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Diagram of the education system

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  • Diagram of education system in country language


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  • Education system in Germany

    Germany
    Overview of the education system (EAG 2019)
  • The expansion of tertiary education is supported by an increase in financial and human resources. However, 43% of total funds at this level are devoted to research and development (R&D), the second highest across the OECD.
  • Adults with upper secondary education have better employment prospects than a decade ago while the employment rate of tertiary-educated adults has remained the same. In particular, gender differences in the labour-market are lower among adults with upper secondary education than among those with tertiary education.
  • Smaller classes and longer teaching time characterise pre-primary education in Germany: there are nine children per teacher on average, slightly more than half the OECD average, and teaching time is 70% higher than on average across OECD countries.
  • High teacher salaries have contributed to higher expenditure on primary and secondary educational institutions in Germany compared to other OECD countries.
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    The following list displays indicators for which your selected country shows the highest and lowest values among countries. The list can be sorted by level of education or by age group. All rankings are calculated including available data from OECD and partner countries. Find out more about the methodology here.

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    Educational outcomes

    The proportion of 25-64 year-old men who have attained a general degree at the upper secondary or post-secondary level is one of the lowest among OECD and partner countries with available data. (3.7 %, rank 37/38 , 2018) Download Indicator

    The proportion of 25-64 year-old women who have attained a general degree at the upper secondary or post-secondary level is one of the lowest among OECD and partner countries with available data. (3 %, rank 38/38 , 2018) Download Indicator

    The proportion of 25-64 year-olds who attained a doctoral or equivalent tertiary education degree is one of the highest among countries with available data. (1.4 %, rank 6/36 , 2018) Download Indicator

    In Germany, the average age of upper secondary graduates from general programmes is one of the lowest among OECD and partner countries with available data (23.9 Years, rank 21/23 , 2017) Download Indicator

    Attainment by field of education

    The percentage of 25-64 year-olds with tertiary education who studied in the field of humanities (except languages), social sciences, journalism and information is one of the lowest among OECD countries and partner economies with available data. (7.4 %, rank 21/30 , 2018) Download Indicator

    The percentage of 25-64 year-olds with tertiary education who studied in the field of business and administration is one of the lowest among OECD countries and partner economies with available data. (7.8 %, rank 15/16 , 2018) Download Indicator

    The percentage of 25-64 year-olds with tertiary education who studied in the field of law is one of the highest among OECD countries and partner economies with available data. (3.1 %, rank 9/14 , 2018) Download Indicator

    The percentage of 25-64 year-olds with tertiary education who studied in the field of engineering, manufacturing and construction is one of the highest among OECD countries and partner economies with available data. (26 %, rank 3/32 , 2018) Download Indicator

    The percentage of 25-64 year-olds with tertiary education who studied in the field of health (nursing and associate health fields) is one of the lowest among OECD countries and partner economies with available data. (2.3 %, rank 13/14 , 2018) Download Indicator

    Participation in education

    The proportion of 25-64 years-old adults with tertiary education participating in formal education is low in Germany. (5.1 %, rank 33/36 , 2016) Download Indicator

    Among adults (25-64 years-old) with below upper secondary education, a high proportion participate in non-formal education. (26.7 %, rank 10/33 , 2016) Download Indicator

    In Germany the percentage of young people expected to enter short-cycle tertiary programmes during their lifetimes is comparatively low. (0 %, rank 35/36 , 2017) Download Indicator

    The enrolment rate of 40-64 year-olds in Germany is one of the lowest among OECD and partner countries with available data. (0.4 %, rank 36/39 , 2017) Download Indicator

    In Germany, the percentage of tertiary students enrolled in private institutions is one of the lowest among OECD and partner countries with available data. (10 %, rank 36/44 , 2017) Download Indicator

    In Germany, the share of part-time students in bachelor's programmes is relatively small. (10.7 %, rank 22/30 , 2017) Download Indicator

    In Germany, the share of part-time students in master's programmes is relatively small. (5.8 %, rank 27/30 , 2017) Download Indicator

    The share of part-time students in doctoral programmes in Germany is relatively large. (75.9 %, rank 4/29 , 2017) Download Indicator

