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The following are mathematics questions developed bythe Organization for Economic Cooperation andDevelopment in an attempt to monitor the outcomes ofeducation systems by measuring student achievement.The PISA exams are administered every three years to15 year olds in dozens of countries, including in theU.S.
Of the 42 questions in the sample test pulled from the 2000 and 2003 PISA exams, theU.S. scored above the OECD average on 12 questions, equal in one question andbelow average on 29.AEI adjunct scholar Jacob L. Vigdor of Duke University contends in a recent paper thatthe overall low scores in math among U.S. students may be attributed to the emphasison equality of curriculum, which forces students of a similar age to study at the samecourse level despite variations in aptitude. Vigdor suggests the emphasis onaccelerating poor- and moderate-performing students comes at the expense of high-performing students, whose overall achievements are declining. He concludes that“American students are heterogeneous, and a rational strategy to improve mathperformance must begin with that premise.”
Take the testThe following questions are among those in the 2000 and 2003exams. See how you stack up against the world’s 15 year olds. (answers are provided at the end)
Question 1: Best car Car Safety Fuel External Internal Features Efficiency Appearance Fittings (S) (F) (E) (T) CA 3 1 2 3 M2 2 2 2 2 Sp 3 1 3 2 N1 1 3 3 3 KK 3 2 3 2
Question 2: Skateboard Product Price in zeds Complete skateboard 82 or 84 Deck 40, 60 or 65 One set of four wheels 14 or 36 One set of trucks 16 One set of hardware (bearings, 10 or 20 rubber, pads, bolts and nuts)