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Portugal
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Data profiles:



Portugal
Student performance (PISA 2022)
  • In mathematics, the main topic of PISA 2022, 15-year-olds in score 472 points compared to an average of 472 points in OECD countries.
  • On average, 15-year-olds score 477 points in reading compared to an average of 476 points in OECD countries.
  • In Portugal, the average performance in science of 15-year-olds is 484 points, compared to an average of 485 points in OECD countries.
  • Average 2022 results were down compared to 2018 in mathematics and reading, and about the same as in 2018 in science.
  • In Portugal, 70% of students attained at least Level 2 proficiency in mathematics (OECD average: 69%). At a minimum, these students can interpret and recognize, without direct instructions, how a simple situation can be represented mathematically
  • Some 7% of students in Portugal were top performers in mathematics, meaning that they attained Level 5 or 6 in the PISA mathematics test (OECD average: 9%). At these levels, students can model complex situations mathematically, and can select, compare and evaluate appropriate problem-solving strategies for dealing with them.
  • In Portugal, 32% of students (the largest share) were in the top international quintile of the socio-economic scale, meaning that they were among the most advantaged students who took the PISA test in 2022. Their average score in mathematics was 522 score points.
  • In Portugal socio-economically advantaged students (the top 25% in terms of socio-economic status) outperformed disadvantaged students (the bottom 25%) by 101 score points in mathematics. This is similar to the average difference between the two groups (93 score points) across OECD countries.
  • As in other PISA participating countries and economies, socio-economic status was a predictor of performance in mathematics, it accounted for 18% of the variation in mathematics performance in PISA 2022 in Portugal (compared to 15% on average across OECD countries).
  • Boys outperformed girls in mathematics by 11 score points; girls outperformed boys in reading by 21 score points in Portugal. Globally, in mathematics, boys outperformed girls in 40 countries and economies, girls outperformed boys in another 17 countries or economies. In reading, girls, on average, scored above boys in all but two countries and economies that participated in PISA 2022 (79 out of 81).
  • The share of immigrant students has increased in Portugal to 11% in 2022 (7% in 2012). In 2022, 7% of 15-year-old students were first-generation immigrants, meaning that they were born in another country/economy, and their families moved to Portugal only in recent years.
  • In mathematics, the average difference in performance between immigrant and non-immigrant students was 32 score points in favour of non-immigrant students, a significant difference. After accounting for students' socio-economic profile, a significant difference of 25 score points in favour of non-immigrant students was observed.
  • In Portugal, 42% of students reported that their school building was closed for more than three months due to COVID-19. On average across OECD countries, 51% of students experienced similarly long school closures.
  • Some 17% of students in Portugal reported that they had repeated a grade at least once (OECD average: 9%) after entering primary school. Grade repetition tends to be less prevalent in high performing systems.
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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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    Creative thinking

    Portugal shows a low composite index of participation in creative activities at school (average=0, standard deviation of the OECD average=1). (-0.34 PISA Index, rank 70/72 , 2022) Download Indicator

    Participation in education

    The difference in grade repetition between advantaged students and disadvantaged students is one of the largest among 15-year-old students. (-26.3 %, rank 72/76 , 2022) Download Indicator

    Portugal registered one of the smallest changes between 2018 and 2022 in the percentage of students who had repeated a grade at least once in primary, lower secondary or upper secondary school. (-9.4 %, rank 36/39 , 2022) Download Indicator

    School climate

    The change between PISA 2018 and PISA 2022 in the percentage of students who reported that they skipped some classes at least once in the two weeks prior to the PISA test is smaller in Portugal than in other OECD and partner countries/economies. (-28.6 % points, rank 59/62 , 2022) Download Indicator

    Students who reported that they had missed school for more than three consecutive months at any education level at least once are proportionally less in number in Portugal than in other OECD and partner countries/economies. (3.7 %, rank 71/74 , 2022) Download Indicator

    Portugal has a relatively small difference in mathematics performance between students having missed school for more than three consecutive months at least once at any education level and those who did not (after accounting for students' and schools' socio-economic profile). (-58 PISA Score points, rank 68/71 , 2022) Download Indicator

