Rojak Daily Logo
Back to top

Singapore Students Are the Best at Science, Math, and Reading

They read real good.

Singapore Students Are the Best at Science, Math, and Reading
An international education survey published a report stating that Singaporen teens are the best in the world in the area of Science, Math, and Reading. In all three subjects, Singapore students demonstrated knowledge and skills equivalent to almost two additional years of schooling compared to students in the US, France and Sweden. The findings are part of the 2015 Program International Student Assessment (PISA) for the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD), a group of the world's richest economies. 

There was no data for Malaysia. Funny, since Indonesia and Thailand were in the list. We must have been late for that class. 

The program tested 540,000, 15-year-old students in 72 countries and economies on the areas of science, reading, maths, and collaborative problem-solving. You can view the full results at PISA. While you're looking for our country on that map, here are a few other things the study found:

1. Gender differences in science tend to be smaller than in reading and mathematics but, on average, in 33 countries and economies, the share of top performers in science is larger among boys than among girls

2. Poorer students are three times more likely to be low performers than wealthier students, and immigrant students are more than twice as likely as non-immigrants to be low achievers. 

3. More than one in four students in Beijing-Shanghai-Jiangsu-Guangdong (China), Hong Kong (China), Singapore and Chinese Taipei are top-performing students in mathematics, a higher share than anywhere else. It's true what they say, no matter how good you are, there's always a Chinese person somewhere doing a better job than you. 

4. How much time students spend learning and how science is taught are even more strongly associated with science performance and the expectations of pursuing a science-related career than how well-equipped and staffed the science department is and science teachers’ qualifications.