International Assessments of Science Learning: Their Positive and Negative Contributions to Science Education

  • Peter J. Fensham


The establishment and continuity of two international comparative assessments of science learning—the IEA’s TIMSS project and the OECD’s PISA project—have meant that there are now high-status reference points for other national and more local approaches to assessing the efficacy of science teaching and learning. Both projects, albeit with very different senses of what the outcome of science learning should be, have contributed positively and negatively to the current state of assessment of school science. The TIMSS project looks back at the science that is commonly included in the curricula of the participating countries. It is thus not about established school science nor about innovations in it. PISA is highly innovative looking, prospectively forward to see how students can use their science learning in everyday life situations. In this chapter some of these positives and negatives are discussed.


Science Education Science Learning Scientific Competence Intended Curriculum School Science Education 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2013

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Monash University & Queensland, University of TechnologyClaytonAustralia

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