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Qualification of the OECD PIAAC 2013 shocking survey

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kerrin

Sceala Clann T.D.
Location: Wicklow






Sceala Irish Craic Forum Discussion:     Qualification of the OECD PIAAC 2013 shocking survey

Program for the International Assessment of Adult Competencies (PIAAC) survey 2013

Background to PIAAC
As part of its Programme for the International Assessment of Adult Competencies (PIAAC), the OECD collects and analyses data that assist governments in assessing, monitoring and analysing the level and distribution of skills among their adult populations as well as the utilisation of skills in different contexts.

The Survey of Adult Skills, implemented in 24 countries, and the Education and Skills Online Assessment for individuals are part of the package of tools available to support countries develop, implement and evaluate policies that foster both the development of skills and the optimal use of existing skills.


As a keen Data analyst hobbyist .......I am appalled at the PIAAC latest study, and especially by the general reaction to their findings.

Why am I shocked? Not because of any findings of PIAAC.
I am shocked because the findings of PIAAC are presented as the world's most reliable and by default influential, reflection of the competencies of a nations adult population.
They are not ... not even remotely ...because the data collected is useless.

Based entirely on the conditions and standards that PIAAC used to obtain their findings ..... there is no doubt that these PIAAC studies are of little value.
In terms of analysis for targeting improvement in a nations Adult Competencies ...PIAAC 2013, is of no use or value either nationally or internationally.

This latest PIAAC study is fundamentally flawed ... it does not produce any data that be then shown as median indicators, or even any credible value that is typical of any adult group anywhere ...as a consequence it does not reveal any median indicators that can be used for either national or international comparison.
This is because PIAAC standards can not possibly show any national or international median indicator .....their survey standards conditions used are incapable of producing such.

Just one example that highlights how useless this PIAAC study is ...why it should not be taken seriously for any debate or discussion.

Ireland with a population of around 4.6 million
Almost 6000 people between 16-65 years old surveyed.

The USA with a population of around 313 million
5010 people between 16-65 years old surveyed.

In context of PIAAC survey being a purported Program for the International Assessment of Adult Competencies
....Hopefully I do not need to elaborate the above not so minor example detail, to you the reader.

This shocking, comical international context of PIAAC, leaves out the many other comical contextual realities of this purported study .....such as

That those tested did so at home with access to computers and were given gift vouchers to complete ...at least cso.ie clarified this was so in Ireland.

That there was no requirement to ensure a typical age group range ...16-65 years old was considered by some genius as just fine.
As a consequence we have no way of knowing from PIAAC ....if the 5010 also surveyed in the Netherlands were mostly under 20 ... or over 50.

16 year olds and a 65 year old
We are of course talking age groups of almost different worlds.
Mobile phones texting internet generation .....to a generation that would have experienced a very different teaching environment ...many of who would have been working full time for a few years by the time they were 16 years old.

Surely someone must have raised the issue ..... that there is a natural difference of Competencies expected from a typical 16 year old than a 65 year old, and between the age generational ranges ....and that a standard condition had to be put in place .....to ensure a even and consistent spread of ages between 16-65.
After all, this multi million $ survey was going to present itself as aProgram for the International Assessment of Adult Competencies

If anyone did raise the issue PIAAC managers thought it irrelevant, because no such standard was required or put in place.

International Assessment of Adult Competencies?
No, despite the Multi $million cost, PIAAC most definitely can not be credibly described or considered as being such a survey.

PIAAC data collection model is not so much flawed as it is utterly useless for purpose.

Program for the International Assessment of Adult Competencies (PIAAC) latest report 2013

Typical reaction to PIAAC 2013 in Ireland

Our standards are poor and dropping

Typical reaction to PIAAC 2013 in the USA

Our standards are poor and dropping

Typical reaction to PIAAC 2013 in the UK

Our standards are poor and dropping


It appears the wider world's media just accept these PIAAC findings without the need for any qualification.

Why... when the study is not scientific ... not based on credible standards ..... and is of no practical use to any Nation.

In a nutshell, PIAAC does not add up. It is not just the habitual Cynic who will conclude that the only obvious benefit of this study was the jobs createdd by for PLC.'s who did the data collecting.
The math suggests no other obvious good cause.

Put it like this ....if a program similar to PIAAC placed into another context, was presented by a data collection standards organization, in application to a Governmental dept, such as a foods or medicine authority ....it would not even be considered remotely as a credible tender.

PIAAC reveals nothing, it is definitely not a credible National or International Assessment of Adult Competencies.

Unfortunately one would have had to study the conditions approved by OECD to conclude this about PIAAC ....it appears no one in the worlds' mainstream media actually has.

Will the Emperors new clothes ever fit ....when we have so many in positions of influence who have no eye or care for detail.


On a ending note of irreverence. In each of the 24 nations foolish enough to pay for the useless study .....PIAAC required 5000 individuals between 16-65 surveyed.
No other qualification was necessary, not even if they were a national of that nation.

As noted above by cso.ie Ireland actually had almost 6000 return the survey.
Possibly the 30 gift voucher each received had the Irish out in such numbers.

According to the Australian Government site on PIAAC, their data collectors just ignored the rules.
How many Australians were surveyed?
The 2011 Australian sample included approximately 8,000 respondents.

What age range will be included for PIAAC?
The OECD requires respondents to be aged between 16 and 65 years. The Australian sample consisted of respondents aged between 15 and 74 years.


That the survey of PIAAC has made headline news across the globe, presented as alarming fact and needing no academic of journalist qualification ....is all too predictable. That the general public generally debate it without a question ... is indeed shocking.

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