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ERIC Number: EJ1062393
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2015
Pages: 24
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 29
ISSN: ISSN-0305-4985
Why Do East Asian Children Perform so well in PISA? An Investigation of Western-Born Children of East Asian Descent
Jerrim, John
Oxford Review of Education, v41 n3 p310-333 2015
A small group of high-performing East Asian economies dominate the top of the Programme for International Student Assessment (PISA) rankings. This has caught the attention of Western policymakers, who want to know why East Asian children obtain such high PISA scores, and what can be done to replicate their success. In this paper I investigate whether children of East Asian descent, who were born and raised in a Western country (Australia), also score highly on the PISA test. I then explore whether their superior performance (relative to children of Australian heritage) can be explained by reasons often given for East Asian students' extraordinary educational achievements. My results suggest that second-generation East Asian immigrants outperform their native Australian peers by approximately 100 test points. Moreover, the magnitude of this achievement gap has increased substantially over the last ten years. Yet there is no 'silver bullet' that can explain why East Asian children obtain such high levels of academic achievement. Rather a combination of factors, each making their own independent contribution, seem to be at play. Consequently, I warn Western policymakers that it may only be possible to catch the leading East Asian economies in the PISA rankings with widespread cultural change.
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Asia; Australia
Identifiers - Assessments and Surveys: Program for International Student Assessment