Learning for Tomorrow's World

First Results from PISA 2003

image of Learning for Tomorrow's World
This report presents the first internationally comparable results to OECD's 2003 Programme for International Student Assessment (PISA) Survey of the educational performance of 15-year-olds in reading, mathematics, and science in 25 OECD countries.  This year, the concentration was on mathematics. Beyond the examination of the relative standing of countries in mathematics, science and reading, the report also looks at a wider range of educational outcomes that include students’ motivation to learn, their beliefs about themselves, and their learning strategies. Furthermore, it examines how performance varies between the genders and between socio-economic groups; and it provides insights into some of the factors that influence the development of knowledge and skills at home and at school, how these factors interact and what the implications are for policy development.  Most importantly, the report sheds light on countries that succeed in achieving high performance standards while, at the same time, providing an equitable distribution of learning opportunities.

The report presents a wealth of indicators showing how countries compare in various measures of educational performance and factors that affect that performance.

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The Learning Environment and the Organisation of Schooling

Centre for Educational Research and Innovation

Chapter 4 showed the considerable impact that socio-economic background can have on student performance and, by implication, on the distribution of educational opportunities. At the same time, many of the factors of socioeconomic disadvantage are not directly amenable to education policy, at least not in the short term. For example, the educational attainment of parents can only gradually improve, and average family wealth depends on the longterm economic development of a country as well as on the development of a culture which promotes individual savings. The importance of socio-economic disadvantage, and the realisation that aspects of such disadvantage only change over extended periods of time, give rise to a vital question for policy makers: what can schools and school policies do to raise performance and promote equity? Building on the results from PISA 2000, which suggested that students and schools perform better in a climate characterised by high expectations, the readiness of students to invest effort, the enjoyment of learning, a positive disciplinary climate and good teacher-student relations, this chapter examines policy levers and school-level characteristics that are often thought to be conducive to raising ...


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