We thought our readers might be interested in this extract from the PISA web site
Performance Indicators of Student Achievement [PISA]
Are boys and girls ready for the digital age?
PISA IN FOCUS 2012/01 (January) – © OECD 2012
• More than 17% of students in Australia, Korea and New Zealand are top performers in digital reading, while fewer than 3% of students in Austria, Chile and Poland are.
• On average, girls outperform boys in digital reading; however, the gender gap is narrower than it is in print-reading proficiency.
• Among boys and girls with similar levels of proficiency in print reading, boys tend to have stronger digital navigation skills and therefore score higher in digital reading.
Information and communication technologies revolutionize not only the speed at which information can be transmitted, but also how information is conveyed and received. Technological innovations have a profound effect on the types of skills that are demanded in today’s labour markets and the types of jobs that have the greatest potential for growth.
Most of these jobs now require some familiarity with, if not mastery of, navigating through digital material where readers determine the structure of what they read rather than follow the pre-established order of text as presented in a book.
PISA 2009 evaluated not only how proficient 15-year-olds are in gathering and processing information that they acquire when reading printed texts, but also how proficient they are in reading digital material.
PISA found that some countries have been far more successful than others in helping students to equip themselves to participate fully in the digital age. For example, more than 17% of students in Australia, Korea and New Zealand are top performers in digital reading, while fewer than 3% of students in Austria, Chile and Poland achieve that level of performance.
Korea recently developed a “Smart Education” policy that includes digitalizing all textbooks and assessments by 2015, building or improving school infrastructure so that it accommodates new technologies, and training teachers in the use of these technologies.
Although, on average, student performance in digital reading is closely related to performance in print reading, in some countries, such as Australia and Korea, students score significantly higher in digital reading than in print reading, while in other countries, notably Hungary, Poland and the partner country Colombia, students are better in print reading than in digital reading.
For full research data go to: http://www.pisa.oecd.org/dataoecd/29/22/49442737.pdf