PISA 2012 Results: What Makes Schools Successful? Resources, Policies and Practices (Volume IV)



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This report is the fourth in a series of volumes presenting the results of PISA's fifth survey (PISA 2012) which was carried out in 65 countries and economies. It examines how student performance is associated with various characteristics of individual schools and school systems.

PISA 2012 assessed the competencies of 15-year-olds in reading, mathematics and science (with a focus on mathematics). Around 510 000 students between the ages of 15 years 3 months and 16 years 2 months participated in the assessment, representing about 28 million 15-year-olds globally.



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Chapter 1

How Resources, Policies and Practices are Related to Education Outcomes


This chapter examines the relationships between education outcomes and various school and system characteristics, including the use of vertical and horizontal stratification, resource allocation, how the school system is organised and governed, and the learning environment in the school and classroom. Trends in these relationships up to 2012 are also discussed.

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Chapter 2

Selecting and Grouping Students


This chapter discusses the ways in which students are selected and grouped into certain education levels, grade levels, schools, programmes and different classes within schools based on their performance. The chapter offers an analysis of whether students in school systems with similar degrees of stratification share similar dispositions for learning mathematics, and examines how stratification practices and policies have changed since 2003.

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Chapter 3

Resources Invested in Education


This chapter examines the allocation of human, material and financial resources throughout school systems and the amount of time dedicated to instruction and learning. Resource allocation is also discussed as it relates to school location, the socio-economic profile of schools, programme orientation, education level, and whether a school is public or private. The chapter also analyses changes since 2003 in the level of resources devoted to education and how those resources are allocated.

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Chapter 4

Governance, Assessments and Accountability


This chapter explores the inter-relationships among school autonomy, school competition, public and private management of schools, school leadership, parental involvement, and assessment and accountability arrangements. The chapter also discusses trends since 2003 in school governance, assessments and accountability.

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 Chapter 5

How the Quality of the Learning Environment is Shaped


This chapter discusses student- and teacher-related aspects of the learning environment, including student truancy, teacher-student relations, the disciplinary climate and teacher morale. It also examines trends in school climate and student truancy since 2003.

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Chapter 6

Policy Implications of School Management and Practices


In the wake of the recent global economic crisis, countries need to structure and manage school systems efficiently to maximise limited resources. This chapter considers how policies related to the governance of school systems and to the learning environment in individual schools are associated with performance in PISA and equity at the national and school levels.



Annex A

PISA 2012 Technical Background

Annex A1: Indices from the student, school and parent context questionnaires

Annex A2: The PISA target population, the PISA samples and the definition of schools

Annex A3 Technical notes on analyses in this volume

Annex A4 Quality assurance

Annex A5: Technical details of trends analyses

Annex A6: Anchoring Vignettes in the PISA 2012 Student Questionnaire

Annex B

PISA 2012 Data

Annex B2: Results for regions within countries

Annex C

The Development and Implementation of PISA - A Collaborative Effort

> Back to PISA 2012 Results for Volumes I, II and III. 



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