    In Germany, the proportion of new female entrants into master's long first degree (LFD) programmes is relatively high. (62.2 %, rank 10/24 , 2017) Download Indicator

    Graduation expectancy

    The percentage of today's young people expected to graduate from a doctoral or equivalent programme in Germany ranks as one of the highest among OECD and partner countries with available data. (2.7 %, rank 5/39 , 2017) Download Indicator

    Germany has one of the lowest percentages of young people expected to graduate from short tertiary education programmes during their lifetime. (0 %, rank 31/32 , 2017) Download Indicator

    Excluding mobile students, Germany has one of the lowest percentages of young people expected to graduate from short tertiary education programmes during their lifetime. (0 %, rank 23/23 , 2017) Download Indicator

    Excluding mobile students, Germany has one of the lowest percentages of young people expected to graduate from short tertiary education before the age of 30. (0 %, rank 21/21 , 2017) Download Indicator

    Excluding mobile students, Germany has one of the highest percentages of young people expected to complete a doctorate or an equivalent education during their lifetime. (2.2 %, rank 1/29 , 2017) Download Indicator

    Graduation by gender

    The percentage of female graduates from upper secondary general programmes is one of the lowest among OECD countries and partner economies with available data. (47.8 %, rank 42/44 , 2017) Download Indicator

    In Germany, the share of female doctoral graduates in the field of business, administration and law is relatively low. (36.3 %, rank 36/41 , 2017) Download Indicator

    In Germany, the share of female doctoral graduates in the field of engineering, manufacturing and construction is relatively low. (19.8 %, rank 39/42 , 2017) Download Indicator

    The share of female graduates among post-secondary non-tertiary graduates from vocational programmes in Germany is relatively high. (60.4 %, rank 8/25 , 2017) Download Indicator

    Graduation by field of education

    The percentage of tertiary graduates in the field of natural sciences, mathematics and statistics is one of the highest among OECD and partner countries with available data. (9.3 %, rank 4/44 , 2017) Download Indicator

    The percentage of tertiary graduates in the field of engineering, manufacturing and construction is one of the highest among OECD and partner countries with available data. (21.7 %, rank 2/44 , 2017) Download Indicator

    The percentage of tertiary graduates in the field of health and welfare is one of the lowest among OECD and partner countries with available data. (7.3 %, rank 39/44 , 2017) Download Indicator

    The share of doctoral graduates in the field of arts and humaties in Germany is relatively small. (7.4 %, rank 41/45 , 2017) Download Indicator

    The share of doctoral graduates in the field of sciences, journalism and information in Germany is relatively small. (6.3 %, rank 40/45 , 2017) Download Indicator

    The share of doctoral graduates in the field of Natural sciences, mathematics and statistics in Germany is relatively large. (29.1 %, rank 8/45 , 2017) Download Indicator

    In Germany, the percentage of post-secondary non-tertiary vocational graduates in the field of services is relatively low. (7.2 %, rank 22/25 , 2017) Download Indicator

    Fields of education

    In Germany, the percentage of new entrants to tertiary education in the field of health and welfare is relatively low. (6.2 %, rank 34/35 , 2017) Download Indicator

    The percentage of national tertiary students enrolled in the field of health and welfare in Germany is relatively low. (7.6 %, rank 35/37 , 2017) Download Indicator

    The share of female among new entrants to doctoral programmes enrolled in the field of engineering, manufacturing and construction in Germany is relatively small. (23.2 %, rank 30/34 , 2017) Download Indicator

    In Germany, the share of female among new entrants to doctoral programmes enrolled in the field of health and welfare is relatively small. (54.8 %, rank 29/33 , 2017) Download Indicator

    In Germany, the share of male among new entrants to doctoral programmes enrolled in the field of information and communication technologies is relatively small. (70.6 %, rank 28/32 , 2017) Download Indicator

    Student mobility

    Germany is one of the most attractive destinations to foreign students compared to other OECD and partner countries with available data. (4.8 %, rank 5/46 , 2017) Download Indicator

    In Germany, the proportion of new international entrants into master's long first degreee (LFD) programmes is relatively high. (38.6 %, rank 2/20 , 2017) Download Indicator

