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New Zealand’s results in the latest international Survey of Adult Skills


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Last updated 20 July 2016 by NZTecAdmin

The Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) has published the international results on http://www.oecd.org/skills/skills-matter-9789264258051-en.htm

New Zealand’s PIAAC results are encouraging: New Zealand adults score on average above the OECD average and are ranked:

  • 4th highest in Literacy
  • 13th highest in Numeracy
  • 5th highest in and Problem Solving in Technology-Rich Environments - while having the highest proportion of adults with moderate to high problem-solving skills.  

New Zealand adults’ average skills in Literacy and Problem Solving in Technology-Rich Environments are similar to those of Australia, and higher than those in England/Northern Ireland and the United States.

In Numeracy New Zealand adults’ average skills are higher than those of Australia, Canada, England/Northern Ireland and the United States. 

Literacy skills have increased for the total population since 1996 and increased at a faster rate for Māori and Pasifika since 2006. 

Meanwhile, Numeracy skills have remained static for the total population since 2006 and increased for Māori and Pasifika since 2006. In response, Tertiary Education, Skills and Employment Minister Steven Joyce said “The progress we have made is a real tribute to the adult educators and all those involved in improving literacy in New Zealand.” 

You can read Minister Joyce’s full press release, ‘New Zealand fourth in OECD for adult literacy’ here.

The Ministry of Education and the Ministry of Business Innovation and Employment have published three reports to coincide with the release:

  1. Skills and Education: Survey of Adult Skills
  2. Skills at Work: Survey of Adult Skills
  3. Skills in New Zealand and Around the World: Survey of Adult Skills 

 These reports are available free to download from: http://www.educationcounts.govt.nz/publications/series/survey_of_adult_skills 

The National Centre’s Symposium will feature:

1. Guest Speaker: William Thorn, Senior Analyst in OECD’s Education Directorate, presenting the PIAAC Plenary, ‘New Zealand in the International Survey of Adult Skills (PIAAC)’

2. Workshop session ‘Using PIAAC to inform your work’ – a practical, hands-on workshop on using New Zealand PIAAC data to inform your work  And finally… the National Centre is working with the Ministry of Education and Skills Highway to develop a PIAAC Resource telling New Zealand’s ‘PIAAC story’ and raising questions for discussion in a clear and accessible way.

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