In a league of their own: the best performers in global education

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China is consistently ranked very highly in the PISA results (Programme for International Student Assessment) and in 2012 its education system not only out-performed all the other 64 participating countries, but increased its score.

So what makes Chinese students so successful? And does studying for high marks in maths and sciences mean less time is spent on other subjects?

Those are the questions we look at in this edition of Learning World, presented by Maha Barada.

PISA is an international OECD study which, every three years, evaluates education systems worldwide by testing thousands of 15-year-olds worldwide in reading, maths and science in terms of the knowledge and skills needed in adult life. We look at the latest results.

In the first of our three stories we follow student Junjai over the course of a gruelling day. Intent on getting to the best schools and becoming a doctor there is little time for typical teenage activities for this young man.

We head west for our second story, examining what makes Estonia such a success story in the PISA rankings.

And finally we hear about the pros and cons of PISA as a system of evaluation in a debate between two education experts.

We also want to have your views. So what do you think? Are PISA results important? Have you ever taken part in a PISA test? If you have, we would love to hear from you. So why not share your ideas on education with us on our social media pages?

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See also: Shanghai surprise: are China’s OECD education ranking scores all they seem?

China Development Brief

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