Analyzing PIAAC

October 8, 2013, the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) released its initial findings from the Programme for the International Assessment of Adult Competencies (PIAAC) – the most comprehensive and ambitious survey of adult (16-65) skills ever undertaken amongst OECD countries. The survey provides Canada - and the other 24 countries surveyed - a unique opportunity to not only measure skill levels, but examine how skills are used at work and the relationships between skills and socioeconomic outcomes. The survey results also allow for an examination how well education and training systems are succeeding in generating the skills measured in the survey and how public policy might improve their effectiveness.

PIAAC Resources

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Essential Skills Ontario Initiatives
Further Reading
All OECD PIAAC Publications
Overall, Canadian adults (16-65) performed about average on the literacy assessment relative to other OECD countries.
While a large portion of the Canadian population performed extremely well in the literacy domain, there is also a large portion of the population at the other end of the spectrum, with 17% scoring at level one or below.
The Canadian population finished slightly below the OECD average in numeracy in terms of average score, scoring 265 as compared to OECD's 269.
There is a 180 score point gap separating the highest and lowest performing respondents in numeracy, which is significantly higher than the OECD's average of 168.
The results from the PS-TRE domain show that Canadians perform well on PS-TRE relative to other OECD countries, with 36% of the population scoring at the highest proficiency levels (2 & 3), compared to the OECD average of 34%.
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