Strong Performers and Successful Reformers in Education – Lessons from PISA

What does the “top” look like internationally? How have the countries at the top managed to achieve sustained high performance or to significantly improve their performance? The OECD Programme for International Student Assessment (PISA) provides the world’s most extensive and rigorous set of international surveys assessing the knowledge and skills of secondary school students. This volume combines an analysis of PISA with a description of the policies and practices of those education systems that are close to the top or advancing rapidly, in order to offer insights for policy from their reform trajectories.

  • Chapter 1 Introduction
  • Chapter 2 Viewing Education in the United States Through the Prism of PISA
  • Chapter 3 Ontario, Canada: Reform to Support High Achievement in a Diverse Context
  • Chapter 4 Shanghai and Hong Kong: Two Distinct Examples of Education Reform in China
  • Chapter 5 Finland: Slow and Steady Reform for Consistently High Results
  • Chapter 6 Japan: A story of Sustained Excellence
  • Chapter 7 Singapore: Rapid Improvement Followed by Strong Performance
  • Chapter 8 Brazil: Encouraging Lessons from a Large Federal System
  • Chapter 9 Germany: Once Weak International Standing Prompts Strong Nationwide Reforms for Rapid Improvement
  • Chapter 10 Vignettes on education reforms: England, Poland and Sweden
  • Chapter 11 Lessons for the United States


About Giorgio Bertini

Research Professor. Founder Director at Learning Change Project - Research on society, culture, art, neuroscience, cognition, critical thinking, intelligence, creativity, autopoiesis, self-organization, rhizomes, complexity, systems, networks, leadership, sustainability, thinkers, futures ++
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