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India's Bailing on the Most Influential International Standardized Test

After an embarrassing second-to-last finish on the 2009 PISA, India says its kids aren't prepared this year.


The second most populous nation in the world is giving a thumbs down to the standardized test used to measure and compare the academic performance of students from around the globe. India is backing out of this year's administration of the Program for International Student Assessment, a test run by the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development that's given to 15-year-olds every three years.

You've probably heard about the PISA. The U.S. first started taking the test in 2000, and much has been made over our students not scoring the highest. We've never scored in the top spot on any international standardized test, but our average performance has become a sign that public education is failing. India, which first participated in the 2009 test, scored second to last out of 73 nations in reading, math, and science, only beating Kyrgyzstan.

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Demystifying International Tests: What Makes the PISA Special?

Hint: It's not about comparing students across nations.

If you've heard about how American students are scoring lower than their international peers on standardized tests, you've probably heard about the PISA. (No, it's not an exam about a famous Italian tower that leans.) The Program for International Student Assessment is a test that's given every three years to measure and compare the achievement of 15-year-olds across the globe.

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Do We Teach Math the Wrong Way?

A new report shows just how far behind American students lag when compared to other countries in math education.


A new report published in the journal Education Next finds that the U.S. is decidedly lacking in number of "highly accomplished" math students. Other countries have a relative plethora of students performing better the 94th percentile of performance among Americans taking the Program for International Student Assessment (PISA)—the point where the study considers an American student "advanced." In 2006, 30 countries, including Taiwan, Finland, and even Estonia, outperformed American students on the PISA math test.

The Hechinger Report's HechingerEd blog suggests that the reason American students are falling behind in math has to do with the way we teach the subject. A comparison done in the spring looked at the relative methods for math instruction here and abroad.

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