Use this URL to cite or link to this record in EThOS: http://ethos.bl.uk/OrderDetails.do?uin=uk.bl.ethos.508763
Title: An investigation of reasons for Finland's success in PISA
Author: Chung, Jennifer
ISNI:       0000 0000 8075 2691
Awarding Body: University of Oxford
Current Institution: University of Oxford
Date of Award: 2009
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Abstract:
The Programme for International Student Assessment, or PISA, administered by the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development, surveyed fifteen-year-olds for the first time in 2000. PISA focuses on mathematics, science, and reading literacy, and intends to undertake a new study every three years. The administration in 2003 added a section that measured problem-solving skills. The results from all three surveys thus far have placed Finland as the highest achieving country in PISA. Finland’s top performances in PISA astonished the educational world. More so than previous cross-national surveys such as TIMSS and PIRLS, PISA has drawn worldwide educational interest towards Finland and its educational system. PISA, unlike TIMSS, does not measure mastery of curriculum, but rather outcomes of education. PISA focuses on real-life applications of knowledge. Triggering global curiosity, the PISA has placed Finland on the itinerary of those wishing to discover the influences behind educational success. This research focuses upon Finland’s historical, cultural, and social context as a part of the Nordic countries and also its immense success in PISA. This project uncovers some of the factors contributing to Finland’s success in education, as indicated by the results in PISA. Finland’s history as a part of both Sweden and Russia has intertwined education with the movement for independence. The struggles after independence, including war and recession, have also reinforced the importance of education within Finnish society. The important status of teachers in Finland, in addition to their high quality, has further enhanced the excellence of the Finnish education system. PISA findings, however, have indicated that the Swedish-speaking Finns score lower than the Finnish-speaking Finns, a phenomenon explored within the research. This project investigates the reasons behind this counterintuitive result. The project incorporates perspectives through interviews with teachers and head teachers from the six sample schools, both Swedish-speaking and Finnish-speaking, Finnish education ministers, PISA creators from the OECD, and Finnish educational researchers and professors responsible for executing PISA in Finland. Their insight, from many different points of view, illuminated different perspectives on PISA and education in Finland.
Supervisor: Phillips, David Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID: uk.bl.ethos.508763  DOI: Not available
Keywords: Comparative and international education ; Finland ; Scandinavia ; Nordic ; education ; comparative education
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