How high is the academic ability of Japanese children in the world!? Two international tests to measure education level
Japan, Japan, is worried that the IT field and English ability are late compared to other countries. "Easy education," "decrease in academic ability," which became a hot topic a little while ago, and "educational inequality" these days are also worrisome problems. Japanese education, is this okay? How big is it in the world? I asked the Policy Division, Education Policy Bureau, Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science, and Technology!
There are international surveys to find out the academic level of each country. Two of the most well-known are PISA (Study Achievement Survey) conducted by OEDC (Economic Cooperation and Development Organization) and TIMSS (International Mathematics and Scientific Research Trends) conducted by the International Association for the Assessment of Educational Achievement (IEA). ..
PISA is conducted once every three years from 2000 in three fields of "scientific literacy," "reading ability," and "mathematical literacy", targeting the 15-year-old (first-year high school student in Japan) who has completed compulsory education I am.
TIMSS is targeted at elementary and junior high school students and is tested once every four years from 1995 to measure educational achievement in arithmetic and mathematics/science.
Educational content has been improved based on the results of PISA!
This time, let's look at the level of education in Japan based on the results of PISA.
Purpose of Pisa!
First of all, the purpose of PISA is not to look at each student's academic ability, but to see whether or not the education policy of the whole country is appropriate. The countries that participate in the survey should look at the results of PISA, clarify what is the problem with the current educational policy, and utilize it for improvement.
Even in Japan, the guidelines for learning that set the minimum standards to be taught in schools have been revised repeatedly while also referring to the concept of ability measured by PISA (key competency is also a reference.
Japan is in the top group!
By the way, what I care about is the Japanese level.
PISA held every three years. It was most recently held in 2018, but the results will come out at the end of this year (2019). Latest day at this time
However, in the first place, PISA is not a test for competition in each country. Still, as mentioned above, it is for clarifying the points of improvement in national educational policies. You need to look carefully not only at the rankings, but also what power is lacking.
In addition, according to the Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science, and Technology, it is amazing that the top group is maintained in a country with a population of 100 million people like Japan. Singapore has a population of 56.10 million, Hong Kong has 7.4 million, and China has only participation in metropolitan areas such as Beijing and Shanghai. In Japan, “educational disparity” is sometimes talked about. Still, in fact, Japan has such a wide range of education to a certain level that Japan has become a country like no other in the world.
The true value of the new course of study starting from 2020 will be questioned in 2021
Let's look at not only the ranking but also the transition of the score. Look at the graph below.
You can see that it has dropped sharply from 2000 to 2003 and 2006.
According to the Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology, the course of study was revised and the school education shifted to "easy education" in the rest of 2002, just after the 2003 PISA. The school has been closed for two days a week, and the number of lessons has been significantly reduced. The decline in the score at that time was also called the “2003 shock”, and it was criticized heavily that it might be a harmful effect on leisure education.
While the country is not wrong with the idea of fostering the "living power" that is the basis of leisure education, it aims to swing back from a relaxed education to a less relaxed one and increase the number of class hours in 2007—revised the course of study. After that, the PISA score also improved.
Then, what is worrisome is the new guideline starting from 2020. The next PISA will be held in 2021, so the true value of the new curriculum will be questioned.
The challenge is ICT literacy:
By the way, the recovered score is down again in 2015. According to a report from the Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology (MEXT), it may have been partly because testing began to be conducted on computers from this year.
In addition to the academic ability survey, PISA also conducts a questionnaire survey. Still, it is surprising that Japanese children are not accustomed to using PCs and use familiar software such as Word and Excel. I found that I was not good at it. Therefore, it is possible that the computer test did not give the appropriate answers.
In the current era when it is said that AI may take away work, it is quite worrisome that ICT literacy is low. The country feels a great sense of crisis and will seriously put effort into fostering ICT skills. The Minister of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology, Masahiko Shibayama, is also challenging the full utilization of cutting-edge technology in educational settings in the "Innovation Plan for Learning" announced in November last year.