- In 2003, fourth-graders in the United States scored 536, on average, on the TIMSS science assessment, which was higher than the international average of 489 (table 8 and table C1 in appendix C). Of the 24 other participating countries, fourth-graders in 16 countries demonstrated lower science scores, on average, than fourth-graders in the United States, while students in three countries—Chinese Taipei, Japan, and Singapore—outperformed their peers in the United States.
- In comparison to the other 10 OECD-member countries in science, U.S. fourth-grade students outperformed their peers in seven countries in 2003 (Australia, Belgium-Flemish, Italy, the Netherlands, New Zealand, Norway, and Scotland; table 8). Japanese fourth-grade students were the only group of students to outperform U.S. fourth-grade students among the participating OECD-member countries
- In science, U.S. eighth-graders exceeded the international average and outperformed their peers in 32 of the 44 other participating countries (table 9 and table C2 in appendix C). U.S. eighth-graders performed lower, on average, than their peers in seven countries and were not found to perform measurably different from students in five countries.
- An examination of the performance of students from the other 12 OECD-member countries shows that U.S. eighth-grade students outperformed their peers in science in five of the countries (Belgium-Flemish, Italy, Norway, Scotland, and the Slovak Republic) and were outperformed by their peers in three of the countries (Hungary, Japan, and Korea; table 9).