Exploring the characteristics of education systems which are successful in science
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Dr Newman Burdett, Bethan Burge et al

This report focuses on secondary analysis of the Trends in International Mathematics and Science Study (TIMSS) 2011 data, and explores the features of seven education systems that outperformed Northern Ireland in the TIMSS assessment of nine and ten year olds (Czech Republic, England, Finland, Hungary, the Netherlands, Sweden and the Slovak Republic).

It looks specifically at the profile of the science curriculum, teaching, pupils’ views and the assessment of science within these education systems. The findings for the more successful education systems were compared with science education in Northern Ireland, highlighting important differences that could be used to inform policy for primary science education in Northern Ireland.

The report suggests that main area of difference between science teaching in Northern Ireland and its comparator countries is that the other countries tend to teach science as a separate subject in primary education.

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Dr Newman Burdett, Bethan Burge et al

Published by:
National Foundation for Educational Research (NFER)

Date of publication:
July 2015

Country of origin:

Sponsored by:
Department of Education, Northern Ireland

CPD opportunities:

Offering a comparison between different education systems and the way they teach and assess science education, this report will make for interesting reading for policy makers and professionals with responsibility for science teaching.  

Analysis of the Trends in International Mathematics and Science Study (TIMSS) 2011 data.


Record ID:
R262 / 366
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