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Digest of Education Statistics: 2008
Digest of Education Statistics: 2008

NCES 2009-020
March 2009


Table 413. Average eighth-grade science scores in content areas and average time spent studying out of school, by country: 2003
Country or other jurisdiction Average score by content area Index of time students spend doing science homework (TSH) in a normal school week1 
Science overall Life science Chemistry Physics Earth science Environmentalscience High TSH Medium TSH Low TSH
Percent Mean score Percent Mean score Percent Mean score
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13
International average 473   (0.5) 474   (0.5) 474   (0.5) 474   (0.5) 474   (0.5) 474   (0.5) 13   (0.2) 458   (1.3) 44   (0.2) 466   (0.9) 43   (0.3) 467   (0.9)
Armenia 461   (3.5) 453 2  (3.3) 466 2  (4.2) 479   (3.2)  460 2  (3.7) 417 2  (4.4)   (†)   (†)   (†)   (†)   (†)   (†)
Australia 527   (3.8) 532 3  (3.8) 506 3  (3.8) 521 3  (3.7)  531 3  (4.2) 536 3  (3.4) 9   (0.8) 520   (6.4) 35   (1.6) 530   (3.3) 56   (2.0) 530   (4.4)
Bahrain 438   (1.8) 445 2  (1.9) 441 2  (2.6) 443 2  (2.0)  440 2  (2.4) 439 2  (3.1) 13   (0.7) 426   (4.1) 56   (1.3) 441   (2.5) 31   (1.4) 445   (2.6)
Belgium (Flemish) 516   (2.5) 526 3  (2.4) 503 3  (2.0) 514 3  (2.5)  508 3  (2.5) 523 3  (2.7)   (†)   (†)   (†)   (†)   (†)   (†)
Botswana 365   (2.8)  370 2  (2.7)  348 2  (3.1) 371 2  (3.2)  361 2  (3.1) 381 2  (3.3) 14   (0.7) 378   (6.1) 45   (1.0) 368   (3.2) 40   (1.2) 366   (3.6)
                                                                         
Bulgaria 479   (5.2) 474   (5.2) 482   (5.7) 485 3  (5.0)  491 3  (4.9) 464 3  (5.0)   (†)   (†)   (†)   (†)   (†)   (†)
Chile 413   (2.9) 427 2  (2.7)  405 2  (3.3) 401 2  (3.1)  435 2  (3.1) 436 2  (2.9)   (†)   (†)   (†)   (†)   (†)   (†)
Chinese Taipei 571   (3.5) 563 3  (3.1) 584 3  (4.0) 569 3  (3.3)  548 3  (3.1) 560 3  (3.1)  12 4  (1.2) 588 4  (4.6) 37 4  (1.3)  581 4  (4.0)  51 4  (2.1)  561 4  (3.5)
Cyprus 441   (2.0) 437 2  (2.2) 443 2  (2.6) 450 2  (1.7)  447 2  (2.1) 441 2  (2.3)   (†)   (†)   (†)   (†)   (†)   (†)
Egypt 421   (3.9) 425 2  (3.7) 442 2  (3.8) 414 2  (4.1)  403 2  (4.4) 430 2  (4.0) 23   (0.7) 416   (4.4) 64   (0.8) 436   (4.0) 13   (0.6) 430   (6.6)
                                                                         
England5    (†)   (†)   (†)   (†)   (†)   (†)   (†)   (†)   (†)   (†)   (†)   (†)
Estonia 552   (2.5) 547 3  (2.4) 552 3  (2.1) 544 3  (2.4)  558 3  (2.9) 540 3  (2.2)   (†)   (†)   (†)   (†)   (†)   (†)
Ghana 255   (5.9) 256 2  (5.6) 276 2  (6.6) 239 2  (5.4)  254 2  (5.6) 267 2  (6.2) 25   (1.2) 267   (8.5) 54   (1.0) 262   (6.0) 22   (1.0) 258   (8.1)
Hong Kong, SAR6,7  556   (3.0) 551 3  (2.9) 542 3  (2.6) 555 3  (2.8)  549 3  (2.9) 555 3  (2.6) 6   (0.5) 548   (4.6) 43   (1.4) 563   (2.9) 50   (1.4) 554   (3.9)
Hungary 543   (2.8) 536 3  (2.7) 560 3  (3.1) 536 3  (2.7)  537 3  (3.1) 528 3  (2.9)   (†)   (†)   (†)   (†)   (†)   (†)
                                                                         
