TIMSS 2023 Framework

Assessment or survey framework

The curriculum in mathematics and science (overarching concept)

  • The intended curriculum (the mathematics and science that students are expected to learn as defined by countries’ curriculum policies and publications; the characteristics of the education system that facilitates this learning).
  • The implemented curriculum (the mathematics and science that are taught in classrooms; the characteristics of teaching and teachers).
  • The attained curriculum (the mathematics and science that students have learned; their attitudes towards the respective subjects).

 

The mathematics assessment frameworks

Content domains (specifying the subject matter to be assessed)

  • Grade 4
    • Number
      • Whole numbers
      • Expressions, simple equations, and relationships
      • Fractions and decimals
    • Measurement and geometry
      • Measurement
      • Geometry
    • Data
      • Reading and displaying data
      • Interpreting, combining, and comparing data
  • Grade 8
    • Number
      • Integers
      • Fractions and decimals
      • Proportions, ratios, and percentages
    • Algebra
      • Expressions, operations, and equations
      • Relationships and functions
    • Geometry and measurement
    • Data and probability
      • Data
      • Probability

 

Cognitive domains, Grades 4 and 8 (specifying the thinking processes to be assessed as students engage with the content)

  • Knowing
    • Covers facts, concepts, and procedures
    • Assesses:
      • Recalling
      • Identifying
      • Ordering
      • Computing
  • Applying
    • Focuses on the ability of students to apply knowledge and conceptual understanding in a range of situations
    • Assesses:
      • Formulating
      • Implementing
      • Representing
  • Reasoning
    • Involves the logical, systematic thinking that students need to use to generate and justify solutions to problems, make inferences, and deal with complex relationships between mathematical objects
    • Assesses:
      • Analyzing
      • Integrating
      • Generalizing
      • Justifying

 

The science assessment frameworks

Content domains (specifying the subject matter to be assessed)

  • Grade 4
    • Life science
      • Characteristics and life processes of organisms
      • Life cycles, reproduction, and heredity
      • Organisms, environment, and their interactions
      • Ecosystems
      • Human health
    • Physical science
      • Classification and properties of matter and changes in matter
      • Forms of energy and energy transfer
      • Forces and motion
    • Earth science
      • Earth’s physical characteristics, resources, and history
      • Earth’s weather and climates
      • Earth in the solar system
  • Grade 8
    • Biology
      • Characteristics and life processes of organisms
      • Cells and their functions
      • Life cycles, reproduction, and heredity
      • Diversity, adaptation, and natural selection
      • Ecosystems
      • Human health
    • Chemistry
      • Composition of matter
      • Properties of matter
      • Chemical change
    • Physics
      • Physical states and changes in matter
      • Energy transformation and transfer
      • Light and sound
      • Electricity and magnetism
      • Motion and forces
    • Earth science
      • Earth’s structure and physical features
      • Earth’s processes, cycles, and history
      • Earth’s resources, their use, and conservation
      • Earth in the solar system and the universe

 

Cognitive domains, Grade 4 and 8 (specifying the thinking processes to be assessed as students engage with the content)

  • Knowing
    • Focuses on students’ knowledge of facts, relationships, processes, concepts and equipment
    • Assesses:
      • Recognizing
      • Describing
      • Providing examples
  • Applying
    • Focuses on students’ knowledge of facts, relationships, processes, concepts and equipment
    • Assesses:
      • Comparing/contrasting/classifying
      • Relating
      • Interpreting models
      • Interpreting information
      • Explaining
  • Reasoning
    • Focuses on requiring students to engage in reasoning to analyze data and other information, draw conclusions, extend their understanding to new situations, develop hypothesis and design scientific models and investigations
    • Assesses:
      • Predicting
      • Designing
      • Evaluating
      • Drawing conclusions
      • Analyzing
      • Synthesizing
      • Generalizing
      • Justifying

 

Science practices

  • Some items in the science assessment at both the fourth and the eighth grade assess one or more science practices together with content specified in the content domains and thinking processes specified in the cognitive domains.
  • TIMSS assesses the science practices primarily with the science PSIs, in which students conduct extended investigations and inquiries, and in doing so engage in one or more of the science practices. However, regular items in TIMSS can also incorporate one or more of the science practices.
  • These practices include skills from daily life and school studies that students use in a systematic way to conduct scientific inquiry.
  • The following five practices are assessed:
    1. Asking questions based on observations and theories
    2. Designing investigations and generating evidence
    3. Working with data
    4. Answering research questions
    5. Making arguments from evidence
Contextual or background framework
  • Home contexts
    • Home environment support
      • Home resources for learning
      • Language(s) spoken at home
      • Expectations for further education
    • Early learning experiences
      • Early literacy and numeracy activities
      • Preprimary education
    • The COVID-19 pandemic
      • Staying home from school
      • At-home learning

 

  • School contexts
    • School characteristics
      • Size and geographic location
    • Composition of the student body
      • Socioeconomic background
      • Language spoken in the school
      • Literacy and numeracy skills of entering student body
    • School resources
      • Resources for mathematics and science instruction
    • School climate
      • School emphasis on academic success
      • School emphasis on mathematics and science
      • Teacher job satisfaction and challenges
      • Students’ sense of school belonging
      • Parents’ perceptions of their child’s school
    • School discipline, safety, and bullying
      • School discipline and safety
      • Student bullying
    • Principal preparation and years of experience
    • The COVID-19 pandemic
      • School closure and remote learning 

 

  • Classroom contexts
    • Teacher characteristics
      • Preparation and years of experience
      • Professional development
    • Mathematics and science instruction
      • Instructional time
      • Instructional strategies
      • Instructional clarity
      • Emphasis on science inquiry
      • TIMSS mathematics and science topics taught
      • Homework
      • Classroom assessment
    • Information technology in the classroom
      • Access to digital devices for instruction
      • Uses of digital devices during instruction
      • Challenges using digital devices during instruction
    • Classroom climate
      • Classroom management
      • Instruction limited by student attributes

 

  • Student attributes
    • Student demographics
    • Attitudes toward mathematics and science
      • Liking mathematics and science
      • Confidence in mathematics and science
      • Valuing mathematics and science
    • Information technology and digital devices
      • Use of digital devices
      • Digital self-efficacy

 

  • National contexts
    • Organization of education system
      • System for preprimary education
      • Age of entry and retention policies
      • Number of years of school
      • Language(s) of instruction
      • Teacher and principal preparation
    • Mathematics and science curricula