    Student mobility by field of education

    The percentage of international tertiary students enrolled in the field of arts and humanities in Germany is relatively high. (16.6 %, rank 8/37 , 2017) Download Indicator

    The percentage of international tertiary students enrolled in the field of social sciences, journalism and information in Germany is relatively low. (7.7 %, rank 29/37 , 2017) Download Indicator

    The percentage of international tertiary students enrolled in the field of engineering, manufacturing and construction in Germany is relatively high. (29.8 %, rank 1/37 , 2017) Download Indicator

    Organisation of the education system

    In Germany, the total intended instruction time for primary students (in hours per year) is one of the shortest among OECD and partner countries with available data. (2896 Hours, rank 25/29 , 2019) Download Indicator

    In Germany, the intended instruction time for primary students, in hours per year, is one of the shortest among OECD and partner countries with available data. (724 Hours, rank 20/29 , 2019) Download Indicator

    Classes in lower secondary private institutions are comparatively large in Germany. (24 Students, rank 6/32 , 2016) Download Indicator

    Expenditure per student

    Annual expenditure per student from primary to tertiary level is one of the highest among OECD and partner countries with available data. (12583 USD Equivalent, rank 10/35 , 2016) Download Indicator

    Annual expenditure per pupil at the pre-primary level is one of the highest among OECD and partner countries with available data. (10101 USD Equivalent, rank 7/31 , 2016) Download Indicator

    Annual expenditure per secondary student is one of the highest among OECD and partner countries with available data. (12268 USD Equivalent, rank 9/35 , 2016) Download Indicator

    Annual expenditure per student for core and ancillary services, from primary to below-tertiary institutions is one of the highest among OECD and partner countries with available data. (11294 USD Equivalent, rank 9/35 , 2016) Download Indicator

    Expenditure per student for ancillary services on primary, secondary and post-secondary non-tertiary education in Germany is comparatively low. (302 USD Equivalent, rank 20/25 , 2016) Download Indicator

    In Germany, the total expenditure on educational institutions per full-time equivalent student in primary, secondary and post-secondary non-tertiary, is relatively high. (11294 USD Equivalent, rank 9/35 , 2016) Download Indicator

    Expenditure in education and national wealth

    In Germany, expenditure on primary through tertiary educational institutions as a percentage of GDP is one of the lowest among OECD countries and partner economies. (4.2 %, rank 26/35 , 2016) Download Indicator

    In Germany, expenditure on primary educational institutions as a percentage of GDP is comparatively low. (0.6 %, rank 35/35 , 2016) Download Indicator

    Public and private expenditure in education

    The share of private expenditure on pre-primary education is one of the largest among OECD and partner countries with available data. (18.8 %, rank 9/31 , 2016) Download Indicator

    The share of private expenditure on all levels below tertiary education is one of the largest among OECD and partner countries with available data. (12.9 %, rank 10/34 , 2016) Download Indicator

    The share of private expenditure on tertiary education is one of the smallest among OECD and partner countries with available data. (15.4 %, rank 26/35 , 2016) Download Indicator

    In Germany, total public expenditure on primary educational institutions as a percentage of total public expenditure is comparatively low. (1.4 %, rank 38/38 , 2016) Download Indicator

    Change in international expenditure on educational institutions for primary to tertiary education between 2010 and 2016 in Germany is one of the lowest among OECD and partner countries with available data. (-0.1 % points, rank 16/21 , 2016) Download Indicator

    The share of public expenditure on educational institutions, for tertiary education is comparatively large . (83 %, rank 7/35 , 2016) Download Indicator

    Expenditure on all children aged 3 to 5 enrolled in early childhood and primary education is one of the highest in Germany compared to OECD and partner countries with available data. (19 USD Equivalent, rank 10/30 , 2016) Download Indicator

    Tuition fees

    The estimated average annual tuition fee for national students in independent private institutions for a bachelor's or equivalent level education is one of the lowest among OECD and partner countries with available data. (4908 USD Equivalent, rank 11/15 , 2017) Download Indicator

    Teachers

    The number of days of instruction in a school year in lower secondary school is especially high. (193 Days, rank 8/33 , 2018) Download Indicator

