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Study of 60 Countries Finds Increasing STEM Participation is a Global Initiative

Study of 60 Countries Finds Increasing STEM Participation to be a Global Initiative

A study conducted by IEA's TIMSS & PIRLS International Study Center at Boston College assessed the education systems of 60 countries and regions to compare global education trends, finding similarities when it comes to both increasing standards for teacher preparation and promoting involvement in STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Math) subjects.

Using a chapter defining each country’s education systems as well as questionnaires filled out by teachers, parents and students living within each respective country, the TIMSS & PIRLS International Study Center provide insight on how global education has evolved as a whole in a 20-year period.

For instance, says the report has found that “[m]ore than one-third of the participating countries reported strengthening the requirements to become a teacher of fourth or eighth grade students.”

Additionally, countries are increasingly adopting technology policies and are encouraging students to study STEM.

"Countries reported special initiatives that aim to increase student interest and participation in STEM subjects, including a 'Science Picnic' in Poland that attracted more than 100,000 visitors, and the establishing of the LUMA Centre Finland to inspire and motivate youth in STEM education through the latest science and technology activities,” said.

On that same note, the study found most countries to be heavily emphasizing and updating math and science standards. Further, many countries are starting to educate children about math concepts at younger and younger ages.

"Curricular guidelines that include mathematics and science are beginning to emerge in preprimary programs. Almost all TIMSS 2015 participants reported having official documents guiding the curriculum for preprimary education programs for children age 3 or older, such as kindergarten.”

According to, the study results will be released in their entirety on November 29.

Read more about the results here.

Nicole Gorman, Senior Education World Contributor


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