TIMSS 2015 – analysis & why the results are important

The latest Trends in Maths and Science Survey (TIMSS) has been published. Comment from Toby Greany, Professor of Leadership and Innovation at the Institute of Education:

“The story of England’s performance in TIMSS over the last 20 years is one of improvement in maths, albeit from a low base, improvement in year 5 science and consistency in year 9 science, leaving us securely in the second highest-performing group of countries overall. The significant increases in the proportions of pupils reaching the Low benchmark in maths in years 5 and 9 in 2015 are particularly welcome.

Three performance issues that stand out for England from the 2015 results are: that pupils here make relatively little progress in maths between years 5 and 9; that far higher proportions achieve the Advanced and High benchmarks in both subjects in the highest-performing countries; and that we have wider gaps between our more and less advantaged pupils (according to the number of books pupils say there are at home) than most other high performing countries. Equally though, pupils in England appear to value, enjoy and feel confident in learning maths and science more than many of their international peers.

In a time of global uncertainty and complex social and economic challenges, education becomes more important than ever. Used properly, international studies such as TIMSS can support informed debate on education system reform and enable genuine opportunities for system learning.”

You can read more analysis from Professor Greany here.

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