Follow AAE on:

Subscribe to RSS Feed:

Global Education Rankings Cast Shadow on U.S. Education System
posted by: Alana | December 08, 2016, 09:32 PM   


The Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) conducted an international survey of nearly half a million 15-year-old students from 72 countries and economies to determine which countries excel in various educational subjects, and which ones fall behind.


The results of this survey are known as PISA or the Program for International Student Assessment and this particular survey focused on learning about how students compare on a global scale in science.


Here's a rundown of discoveries based on this latest OECD survey.


  • Singapore was ranked highest overall.
  • Japan, Finland, and Canada were not far behind being named the top 3 OECD countries after Singapore.
  • The U.S. came in at a dismal 35th in math, 18th in science, and 15th in reading.
  • That puts the U.S. below average in math compared to other OECD countries.
  • Only 12 countries improved much since last survey.
  • 13% of world's top performing students come from just four provinces in China
  • Around 1 in 10 students in OECD countries (or 1 in 4 in Singapore) performed at the highest level in science.
  • Too many students lack basic knowledge - 1 in 5 students surveyed performed poorly not even reaching a level that everyone should achieve before leaving school.
  • The gender gap in science is much narrower than in other subjects like reading and math.
  • On average in 33 countries and economies, the share of top performers is larger among boys than girls.
  • Only in Finland are girls more likely to be top performers.
  • 1 in 4 students expect to persue a science related career regardless of gender, however girls tend to envision working in the health sector while boys envision working in science, engineering or becoming IT professionals.
  • Poorer students are 3X more likely to be low performers than wealthy students.
  • Immigrants more than twice as likely than non-immigrants to be low achievers.
  • In Vietnam, the 10% most disadvantaved student do as well as the average student in an OECD country.


To learn more about how U.S. students faired in this survey, read the performance page.



Do these facts surprise you? Why or why not?

Tell us your thoughts in the comments below!


Comments (0)Add Comment

Submit a comment
 (not published)
smaller | bigger

security code
Write the displayed characters