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Measuring up: Canadian Results of the OECD PISA Study – The Performance of Canada's Youth in Science, Reading, and Mathematics – 2015 First Results for Canadians Aged 15


Results from PISA 2015 were released on December 6, 2016.


Seventy-two countries and economies took part in PISA 2015. Over half a million 15-year-old students, including approximately 20,000 Canadians, were tested on their skills and knowledge in three core learning areas: science, reading, and mathematics.


The main focus was science, which was assessed through:


  • three science competencies: explaining phenomena scientifically, evaluating and designing scientific enquiries, and interpreting data and evidence scientifically;
  • two knowledge types: content and procedural/epistemic;
  • three content areas: physical systems, living systems, and Earth and space systems; and
  • three contexts: personal, local/national, and global.


As well, PISA 2015 measured students' interest in and awareness of science and environmental issues as well as their perceived value of scientific approaches.


Reading and mathematics were assessed as minor domains.


Canada is releasing its own companion report to provide further information on student performance at the provincial level. Results are compared to other participating countries and across Canadian provinces.


Canada's participation in PISA 2015 was made possible through close collaboration between CMEC and Employment and Social Development Canada.

Further information about PISA can be found on the OECD Web site.

PISA 2015 draft frameworks are available at:

Sample test questions can be accessed at: