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Video Studies

The TIMSS 1999 Videotape Classroom Study

The Third International Mathematics and Science Study (TIMSS) 1999 Video Study examines classroom teaching practices through in-depth analysis of videotapes of eighth-grade lessons in mathematics and science. The TIMSS 1999 Video Study provides rich descriptions of mathematics and science teaching as it was actually experienced by eighth-grade students in seven countries. In addition to the United States, participating countries included Australia, the Czech Republic, Hong Kong SAR, Japan, the Netherlands, and Switzerland. Students in these countries were generally among the top-performing students on the TIMSS 1995 mathematics assessment and, in particular, outperformed their U.S. counterparts. By studying nationally-representative samples of eighth-grade mathematics and science lessons, the TIMSS 1999 Video Study provides educators and policymakers a better understanding of how national, regional, and local policies related to curriculum and instruction are being implemented in the classroom.

Results from the TIMSS Video Studies have been published in a series of reports. Click on the links below to view Highlights from the studies, or to view the full reports and video clips.

For more information about the TIMSS 1999 Video Study, go to the Frequently Asked Questions page.

Reports and articles related to the findings of the TIMSS Video Studies are available under Publications & Products.

The TIMSS 1995 Videotape Classroom Study

In 1995, the Third International Mathematics and Science Study (TIMSS) included a Videotape Classroom Study. This video study was an international videotape survey of eighth-grade mathematics lessons in Germany, Japan, and the United States. Funded by the National Center for Education Statistics (NCES) and the National Science Foundation, the 1995 video study was the first attempt to collect videotaped records of classroom instruction from nationally representative samples of teachers. The study was conducted in a total of 231 classrooms in Germany, Japan, and the United States and used multimedia database technology to manage and analyze the videos.

The Videotape Classroom Study had four goals:

  • To provide a rich source of information regarding what goes on inside eighth-grade mathematics classes in the three countries;
  • To develop objective observational measures of classroom instruction to serve as quantitative indicators, at a national level, of teaching practices in the three countries;
  • To compare actual mathematics teaching methods in the United States and the other countries with those recommended in current reform documents and with teachers’ perceptions of those recommendations;
  • To assess the feasibility of applying videotape methodology in future wider-scale national and international surveys of classroom instructional practices.

For the report on the methods and findings of the Videotape Classroom Study, click here.

Example lessons from the TIMSS 1995 Video Study were made available in the form of video vignettes of six eighth-grade lessons, two each from Germany, Japan, and the United States. These example lessons were taught by teachers who volunteered to be videotaped for the project. The video vignettes were originally made available on a CD-ROM: Video Examples from the TIMSS Videotape Classroom Study: Eighth Grade Mathematics in Germany, Japan, and the United States (NCES 98092). Now they are all available for viewing through the links below.