Indonesia8  420   (4.1) 424 2  (3.9) 391 2  (3.8) 430 2  (4.0)  431 2  (3.8) 454 2  (3.4)   (†)   (†)   (†)   (†)   (†)   (†)
Iran, Islamic Republic of 453   (2.3) 447 2  (2.6) 445 2  (2.7) 445 2  (3.0) 468 2  (2.9) 487 3  (2.1) 8   (0.7) 451   (5.6) 42   (1.4) 457   (2.9) 49   (1.7) 452   (2.7)
Israel9  488   (3.1)  491 3  (3.0)  499 3  (3.4) 484 3  (2.9) 485 3  (3.0) 486 3  (2.9) 13   (0.9) 480   (4.7) 43   (1.6) 485   (4.3) 44   (2.0) 505   (3.4)
Italy 491   (3.1)  498 3  (3.2)  487 3  (3.3) 470   (3.2)   513 3  (3.2) 497 3  (3.0) 14   (1.0) 489   (5.9) 41   (1.1) 487   (3.7) 45   (1.4) 496   (3.7)
Japan 552   (1.7)  549 3  (2.0) 552 3  (2.1) 564 3  (1.9) 530 3  (2.1) 537 3  (2.0)   (†)   (†)   (†)   (†)   (†)   (†)
                                                                         
Jordan 475   (3.8) 475   (4.0) 478   (4.4) 465 2  (3.8) 472   (4.0) 492 3  (3.2) 19   (0.9) 466   (4.2) 52   (1.2) 478   (3.9) 29   (1.5) 499   (5.0)
Korea, Republic of10  558   (1.6) 558 3  (1.6) 529 3  (2.5) 579 3  (1.6) 540 3  (1.9) 544 3  (1.4) 4   (0.4) 549   (6.3) 26   (1.7) 562   (2.4) 70   (2.0) 559   (1.9)
Latvia 513   (2.9) 511 3  (2.5) 514 3  (3.2) 512 3  (2.4) 514 3  (2.8) 508 3  (3.3)   (†)   (†)   (†)   (†)   (†)   (†)
Lebanon 393   (4.3) 360 2  (5.0)  433 2  (4.9) 419 2  (4.0) 395 2  (4.0) 374 2  (5.1)   (†)   (†)   (†)   (†)   (†)   (†)
Lithuania8  519   (2.1) 517   (2.4)  534 3  (2.3) 519 3  (2.7) 512 3  (2.7) 507 3  (2.0)   (†)   (†)   (†)   (†)   (†)   (†)
                                                                         
Macedonia9  449   (3.6) 448 2  (3.8) 467 2  (3.9) 458 2  (3.1) 440 2  (4.3)  442 2  (3.7)   (†)   (†)   (†)   (†)   (†)   (†)
Malaysia 510   (3.7) 504 3  (3.7)  514 3  (3.8) 519 3  (3.6) 502 3  (3.8) 513 3  (3.2) 20   (1.0) 513   (4.4) 49   (0.9) 510   (3.6) 31   (1.3) 510   (4.6)
Moldova, Republic of 472   (3.4) 466 2  (3.7) 479   (3.9) 479   (3.7) 475   (4.0) 454 2  (3.8)   (†)   (†)   (†)   (†)   (†)   (†)
Morocco8,11  396   (2.5) 390 2  (2.6)  402 2  (2.7) 410 2  (2.7) 397 2  (3.4) 396 2  (3.3) 14 7  (0.7) 391 7  (5.3) 47 7  (1.1)  396 7  (3.4)  39 7  (1.3) 408 7  (3.5)
Netherlands7  536   (3.1) 536 3  (3.3)  514 3  (2.6) 538 3  (3.4) 534 3  (3.2) 539 3  (2.8)   (†)   (†)   (†)   (†)   (†)   (†)
                                                                         
New Zealand 520   (5.0) 523 3  (5.1) 501 3  (5.6) 515 3  (4.7) 525 3  (4.8) 525 3  (3.9) 10   (1.3) 519   (6.2) 41   (1.6) 531   (6.9) 48   (2.0) 518   (5.1)
Norway 494   (2.2)  496 3  (2.5) 485 3  (3.0)  488 3  (2.6) 517 3  (2.7) 496 3  (2.2) 13   (0.8) 485   (3.7) 44   (1.2) 493   (3.1) 43   (1.7) 503   (2.3)
Palestinian National Authority 435   (3.2)  435 2  (3.6) 444 2  (3.9) 432 2  (3.6) 439 2  (3.0) 444 2  (3.7) 21   (1.1) 433   (4.4) 56   (1.3) 442   (3.4) 23   (1.3) 441   (4.8)
Philippines12  377   (5.8) 387 2  (5.8) 342 2  (6.1) 380 2  (4.7)  377 2  (5.7) 403 2  (5.4) 17   (0.7) 381   (7.5) 50   (0.8) 379   (5.7) 33   (1.2) 381   (7.2)
Romania 470   (4.9) 471   (4.8) 474   (4.9) 473   (4.1) 469   (5.2) 472   (4.7)   (†)   (†)   (†)   (†)   (†)   (†)
                                                                         
