But in April this story dropped. Folks had begun a mild-tomedium freakout because the East Asian PISA math superpowers (South Korea, Taiwan, Hong Kong, Singapore, etc), the people whose program everyone else was trying to imitate, had seen their scores start to drop.
But now Andreas Schleicher, the official in charge of Pisa, has said that this fall may not be due to a drop in the performance of these Asian powerhouses. He said he was looking into whether the decline could be explained by the fact that Pisa used computers for the main tests for the first time in 2015.
PISA (Programme for International Student Assessment) is an international testing program where 15 year old students are tested in mathematics, reading, and science. The reliability of the scores is pretty important to researchers, and if it is shown that computer based testing affects the reliability, that would be pretty bad.
In Ohio, several superintendents complained to lawmakers about the exact same thing. Schools that took their tests on the computer had lower scores than when the same schools used paper and pencil.
And it’s not only Ohio.