Wednesday, 25 Jan 2006

MEDIA RELEASE For immediate release: Wednesday 25 January 2006 Australian students among the highest users of computers at school and in the home: OECD report A new analysis of 2003 results in the OECD Programme for International Student Assessment (PISA) has found that Australian students are among the world’s leading users of computers in education both at school and in the home. The study, Are students ready for a technology-rich world? was released by the OECD overnight. It is a previously unpublished analysis of data collected during the 2003 round of PISA testing, which assessed the achievement of students in mathematical, reading and scientific literacy. Students also completed a questionnaire on background, learning habits, learning environment, engagement and motivation and computer use. Access to computers in Australia was found to among the highest in the OECD with 94 per cent of Australian students reporting that they have access to a computer at home for school work compared to the OECD average of 79 per cent while 100 per cent of Australian students reported having access to a computer at school. Australian students were the highest users of computers for word processing with 70 per cent of Australians reporting that they use a computer frequently for this purpose compared to an OECD average of 48 per cent. In contrast just 10 per cent of Australian students reported frequent use of educational software such as a mathematics program, just below the OECD average of 13 per cent. Australian students were also among the most frequent users of the Internet. Seventy-four per cent report frequent use of the Internet to look up information about people, things or ideas. The OECD average was 55 per cent. Ninety per cent of Australian students reported being confident users of the Internet. The Australian Council for Educational Research (ACER) led the international consortium that conducted the PISA 2003 assessments and collected the data used in this new analysis. The full report is available from the OECD online at www.pisa.oecd.org. Additional information on PISA and the Australian national reports from PISA 2003 are available from the ACER website at http://www.acer.edu.au/research/projects/pisa/ ****************ENDS*************