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PISA (Programme for International Student Assessment)

Launched by the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) in 1997, PISA represents a commitment by governments to monitor the outcomes of education systems through measuring 15-year-old student achievement on a regular basis and within an internationally agreed common framework. It aims to provide a new basis for policy dialogue and for collaboration in defining and implementing educational goals, in innovative ways that reflect judgements about the skills that are relevant to adult life. The PISA assessment takes a broad approach to measuring knowledge, skills and attitudes that reflect current changes in curricula, moving beyond the school-based approach towards the use of knowledge in everyday tasks and challenges. PISA covers the domains of reading, mathematics and science not merely in terms of whether students can reproduce specific subject matter knowledge, but also whether they can extrapolate from what they have learned and apply their knowledge in novel situations. Emphasis is on the mastery of processes, the understanding of concepts and the ability to function in various situations within each domain. (Source: OECD 2009).

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