ERIC Number: EJ1012051
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2013
Conclusions from PISA and TIMSS Testing
Tienken, Christopher H.
Kappa Delta Pi Record, v49 n2 p56-58 2013
Secretary of Education Duncan (2010) lamented the state of U.S. education in 2010 after the release of the results from the 2009 Programme for International Student Assessment (PISA). He wrote: "Unfortunately, the 2009 PISA results show that American students are poorly prepared to compete in today's knowledge economy. President Obama has repeatedly warned that the nation that "out-educates us today will out-compete us tomorrow." The PISA results show that a host of developed nations are out-educating the United States. Finland, Korea, and Canada are consistent high-performers. The jewel of China's education system, Shanghai, debuted this year as the highest scoring participant globally. The Secretary issued similar remarks after the release of the results from the Trends in Mathematics and Science Study (TIMSS) in December 2012. At that time, he stated that, given the vital role that science, technology, engineering, and math play in stimulating innovation and economic growth, it is particularly troubling that eighth-grade science achievement is stagnant and that students in Singapore and Korea are far more likely to perform at advanced levels in science than U.S. students. A number of nations are out educating the U.S today in the STEM disciplines--and if the nation does not turn that around, those nations will soon be out-competing the U.S. in a knowledge-based, global economy. In this editorial, Christopher H. Tienken argues that the Secretary's comments insinuate that U.S. students ranked alarmingly behind a set of nations and international cities on the PISA and TIMSS tests in mathematics and science. The author, however, provides an alternative interpretation of the data and suggests that rankings on international tests are not what U.S. citizens should worry about if they are concerned about the quality of public education in the United States.
Descriptors: Achievement Rating, Comparative Education, Comparative Analysis, Comparative Testing, Data Interpretation, Performance Factors, Educational Assessment, Educational Indicators, Achievement Tests, Academic Achievement, Educational Trends, STEM Education, Foreign Countries
Routledge. Available from: Taylor & Francis, Ltd. 325 Chestnut Street Suite 800, Philadelphia, PA 19106. Tel: 800-354-1420; Fax: 215-625-2940; Web site: http://www.tandf.co.uk/journals
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Opinion Papers; Reports - Evaluative
Education Level: Elementary Secondary Education
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Assessments and Surveys: Program for International Student Assessment; Trends in International Mathematics and Science Study