ICESCO Ministerial Conference on PISA Convenes in Baku

The 2nd ICESCO Ministerial Conference on PISA kicked off in Baku, Azerbaijan, bringing together 40+ representatives from 15 countries to discuss adapting assessment frameworks to unique educational landscapes. ICESCO Director General Salim bin Muhammed Al-Malik emphasized the significance of PISA assessments and the challenges posed by digital devices in education.

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Nitish Verma
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ICESCO Ministerial Conference on PISA Convenes in Baku

ICESCO Ministerial Conference on PISA Convenes in Baku

The 2nd ICESCO Ministerial Conference on PISA (Program for International Student Assessment) kicked off in Baku, Azerbaijan on May 13, 2024. The two-day conference, themed "Overview of PISA 2022 results: global and regional trends," brings together over 40 representatives from 15 countries to discuss adapting assessment frameworks to unique educational landscapes and developing more effective, relevant assessment systems.

Why this matters: The conference's focus on adapting assessment frameworks to unique educational contexts has significant implications for the future of education globally, as it can inform policy decisions and improve student outcomes. Moreover, the discussion on the impact of digital devices on education can help policymakers and educators develop strategies to mitigate distractions and enhance learning.

Organized by Azerbaijan's Ministry of Science and Education and Institute of Education, in collaboration with the Islamic World Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (ICESCO) and the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD), the conference aims to identify key points and best practices to tailor assessment frameworks to each country's specific educational context. Participating countries include Uzbekistan, Kazakhstan, Saudi Arabia, Qatar, Egypt, United Arab Emirates, Bahrain, Latvia, Nigeria, Malaysia, Morocco, Brunei, Lebanon, Oman, and Gambia.

In his opening remarks, ICESCO Director General Salim bin Muhammed Al-Malik emphasized the significance of PISA assessments in evaluating student performance. "PISA assessment remains an important instrument," he stated. However, he also highlighted the challenges posed by digital devices in the educational system. "While integrating digital advancements into education is imperative, concerns arise regarding student distraction through digital devices," Al-Malik noted, adding that up to 60% of 15-year-old students show low productivity in the assessment process due to digital distractions.

The COVID-19 pandemic has also had a profound impact on education systems worldwide. "After exiting the crisis, the main task ahead is the consideration of the educational achievements of students, their emotional and physical aspects. This should be at all levels of education," Al-Malik stressed. He further emphasized the importance of applying artificial intelligence and digital technology in education, with member countries contributing their own aspects and establishing a group of experts on education assessment.

PISA, launched in 2000 by the OECD, is the largest international study of education, assessing the knowledge and skills of 15-year-old students in mathematics, reading, and science every three years. The study enables countries to compare their education policies and outcomes, and make data-driven decisions to improve their education systems.

Looking ahead, Al-Malik highlighted ongoing preparations for significant changes in the education system by 2027. "In general, the acquisition of new skills is key. It is necessary to prepare the future workforce according to contemporary requirements. We can have the opportunity to influence the training and education process. The education system should be stable," he concluded.

The 2nd ICESCO Ministerial Conference on PISA serves as a platform for international collaboration and knowledge sharing, enabling countries to address pressing issues in education and develop strategies for adapting assessment frameworks to their unique contexts. As the conference progresses, participants will explore areas of convergence and divergence between the priorities of ICESCO member states, assessed skills and areas, assessment methodologies, and contextual data collection instruments of international assessments.

Key Takeaways

  • 2nd ICESCO Ministerial Conference on PISA held in Baku, Azerbaijan on May 13, 2024.
  • Conference focuses on adapting assessment frameworks to unique educational contexts.
  • Digital devices distract 60% of 15-year-old students, affecting productivity.
  • PISA assessments evaluate student performance in math, reading, and science.
  • Conference aims to develop strategies for improving education systems globally.