    Ratio of student to teaching staff

    The number of students per teacher in tertiary institutions is one of the lowest among OECD and partner countries with available data. (12.1 Ratio, rank 25/30 , 2016) Download Indicator

    The number of pupils per teacher in pre-primary schools is one of the lowest among OECD and partner countries with available data. (9.5 Ratio, rank 27/28 , 2017) Download Indicator

    The ratio of students to teaching staff in post-secondary non-tertiary education is comparatively low in Germany. (12.9 Ratio, rank 11/15 , 2016) Download Indicator

    In Germany, the ratio of students to teaching staff in bachelor's and tertiary advanced research programmes is one of the lowest compared to other OECD and partner countries with available data. (12.09 Ratio, rank 19/23 , 2016) Download Indicator

    In Germany, the ratio of children to contact staff in pre-primary education is one of the lowest compared to other OECD and partner countries with available data. (8.7 Ratio, rank 17/21 , 2017) Download Indicator

    Who the teachers are

    The share of women among teaching staff in short-cycle tertiary education is one of the smallest among OECD and partner countries with available data. (40.7 %, rank 18/20 , 2017) Download Indicator

    The share of women among teaching staff in tertiary education is one of the smallest among OECD and partner countries with available data. (39.3 %, rank 29/36 , 2017) Download Indicator

    The percentage of primary to upper secondary teachers older than 50 is especially high. (42.3 %, rank 8/34 , 2017) Download Indicator

    Teachers' salaries

    After 15 years of experience, a lower secondary teacher with minimum qualification can expect to have one of the highest salaries among OECD and partner countries with available data. (80993 USD Equivalent, rank 2/33 , 2018) Download Indicator

    The ratio of lower secondary teachers' salaries to earnings of full-time, full-year workers with tertiary education is one of the highest among OECD and partner countries with available data. (1 Ratio, rank 4/27 , 2017) Download Indicator

    The average actual lower secondary teacher's salary among teachers aged between 25-64 is one of the highest per hour of net teaching time among OECD and partner countries with available data. (75904 USD Equivalent, rank 1/28 , 2017) Download Indicator

    After 15 years of experience, a lower secondary teacher with typical qualification can expect to have one of the highest salaries among OECD and partner countries with available data. (80993 USD Equivalent, rank 2/33 , 2018) Download Indicator

    Teachers' salaries progression

    The salary progression from the start to the top of the salary scale for a lower secondary school teacher is among the least rewarding among OECD and partner countries with available data. (1.31 Ratio, rank 29/34 , 2018) Download Indicator

    Starting salaries for teachers with minimum training in primary education are especially high. (60507 USD Equivalent, rank 2/37 , 2018) Download Indicator

    Salaries of primary school teachers with minimum training at the top of scale are especially high. (79355 USD Equivalent, rank 4/34 , 2018) Download Indicator

    Starting salaries for lower secondary teachers with minimum training are especially high. (67163 USD Equivalent, rank 2/37 , 2018) Download Indicator

    Salaries of lower secondary teachers with minimum training after 10 years of experience are especially high. (77499 USD Equivalent, rank 3/34 , 2018) Download Indicator

    In primary education, the salary ratio of teachers with maximum qualifications at the top of the salary scale to those with minimum training and starting salaries is comparatively low. (1.31 Ratio, rank 30/34 , 2017) Download Indicator

    In lower secondary education, the salary ratio of teachers with maximum qualifications at the top of the salary scale to those with minimum training and starting salaries is comparatively low. (1.31 Ratio, rank 31/34 , 2017) Download Indicator

    Employment and educational attainment

    The employment rate among 25-64 year-olds with a general upper secondary or post-secondary non-tertiary education is relatively low compared to other OECD and partner countries. (65.8 %, rank 35/38 , 2018) Download Indicator

    Unemployment and educational attainment

    The unemployment rate among 25-64 year-olds with a bachelor's or equivalent tertiary education degree is one of the lowest of all OECD countries and partner economies for which data are available. (1.7 %, rank 41/44 , 2018) Download Indicator

    The unemployment rate among 25-64 year-olds with a doctoral or equivalent tertiary education degree is one of the lowest of all OECD countries and partner economies for which data are available. (1.3 %, rank 20/21 , 2018) Download Indicator

    Among the unemployed population aged between 25 and 64, with below upper secondary education, the share of those who have been unemployed for less than 3 months is one of the smallest in Germany, compared to other OECD countries. (19.2 %, rank 23/31 , 2018) Download Indicator

    Among the unemployed population aged between 25 and 64 with below upper secondary education, the share of those who have been unemployed for at least 12 months is one of the largest in Germany, compared to other OECD countries. (55.9 %, rank 8/38 , 2018) Download Indicator

    Earnings and educational attainment

    The proportion of female full-time earners among all earners aged 35 to 44 without upper secondary education is comparatively low. (13.3 %, rank 28/29 , 2016) Download Indicator

    The proportion of female full-time earners among all earners aged 35 to 44 with tertiary education is comparatively low. (36.7 %, rank 27/29 , 2016) Download Indicator

    Earnings of women as a percentage of men's earnings (among 25-64 year-olds with upper secondary education and income from employment) are one of the highest among countries with available data. (86.4 %, rank 3/37 , 2016) Download Indicator

    Earnings by field of education

    Earnings of tertiary-educated adults who studied in the field of education are low, compared to earnings of all tertiary-educated adults in Germany. (72 %, rank 13/15 , 2017) Download Indicator

    Earnings of tertiary-educated adults who studied in the field of arts and humanities, social sciences, journalism and information are low, compared to earnings of all tertiary-educated adults in Germany. (66.7 %, rank 14/14 , 2017) Download Indicator

    Earnings of tertiary-educated adults who studied in the field of business, administration and law are high, compared to earnings of all tertiary-educated adults in Germany. (120.6 %, rank 2/15 , 2017) Download Indicator

    Earnings of tertiary-educated adults who studied in the field of natural sciences, mathematics and statistics are low, compared to earnings of all tertiary-educated adults in Germany. (90.5 %, rank 14/14 , 2017) Download Indicator

    Earnings of tertiary-educated adults who studied in the field of engineering, manufacturing and construction are high, compared to earnings of all tertiary-educated adults in Germany. (119.7 %, rank 6/15 , 2017) Download Indicator

    Neither in education nor employed

    The proportion of 15-19 year-olds who are neither employed nor in education or training is comparatively small in Germany. (3.4 %, rank 33/40 , 2018) Download Indicator

    The percentage of 15-19 years-old men neither employed nor in education or training is one of the lowest among OECD countries and partner economies with available data. (3.1 %, rank 35/39 , 2018) Download Indicator

    Migrant background

    The proportion of 25-34 year-old foreign-born people who have attained tertiary education is one of the lowest among OECD and partner countries with available data. (24.7 %, rank 26/30 , 2015) Download Indicator

    Earnings of foreign-born aged between 25 and 64 who work full- and part-time with tertiary education are low compared to those of native-born with the same characteristics. (86 Index, rank 12/21 , 2016) Download Indicator

    The percentage of foreign-born aged between 15 and 29 who are neither employed nor in education and training is one of the highest among OECD and partner countries with available data. (24.1 %, rank 6/29 , 2015) Download Indicator

    The percentage of native-born 15-29 year-olds neither employed nor in education and training is one of the lowest among OECD and partner countries with available data. (6.6 %, rank 27/30 , 2015) Download Indicator

    The percentage of native-born 15-29 year-olds not in education is one of the lowest among OECD and partner countries with available data. (44.3 %, rank 26/30 , 2015) Download Indicator

    Social outcomes

    Compared to other countries with available data, the percentage of adults (25-64 years old) with tertiary education who actively participate in social media on a daily basis is low in Germany. (24.7 %, rank 25/29 , 2015) Download Indicator

    Among employed adults (25-64 years-old) with tertiary education, a large share have difficulties to fulfill their family responsabilities because of their jobs, compared to other countries with available data. (63.4 %, rank 4/32 , 2015) Download Indicator

    Weekly working hours among employed 25-64 year-olds with below upper secondary education are short in Germany compared to other OECD countries. (33.3 Hours/week, rank 27/28 , 2015) Download Indicator

