#PISA2015: Exciting Results for Norway

December 6, 2016


PISA2015 shows that Norwegian schools are evolving positively” says SLATE Vice Director, Astrid Tolo, following the announcement of the results of the PISA today.



The Programme for International Student Assessment (PISA) is an international survey to assess the quality, equity and efficiency of school systems. It is designed and undertaken by the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD). OECD’s PISA testing began in 2000 and has been undertaken every 3rd year since.  It is administered to 15 year-olds and consists of a 2-hour test assessing science, reading, math and collaborative problem-solving skills as well as providing information about other aspects of schools and learning. This year around 540 000 students from over 70 countries participated. There were nearly 5000 Norwegian students involved from nearly 200 schools. (Read more about PISA 2015)


Tolo explains that PISA results are important for all levels of stakeholders in Norwegian education. They have impacted policy, curriculum developments, teaching practice, parental expectations and not at least our thoughts about the Norwegian school system.  She adds that, whether we like or agree with PISA or not, the PISA experience provide one example of why it is so exciting to be involved in education research today, and why it is so important to conduct research on teaching and learning.



PISA and Learning Analytics

Barbara Wasson, the Director of SLATE, says that according to LAK 2011 / SOLAR, Learning Analytics (LA) is the measurement, collection, analysis and reporting of data about learners and their contexts, for purposes of understanding and optimizing learning and the environments in which it occurs. In this context the PISA results could be analysed together with other types of student data to gain insights into student learning. At a recent workshop held at Online Educa Berlin (OEB) sets PISA and Learning Analytics into context (read more).


“Learning Analytics” is something of a popular “buzz word” today. Research at SLATE aims to clarify not only what is meant by this approach, but to provide research results into how Learning Analytics, based on the analysis of many different kinds of data, can be used to advance and improve educational practice.


Norwegian results

The Norwegian PISA 2015 results were officially presented by Marit Kjærnsli from the Department of Teacher Education and School Research at the University of Oslo (UiO) at a press conference held at UiO for the Norwegian Ministry of Education and Research.



Kjærnsli highlighted the following points:

  • For the first time, Norwegian students performed better than the OECD average in all 3 subject areas

  • Family background and the school students attend has less of an effect on the test results in Norway than in most of the other countries

  • Disruptive behaviour is less common in Norwegian classrooms than had been measured previously


PISA Impacts on Education in Norway

At the press conference, Hege Nilssen, Director of The Norwegian Directorate for Education and Training (UDir), said that the PISA results and the relationship between classroom teaching and the test results provide the basis for development in schools. She highlighted in particular the improvement in the math results, which may well be the result of a strong focus on the teaching of mathematics and mathematics curricula these past years.



Read more from:

The Norwegian Directorate for Education and Training (UDir): PISA 2015: Stø kurs

The Norwegian Ministry of Education and Research:

Pressekonferanse om PISA

Resultater fra PISA 2015: Norske 15-åringer i toppsjiktet i lesing


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