    Classroom environment

    School principals report having one of the largest shortage of education staff among countries and economies participating in PISA. (0.84 PISA Index, rank 5/69 , 2022) Download Indicator

    Portugal has one of the smallest share of students in schools that group students by abillity for some subjects. (12 %, rank 78/80 , 2022) Download Indicator

    Student well-being

    In Portugal, the percentage of students who did not eat because there was not enough money to buy food is particularly small compared to the other OECD or partner countries/economies. (2.6 %, rank 66/66 , 2022) Download Indicator

    Performance and socio-economic status

    Portugal has one of the smallest differences in mathematics score associated with repeating a grade among OECD and partner countries/economies, after accounting for students' and schools' socio-economic profile. (-86 PISA Score points, rank 73/75 , 2022) Download Indicator

    COVID-19 effects on education

    Compared to other OECD and partner countries/economies, students in Portugal have a relatively strong perseverance. (0.24 PISA Index, rank 4/50 , 2022) Download Indicator

    In Portugal, students are characterized by their strong cooperation, when compared to other OECD and partner countries/economies, as measured by the PISA index of cooperation. (0.39 PISA Index, rank 1/39 , 2022) Download Indicator

    Portugal is one of the OECD and partner countries/economies with the highest level of empathy, as measured by the PISA index of empathy. (0.18 PISA Index, rank 4/43 , 2022) Download Indicator