    Weekly working hours among employed 25-64 year-olds with upper secondary or post-secondary non-tertiary education are short in Germany compared to other OECD countries. (35.9 Hours/week, rank 26/28 , 2015) Download Indicator

    Among employed 25-64 year-olds with below upper secondary education, a small share have high flexibility of working hours. (17.2 %, rank 21/28 , 2015) Download Indicator

    Among employed 25-64 year-olds with tertiary education, a large share have high flexibility of working hours. (42.2 %, rank 6/28 , 2015) Download Indicator


    The data table will display up to six selected countries.
    General findings
    • In 2018, 44% of 25-34 year-olds held a tertiary degree, compared to 35% in 2008, on average across OECD countries.
    • Tertiary-educated adults also reap higher earnings, although this varies by field of study. Their advantage increases with age too: 25-34 year-olds with tertiary education earn 38% more than their peers with upper secondary education while 45-54 year-olds earn 70% more.
    • While engineering, manufacturing and construction, and information and communication technologies are two fields most commonly associated with the best labour market outcomes, only 14% of graduates earned a degree in the former and 4% earned a degree in the latter in 2017.
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    • Although graduation from upper secondary education increased by 6 percentage points between 2005 and 2017, 15% of 25-34 year-olds did not attain upper secondary education in 2018, on average across OECD countries.
    • In some countries, vocational programmes are prominent at the upper secondary level. On average across OECD countries, 40% of first-time upper secondary graduates earned a vocational qualification in 2017; in Austria, the Czech Republic, the Slovak Republic and Slovenia, more than 66% of this population did.
    • At the lower secondary level, the average class shrank by 6% while teachers' statutory salaries increased by 8% between 2005 and 2017, on average across OECD countries.
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    • In 2017, more than one in three children under the age of three were enrolled in early childhood education and care services, on average across OECD countries - an increase of 7 percentage points compared to 2010.
    • Between the age of 3 to 5, on average across OECD countries, 87% of children are enrolled in pre-primary and primary education.
    • Annual expenditure per child in early childhood development programmes was greater than in pre-primary education in 2016 on average across OECD countries. However, as a share of GDP, expenditure on early childhood development is lower.
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    • In 2016, expenditure per tertiary student amounted to USD 15 556, approximately one-third of which was devoted to research and development.
    • Private sources financed more than 30% of the expenditure, on average, at the tertiary level compared to 10% at primary, secondary and post-secondary non-tertiary level.
    • OECD countries spent an average of 3.5% of GDP on primary, secondary and post-secondary non-tertiary institutions in 2016, and public expenditure at this level increased by 18% since 2005.
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    • About 10% of primary and secondary teachers are under the age of 30, on average across OECD countries.
    • While the teaching profession is dominated by women, the share of female teachers decreases with the level of education taught: almost all teachers at the pre-primary level are women, however they make up less than half of the teaching force at tertiary level.
    • Salaries tend to increase with the level of education taught, but teachers' earnings remain between 78% and 93% of the earnings of other tertiary-educated adults.
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    Key
    Country Reviews for Germany

    Note: These values should be interpreted with care since they are influenced by countries' specific contexts and trade-offs. In education, there is often no simple most- or least-efficient model. For instance, the share of private expenditure in education must be read against other measures designed to mitigate inequities, such as loans and grants; longer learning time is an opportunity to convey more and better content to students, but may hinder investments in other important areas. If you want further information on the nature of different variables, please take the time to read the analysis and contextual information, available at the website for each publication.
    All rankings for individual variables are compiled on the basis of OECD and G20 countries for which data are available. The OECD average includes only OECD countries which are listed here: http://www.oecd.org/about/membersandpartners/

    *TALIS averages are based on all countries participating in the TALIS survey, including partner countries and economies. This explains the difference between the OECD average and the TALIS average. Data from the TALIS survey and Education at a Glance (EAG) may differ. See Annex E of the TALIS technical report and Annex 3 of EAG 2019 for more details about the data collections.

    B-S-J-Z (China) refers to the four PISA-participating provinces/municipalities of the People's Republic of China: Beijing, Shanghai, Jiangsu and Zhejiang.

    For additional notes, please refer to annexes in the list of links below the introductory country profile text.