PISA (Programme for International Student Assessment)

The OECD’s PISA (Programme for International Student Assessment) is the largest international study of education, examining the reading, mathematics and science achievements of students as they approach the end of compulsory schooling (at age 15 and 16). PISA also collects contextual information from students, school principals, and optionally, teachers and parents. It began in 2000 and is carried out every three years. Ireland has participated in every cycle of PISA since 2000 and, starting in 2006, the assessment has gradually transitioned to an online format, which provides a more interesting and interactive experience for participating students. PISA contributes to the monitoring of the Department’s National Literacy and Numeracy Strategy 2011-2020.

OECD’s informational video on PISA.

Ireland has an excellent record of participation in all cycles of PISA: schools, students, and since 2015, students’ parents have contributed towards high responses rates. We hope to continue to maintain a strong participation rate in future cycles of PISA.

The results of PISA 2018 are published in December 2019. The field trial for PISA 2021 was due to take place in March 2020 but was cut short due to the Cov-19 pandemic. The Main Study for this has also been postponed until 2022, with results expected at the end of 2023.

Below is a description of recent national activities and reporting on PISA.

PISA 2018 Autumn Study

The PISA 2018 Autumn Study took place in Ireland during October and November 2018. In total, 57 post-primary schools and just under 2,000 students across the country took part. PISA is normally conducted during the spring time (March/April); however, the Department of Education is concerned about the burden placed on schools at that time of the year. This study assesses the feasibility of carrying out PISA during the autumn instead of spring. A report on the study is expected in early 2020.

For more details please click here.

PISA 2018

The PISA 2018 Main Study took place in Ireland during March and April 2018. 157 post-primary schools and over 5,000 students across the country took part. Information was also collected from parents and teachers and we would like to thank all participants in the study. We would also like to thank the 40 post-primary schools and over 2,000 students (and their parents) that took part in the PISA 2018 Field Trial in spring 2017. The national and international results for PISA 2018 were released in December 2019.

PISA 2015

National report: Report on the mathematics, reading and science results from PISA 2015 (December 2016, updated November 2019).

The press release is available here.

For E-appendix (updated November 2019) click here.

For information statement on errata (November 2019) click here.

For list of errata (November 2019) click here.

PISA 2012

Selected publications from PISA 2012

National Report: Report and Brochure on the mathematics, reading and science results for Ireland from PISA 2012 ‎(December 2013). Supplementary tables are available in the PISA 2012 E-appendix.

PISA in Classrooms: Report on PISA in Classrooms: Implications for the Teaching and Learning of Mathematics in Ireland (October 2016).

Teachers’ Guide: Report on PISA 2012: Teachers’ Guide to Mathematics and Problem Solving (October 2016).