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Sample Assessment Questions

The items below are examples of questions 15-year-olds were asked to answer for PISA. When you click an item in one of the four subject categories, you will see the item image and links to the item questions. Click on these links and a new window will open with a question, its answer, and the percent of students in the United States and other OECD countries who answered correctly.

Reading Literacy Sample Items
Mathematics Literacy Sample Items
Internet Relay Chat
Science Literacy Sample Items
Problem Solving Sample Items


Question 1 and Answer
Transportation diagram of Zedland's 3 railway lines.


The above diagram shows part of the transportation system of a city in Zedland, with three railway lines. It shows where you are at now, and where you have to go.

The fare is based on the number of stations travelled (not counting the station where you start your journey). Each station travelled costs 1 zed.

The time taken to travel between two adjacent stations is about 2 minutes.

The time taken to change from one railway line to another at a junction is about 5 minutes.

PISA's definition of literacy

For more sample questions from the PISA assessments view this OECD publication:
Take the Test: Sample Questions from OECD's PISA Assessments

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National Center for Education Statistics -
U.S. Department of Education