Russian Federation 514   (3.7) 514 3  (3.3) 527 3  (4.0) 511 3  (3.4) 518 3  (3.3)  491 3  (3.2)   (†)   (†)   (†)   (†)   (†)   (†)
Saudi Arabia 398   (4.0)  412 2  (3.9) 382 2  (4.8) 394 2  (3.9) 394 2  (4.0) 410 2  (3.8) 8   (0.7) 382   (6.0) 61   (1.5) 402   (4.6) 31   (1.7) 403   (4.6)
Scotland7  512   (3.4)  512 3  (3.3)  499 3  (3.2) 515 3  (3.0) 515 3  (3.8) 511 3  (3.5) 3   (0.4) 487   (14.2) 27   (1.4) 508   (5.0) 71   (1.5) 517   (3.4)
Serbia8  468   (2.5)  468 2  (2.6) 474   (3.2) 471   (2.6) 471   (3.0) 457 2  (2.4)   (†)   (†)   (†)   (†)   (†)   (†)
Singapore 578   (4.3)  569 3  (4.0)  582 3  (4.2) 579 3  (3.4) 549 3  (3.9) 568 3  (3.8) 18   (0.7) 595   (4.1) 48   (0.7) 585   (4.4) 34   (0.9) 564   (5.5)
                                                                         
Slovak Republic 517   (3.2) 514 3  (2.9) 519 3  (3.6)  519 3  (2.9) 523 3  (3.3)  509 3  (2.8)   (†)   (†)   (†)   (†)   (†)   (†)
Slovenia 520   (1.8) 521 3  (2.2) 532 3  (2.6) 509 3  (1.8) 523 3  (2.2)  515 3  (2.2)   (†)   (†)   (†)   (†)   (†)   (†)
South Africa 244   (6.7) 250 2  (6.0) 285 2  (5.9)  244 2  (6.2)  247 2  (6.3)  261 2  (6.6) 17   (0.7) 234   (9.6) 52   (0.9) 246   (7.9) 32   (0.9) 263   (7.4)
Sweden 524   (2.7) 528 3  (2.7) 526 3  (2.6) 525 3  (2.9)  532 3  (3.3)  499 3  (2.6)   (†)   (†)   (†)   (†)   (†)   (†)
Tunisia 404   (2.1)   417 2  (2.0) 413 2  (2.5) 386 2  (2.5)  408 2  (2.0)  436 2  (2.2) 9   (0.6) 398   (4.0) 35   (0.9) 400   (2.8) 56   (1.2) 411   (2.6)
United States11  527   (3.1) 537 3  (3.0) 513 3  (3.2)  515 3  (2.9)  532 3  (2.9)  533 3  (2.9) 13   (0.7) 519   (4.3) 43   (1.4) 530   (3.4) 45   (1.7) 531   (3.7)
— Not available.
† Not applicable.
‡ Reporting standards not met.
1 Index based on students' reports on the frequency and amount of science homework they are given. High level indicates more than 30 minutes of science homework assigned 3–4 times a week. Low level indicates no more than 30 minutes of sci­ence homework no more than twice a week. Medium level includes all other possible combinations of responses.
2 Country average significantly lower than international average.
3 Country average significantly higher than international average.
4 Students were asked about natural science; data pertain to grade 8 physics/chemistry course.
5 Did not satisfy guidelines for sample participation rates.
6 SAR = Special Administrative Region.
7 Met guidelines for sample participation rates only after replacement schools were included.
8 National Desired Population does not cover all of International Desired Population.
9 National Defined Population covers less than 90 percent of National Desired Population.
10 Korea tested the same cohort of students as other countries, but later in 2003, at the beginning of the next school year.
11 Nearly satisfied guidelines for sample participation rates only after replacement schools were included.
12 Students study only biology at grade 8.
NOTE: Data are for eighth grade or equivalent in most countries. Possible scores range from 0 to 1,000. Detail may not sum to totals because of rounding. Standard errors appear in parentheses.
SOURCE: International Association for the Evaluation of Educational Achievement (IEA), Trends in International Mathematics and Science Study (TIMSS), 2003, TIMSS 2003 International Science Report, by Michael O. Martin et al. (This table was pre­pared October 2005.)