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Table B.1.51. Percentage of 15-year-old students in PISA on reading literacy scale, by selected proficiency level ranges and country: 2009
Country Below level 2   Level 4 and above   Level 5 and above
Percent   s.e.   Percent   s.e.   Percent     s.e.
OECD average 19   0.2   28   0.2   8   * 0.1
OECD countries                        
Australia 14 * 0.6   37 * 1.0   13   * 0.8
Austria 28 * 1.3   22 * 1.1   5   * 0.5
Belgium 18   0.9   36 * 0.9   11     0.6
Canada 10 * 0.5   40 * 0.8   13   * 0.5
Chile 31 * 1.5   11 * 0.9   1   * 0.3
Czech Republic 23 * 1.3   23 * 1.1   5   * 0.5
Denmark 15   0.9   26 * 1.2   5   * 0.5
Estonia 13 * 1.0   27   1.1   6   * 0.6
Finland 8 * 0.5   45 * 1.2   15   * 0.8
France 20   1.2   32   1.4   10     1.0
Germany 19   1.1   31   1.1   8   * 0.6
Greece 21   1.8   24 * 1.1   6   * 0.5
Hungary 18   1.4   28   1.5   6   * 0.7
Iceland 17   0.6   30   0.8   9     0.6
Ireland 17   1.1   29   1.2   7   * 0.5
Israel 27 * 1.2   26 * 1.1   7   * 0.6
Italy 21 * 0.6   26 * 0.6   6   * 0.3
Japan 14 * 1.1   40 * 1.3   13   * 0.9
Korea, Republic of 6 * 0.8   46 * 2.0   13   * 1.1
Luxembourg 26 * 0.6   23 * 0.5   6   * 0.5
Mexico 40 * 1.0   6 * 0.4   #   *
Netherlands 14   1.5   33   2.3   10     1.1
New Zealand 14 * 0.8   41 * 1.0   16   * 0.8
Norway 15   0.8   31   1.2   8     0.9
Poland 15   0.8   30   1.3   7   * 0.6
Portugal 18   1.2   24 * 1.2   5   * 0.5
Slovak Republic 22 * 1.2   21 * 0.9   5   * 0.5
Slovenia 21 * 0.6   24 * 0.7   5   * 0.5
Spain 20   0.9   21 * 0.7   3   * 0.3
Sweden 17   0.9   29   1.2   9     0.7
Switzerland 17   0.9   31   1.1   8     0.7
Turkey 25 * 1.4   14 * 1.4   2   * 0.4
United Kingdom 18   0.8   28   1.0   8     0.5
United States 18   1.1   30   1.5   10     0.9
                           
Non-OECD countries                        
Albania 57 * 1.9   3 * 0.5      
Argentina 52 * 1.9   7 * 1.0   1     0.2
Azerbaijan 73 * 1.6   1 !* 0.2   #    
Brazil 50 * 1.3   7 * 0.7   1   * 0.2
Bulgaria 41 * 2.6   14 * 1.5   3   * 0.5
Chinese Taipei 16   0.9   26 * 1.3   5   * 0.9
Colombia 47 * 1.9   5 * 0.6   1   * 0.2
Croatia 22 * 1.3   20 * 1.1   3   * 0.4
Dubai-UAE 31 * 0.5   20 * 0.6   5   * 0.5
Hong Kong-China 8 * 0.7   44 * 1.1   12   * 0.8
Indonesia 53 * 2.3   1 !* 0.3   #    
Jordan 48 * 1.6   4 * 0.5   #   *
Kazakhstan 59 * 1.5   4 * 0.5   #   *
Kyrgyz Republic 83 * 1.2   1 * 0.3      
Latvia 18   1.2   20 * 1.3   3   * 0.4
Liechtenstein 16   1.8   29   2.5   5 ! * 1.4
Lithuania 24 * 1.2   17 * 0.9   3   * 0.4
Macao-China 15 * 0.5   20 * 0.5   3   * 0.2
Montenegro, Republic of 50 * 1.0   6 * 0.4   1   * 0.2
Panama 65 * 2.6   4 * 0.7   1 ! * 0.2
Peru 65 * 1.7   3 * 0.6   1 ! * 0.2
Qatar 64 * 0.5   7 * 0.3   2   * 0.2
Romania 40 * 2.0   7 * 0.8   1   * 0.2
Russian Federation 27 * 1.3   14 * 0.9   3   * 0.5
Serbia, Republic of 33 * 1.3   9 * 0.6   1   * 0.2
Shanghai-China 4 * 0.5   54 * 1.3   20   * 1.1
Singapore 13 * 0.5   41 * 0.8   16   * 0.5
Thailand 43 * 1.5   4 * 0.6      
Trinidad and Tobago 45 * 0.7   11 * 0.5   2   * 0.3
Tunisia 50 * 1.6   3 * 0.6      
Uruguay 42 * 1.2   10 * 0.6   2   * 0.3
† Not applicable.
# Rounds to zero.
! Interpret data with caution.
‡ Reporting standards not met.
*p < .05. Significantly different from the U.S. average at the .05 level of statistical significance.
NOTE: To reach a particular proficiency level, a student must correctly answer a majority of items at that level. Students were classified into reading literacy levels according to their scores. Exact cut point scores are as follows: below level 2 (a score less than 407.47); level 4 and above (a score greater than .552.89); and level 5 and above (a score greater than 625.61). Scores are reported on a scale from 0 to 1,000. The Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) average is the average of the national percentages of the OECD member countries, with each country weighted equally. Because the Program for International Student Assessment (PISA) is principally an OECD study, the results for non-OECD countries are displayed separately from those of the OECD countries. Standard error is noted by s.e. In the country column, italics indicate non-national entities. UAE refers to United Arab Emirates.
SOURCE: Fleischman, H.L., Hopstock, P. J., Pelczar, M.P, and Shelly, B.E. (2010). Highlights From PISA 2009: Performance of U.S. 15-Year-Old Students in Reading, Mathematics, and Science Literacy in an International Context (NCES 2011-004), supplemental table R7a. U.S. Department of Education, National Center for Education Statistics. Washington, DC: U.S. Government Printing Office.
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National Center for Education Statistics - http://nces.ed.gov
U.S. Department of Education