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TIMSS 2019 Around the World: Headlines announcing the latest results in Math and Science
This week, IEN has collected headlines focusing on the results from the latest release of the Trends in International Mathematics and Science Study of 2019. The press release reported that “science and mathematics achievement is on the rise,” with progress in the percentage of students reaching minimum proficiency as 92% of fourth grade students and 87% of eighth grade students reached TIMSS 2019 Low International Benchmark. At the same time, there is a growing gender gap in 4th grade in math, as boys had higher average scores in almost half of all countries.
In an effort to make the release more useful, IEA (International Association for the Evaluation of Educational Achievement) and UNESCO also produced “Measuring global education goals: how TIMSS helps; monitoring progress towards Sustainable Development Goal 4 using TIMSS,” and, in an interview, the head of the global study declared “Rankings are the least informative part.”
As in IEN’s report on the TIMSS results in 2015 (Headlines Around the World TIMSS 2015 Edition), Asian countries like Taiwan, Japan, South Korea and Hong Kong continue to dominate the top of the rankings with Singapore students “best in the world.” Russian students followed just behind in math and ranked in the top five in science.
In the US, the release of results barely registered, with Forbes the only US publication who had an article appear in any of our searches. They reported “East Asia Aces Global Math, Science Tests As West Struggles To Keep Up.” The National Center for Education Studies summed up the US performance by pointing out that the US “had higher average scores than most participating countries” but “only 1 of the 45 other education systems (Turkey) had a larger score gap between the top-performing (90th percentile) and bottom-performing (10th percentile) students than the United States.” Checker Finn, former Assistant Secretary for Research and Improvement at the US Department of Education, lamented “U.S. students continue to fall short of too many international peers.”
TIMSS results in headlines:
Australian students rise in maths, science, Canberra Times
Bosnia and Herzegovina
Minister welcomes improved maths, science scores, Cyprus Mail
Maths: The fall of the Frenchhouse, Café Pedagogique
Philipines last in math, science among 58 countries, The Manila Times
Singapore students best in world for maths, science, New Straits Times
United Arab Emirates
— Thomas Hatch