Tag Archives: Austria


Governor of Austrian province suggests including PISA results in students’ general grades
Der Standard (17 April 2012)

In order to increase student motivation for PISA tests, Josef Pühringer, the Governor of the Province of Upper Austria, suggests including PISA test results in students’ general grades. He believes this would lead to higher test scores because the problem with Austria’s PISA results, in his view, is one of student motivation rather than weak student knowledge and competences.  (Find more about Austria’s performance on PISA in relation to other nations here and here.)


Majority against the idea that schools should start later (in German)
Der Standard (5 April 2012)

The usual starting time for schools in Austria is 8 a.m.  Education expert Andreas Salcher, also a former Austrian politician, argues that children cannot concentrate at such an early time and demands a later start. However, a recent poll among Austrian citizens reveals that 69 percent are against postponing the start of the school day to 9 a.m. and the president of the school inspectors points to the fact that working parents will face severe problems if school starts later. The Minister of Education indicates that the idea can be discussed among school partners, but for the time being is not being addressed in the Ministry.


Fuss over a standardized school leaving exam (in German)
Die Presse (10 March 2012)

Austria will introduce a reform to standardize the important Grade 12 school leaving exam (known as the Matura) which allows students to enroll in universities. The reform increases the minimum passing grade to answering 60 percent of the test correctly.  The minimum passing score had been 50 percent.  Because of the higher minimum passing grade, many students have failed the exam pre-test.  Teachers are also protesting the law, insisting that it reduces their freedom in examining their students.  The Ministry of Education, however, argues that the reform will ensure quality, objectivity, fairness and comparability to the Matura.