How can a study comparing children’s early learning be expanded for other countries?

Implementing a pilot study on how children’s early learning can be developed


The National Center for Education Statistics (NCES) has long supported a variety of international studies to collect and report data in the U.S. and other countries.

These studies help NCES provide comparable indicators on student performance and schooling practices across countries.

The International Early Learning Study (IELS) is a new initiative of the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD). Its goal is to develop a detailed understanding of how children’s early learning can be developed.

NCES is implementing the U.S. pilot study of IELS to see if its model can be expanded to other countries.


The pilot study will administer one-on-one, tablet-based assessments to children; sampled children’s teachers and parents will be interviewed via web surveys.

Unlike U.S. participation in existing international studies, IELS includes a parent interview, and children are linked to specific teachers so that teachers can report on individual students.


This pilot effort will provide a model that can be expanded in future years.


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