Context :

  • Human Resources Development Ministry signed an agreement with Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) for India’s Participation in Programme for International Student Assessment- PISA 2021.
  • The student assessment by PISA will ensure learning outcome through education. Students will be selected by PISA through random sampling.
  • Learnings from participation in PISA will help introduce competency based examination reforms in the school system. The CBSE and NCERT will be part of the process and activities leading to the actual test.


  • The Programme for International Student Assessment (PISA) is a triennial international survey which aims to evaluate education systems worldwide by testing the skills and knowledge of 15-year-old students.
  • PISA coordinated by the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) is a two-hour long test.
  • PISA measures the 15-year-old students reading, mathematics, and science literacy. PISA measures the student’s ability to use their ability to tackle the real-life challenge.
  • PISA is criticised for the fact that it is obsessed with standardised testing relying heavily on quantitative measures.

India and PISA

  • India had participated in PISA 2009. The performance of Indian students was abysmally poor and India was ranked 72nd rank among 74 participating countries. Then government of India boycotted PISA, blaming “out of context” questions for India’s dismal performance.

India signs agreement with OECD for participation in PISA 2021. What are the steps india can take to improve its ranking in PISA and how the data from PISA will help in bettering Indian education system.

Who conducts the PISA test?

  • a. UNESCO
  • b. NCERT
  • c. OECD
  • d. EU
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