2011: Highlights summarises the OECD’s flagship compendium of education statistics, Education at a Glance. It provides easily accessible data on key topics in education today, including:

  • Education levels and student numbers: How far have adults studied, and what access do young people have to education?
  • Economic and social benefits of education: How does education affect people’s job prospects, and what is its impact on incomes?
  • Paying for education: What share of public spending goes on education, and what is the role of private spending? 
  • The school environment: How many hours do teachers work, and how does class size vary? 
  • PISA: A special section introduces findings from the 2009 round of the OECD Programme for International Student Assessment (PISA), which examined the knowledge and skills of 15-year-old students in more than 70 countries and economies.

Each indicator is presented on a two-page spread. The left-hand page explains the significance of the indicator, discusses the main findings, examines key trends and provides readers with a roadmap for finding out more in the OECD education databases and in other OECD education publications. The right-hand page contains clearly presented charts and tables, accompanied by dynamic hyperlinks (StatLinks) that direct readers to the corresponding data in Excel™ format.

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How well do OECD students perform in reading?

This spread examines the reading literacy of 15-year-old students and draws on data from the 2009 PISA tests, in which reading was the major focus. A key priority for all countries is to ensure that as many students as possible attain at least Level 2, which corresponds to the essential skills needed to participate effectively and productively in society. Students who fail to reach this level struggle to perform many everyday tasks, and are unlikely to become lifelong learners or do well in the labour market. For countries to gain a competitive advantage in the knowledge economy, efforts should be focused on educating their students to handle complex reading tasks at Levels 5 and 6.

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