Friday, July 26, 2013

Education Spending and Performance Across 12 Countries

Here is an interesting infograph from USC:

It gives a clear visual of the fact that while the US spends the most per student, our results quickly fall off the mark.  I feel like people often look at this and then "blame the teacher."  You hear things like "teachers get paid too much for doing too little," or "Yeah, I'd like a three month paid vacation, too!" and most often, "Cut education spending!"

One important thing missing from this infograph, however, is how and where that money is spent.  I would find this much more interesting if it provided a breakdown WHERE that money is spent in each country and then relate that to student outcomes.  That would be a much better indicator of how we could make policy changes for the better.

Your thoughts?


  1. That is a very interesting infographic. Like you, I would like to see a breakdown of where the said monies is spent. I am guessing that makes a huge difference...

    I would also be interested to see what tests the students took to get the average US score??

    Thanks for sharing!

    Mind Sparks

    1. I wonder about the tests too. I know there is an international test that is given to some schools every year (or so) that is then used as a representation for the country as a whole. I don't know if school selection is completely random or if it is random within certain parameters to ensure that small and large, rural and urban, etc. schools are properly represented.

      I would assume that the test is the same for all countries. Otherwise, the data gleaned from it would result in a poor comparison with little validity. (But it wouldn't be completely surprising if that was the case!)



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