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    General findings
    
    
    • Singapore scored significantly higher than all other countries/economies in mathematics (575 points) and, along with Hong Kong (China), Japan, Korea, Macao (China), and Chinese Taipei, outperformed all other countries and economies in mathematics. Another 17 countries also performed above the OECD average (472 points), ranging from Estonia (510 points) to New Zealand (479 points).
    • Boys outperformed girls in mathematics by nine score points and girls outperformed boys in reading by 24 score points on average across OECD countries. In science, the performance difference between boys and girls is not significant.
    • An average of 69% of students are at least basically proficient in mathematics in OECD countries. This means they are beginning to demonstrate the ability and initiative to use mathematics in simple real-life situations.
    • In 16 out of 81 countries/economies participating in PISA 2022, more than 10% of students attained Level 5 or 6 proficiency, meaning they are high-performing: they understand that a problem is quantitative in nature and can formulate complex mathematical models to solve it. By contrast, less than 5% of students are high-performing in 42 countries/economies.
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    • Singapore scored significantly higher than all other countries/economies in reading (543 points) and science (561 points). Behind Singapore, Ireland performed as well as Estonia, Japan, Korea and Chinese Taipei while another 14 education systems performed above the OECD average in reading (476 points), ranging from Macao (China) (510 points) to Italy (482 points).
    • About three out of four students have achieved basic proficiency in reading in OECD countries.
    • In reading, an OECD average of 7% of students attained the highest proficiency levels of 5 or 6. In 13 countries/economies, more than 10% of students are top performers in reading.
    • No change in the OECD average over consecutive PISA assessments up to 2018 has ever exceeded five points in reading: in PISA 2022, however, the OECD average dropped by about 10 score points in reading compared to PISA 2018.. The unprecedented drops reading point to the shock effect of COVID-19 on most countries.
    • Only four countries and economies improved their performance between PISA 2018 and 2022 in all three subjects: Brunei Darussalam, Cambodia, the Dominican Republic and Chinese Taipei.
    • Trend analysis of PISA results reveals a decades-long decline that began well before the pandemic. In reading, performances peaked in 2012 and 2009, respectively, before dipping while performance began a downward descent in mathematics before 2018 in Australia, Belgium, Canada, the Czech Republic, Finland, Hungary, Iceland, Korea, the Netherlands, New Zealand, the Slovak Republic and Switzerland.
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    • Mean performance in science remained stable.
    • In science, the highest-performing education systems are Singapore, Japan, Macao (China), Chinese Taipei, Korea, Estonia, Hong Kong (China) and Canada. Finland performed as well as Canada in science. In addition to these nine countries and economies, another 15 education systems also performed above the OECD average in science (485 points), ranging from Australia (507 points) to Belgium (491 points).
    • About three out of four students have achieved basic proficiency science in OECD countries.
    • In science, an OECD average of 7% of students attained the highest proficiency levels of 5 or 6. In 14 countries/economies, more than 10% of students are top performers in science.
    • Only four countries and economies improved their performance between PISA 2018 and 2022 in all three subjects: Brunei Darussalam, Cambodia, the Dominican Republic and Chinese Taipei.
    • Trend analysis of PISA results reveals a decades-long decline that began well before the pandemic. In science, performances peaked in 2012 and 2009, respectively, before dipping. while performance began a downward descent in mathematics before 2018 in Australia, Belgium, Canada, the Czech Republic, Finland, Hungary, Iceland, Korea, the Netherlands, New Zealand, the Slovak Republic and Switzerland.
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    • Socio-economically advantaged students scored 93 points more in mathematics than disadvantaged students on average across OECD countries. The performance gap attributed to students' socio-economic status is greater than 93 score points in 22 countries or economies and 50 points or fewer in 13 countries or economies.
    • Boys outperformed girls in mathematics by nine score points and girls outperformed boys in reading by 24 score points on average across OECD countries. In science, the performance difference between boys and girls is not significant.
    • Non-immigrant students scored 29 points more than immigrant students in mathematics on average across OECD countries but non-immigrant students scored only five points more than immigrant students once socio-economic status and language spoken at home had been accounted for.
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    • Between 2018 and 2022 trends in students' sense of belonging at school were mixed, with equal proportions of countries/economies showing stable, improving or deteriorating trends. Of the 47 education systems with improving or stable trends, only 20 maintained or attained a level of students' sense of belonging at school that was at or above the OECD average. 
    • Around 10% of students reported feeling unsafe on their way to or from school, or in places outside of the classroom, on average across OECD countries. Some 20% of students reported that they are bullied at least a few times a month.
    • Overall, students felt more confident about using digital technology for learning remotely during future school closures than they felt about taking responsibility for their own learning. For instance, on average across OECD countries, about three out of four students reported that they feel confident or very confident about using a learning-management system, a school learning platform or a video communication program, as well as about finding learning resources online on their own.
    • Students' experience with learning at home was more positive in systems that were better prepared for remote learning. However, when learning remotely, 40% of all students reported feeling lonely and 50% of all students reported feeling anxious about schoolwork and that they fell behind in their studies; and three in ten students reported that teachers were not available when needed, on average across OECD countries. 
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    • Singapore, Korea, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, Estonia and Finland are the highest-performing systems in creative thinking, significantly above the OECD average. Students in Singapore score 41 points on average in creative thinking.
    • There is a large performance gap in creative thinking between the highest-performing and lowest-performing country of 28 score points – or around four proficiency levels. 97 out of 100 students in the five best-performing countries performed above the average student in the five lowest performing countries.
    • Academic excellence is not a pre-requisite for excellence in creative thinking. While around half of all students who performed at the highest level in creative thinking performed at the highest level in mathematics, similar proportions of students within the third quintile of creative thinking performance scored within the second, third and fourth quintiles, respectively, in mathematics. However, very few students below a baseline proficiency in mathematics excelled in creative thinking.
    • In no country or economy did boys outperform girls in creative thinking, with girls scoring 3 points higher in creative thinking on average across the OECD. The gender gap is significant in all countries/economies after accounting for mathematics performance and in around half of all countries/economies even after accounting for students’ reading performance.
    • Students with higher socio-economic status performed better in creative thinking, with advantaged students scoring around 9.5 points higher than their disadvantaged peers on average across the OECD. In general, the strength of the association between socio-economic status and performance is weaker in creative thinking than it is for mathematics, reading and science.
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    Key
    Diagram of funding flows - Portugal

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    Key
    Country Reviews for Portugal

    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/

    Reference years displayed in the Education GPS correspond to the most common year of reference among countries for which data is available on each variable. Data for the latest available year is preferred and some countries may have provided data refering to a more recent or late year. To know more about possible exceptions on data please click on the "Download Indicator" link on each variable. When a year of reference corresponds to a school year encompassing two years, the reference reads as follows: 2018 for school year 2017/2018.

    *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 averages. 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 2021 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.