The Progress in International Reading Literacy Study (PIRLS) is an international comparative study of student achievement directed by the International Association for the Evaluation of Educational Achievement (IEA). PIRLS 2016 represents the fourth such study since PIRLS was first conducted in 2001. Australia has participated in the two most recent cycles – PIRLS 2011 and 2016. In Australia, PIRLS is managed by the Australian Council for Educational Research (ACER) and is jointly funded by the Australian Government and the state and territory governments. The goal of PIRLS is to provide the best policy-relevant information about how to improve teaching and learning and to help young students become accomplished and self-sufficient readers, by assisting countries monitor and evaluate their teaching of reading across time. Students in the fourth year of schooling typically have gained most of their reading skills in a multitude of environments – at school and at home; in different classrooms with different teachers. In order to reflect this situation, PIRLS collects a rich array of background data from students, schools and teachers, and also collects data about the education systems themselves. This report analyses and interprets the Australian data collected as part of PIRLS 2016. Where appropriate, this report makes comparisons with the results of other countries and with the international average to better understand Australian achievement in reading literacy and its context.
Australian Council for Educational Research Ltd. 2017