Academic journal article International Education Studies

Comparative Study: Impact of Family, School, and Students Factors on Students Achievements in Reading in Developed (Estonia) and Developing (Azerbaijan) Countries

Academic journal article International Education Studies

Comparative Study: Impact of Family, School, and Students Factors on Students Achievements in Reading in Developed (Estonia) and Developing (Azerbaijan) Countries

Article excerpt

Abstract

The work is based on Pisa 2009 International Assessment Study. Two counties were selected: a developed country, Estonia and a developing country, Azerbaijan. The following Datum was used for statistical analysis: students average scores in reading (162 schools, 4 600 students from Azerbaijan; 17 schools, 4 923 students from Estonia). The work is based on mixed type research. The main goal is to determine the effect of different independent variables related to school, student, and household, on students' achievements in reading in developed and developing countries. Three research questions were developed:

1) To what extent are student background variables associated with reading scores in each country?

2) To what extent are family-related variables associated with reading scores in each country?

3) To what extent are school-related variables associated with reading scores in each country (variables were analyzed separately: organizational; instructional; and teacher-related)?

As with other research studies this research may have some limitations regarding research model, data analyses, and interpretations. For data analyses ttest and General Linear Model - Univariate statistics were applied.

General Findings:

Estonia: Most of the teachers apply modern teaching methods; students' attitude towards reading activities, teacher, and school are positive. Parental involvement has a positive effect on students' achievements in reading.

Azerbaijan: The majority of the teachers do not apply modern teaching methods; students' attitudes towards reading activities are not deemed positive; students have negative attitudes towards school and teachers.

The research showed that different factors work differently in developed and developing countries cases.

Keywords: reading, general education, education policy, family factors, school factors, student factors

1. Introduction

1.1 Introduce the Problem

A students' achievement in reading is one of the key contributing factors not only in determining his/her success in other subject areas but also in the formation of well-informed citizen (Cawalti, 1991). Trilling (2009) assumes that a person to fulfill their obligations and be successful in 21st century job market requires having a proper education. Distinguished educators Piaget (1959) and Vgotsky (1978) developed arguments that high quality learning processes should incorporate interaction and critical thinking. Dewy (1933) emphasized that humans mostly learn through experience; once a student is engaged in activities that require thinking, memorization, and later on action, that this type of exercise has a high probability to be registered as experience. Two countries (Azerbaijan as developing and Estonia as developed states) were selected for the study. Both of them used to be part of the former Soviet Union. Consequently, their education systems were designed in the same style, the way it has been thought out centrally for the entire country. As the head of general education department head Dr. Irene Käosaar mentions in the interview that the Estonian government, with immense help of European Union, has exerted a lot of effort to move from the Soviet style of education to a more modern one. That effort has paid off enormously; Estonian ninth graders (15 years old) outperformed not only former Soviet republics but also all former Communist bloc (Eastern European) countries in the PISA 2009 international assessment (13th place out of 65 countries and economies). On the other hand, Azerbaijani ninth graders failed to compete with their peers representing 65 different countries and/or economies. For example, they were placed right at the bottom of the table in reading (64th place).Another widespread challenge this type of study addresses is that most of, if not all, international assessments are focused on a small selective group of counties performance (The Great Britain, Japan, South Korea, Hon-Kong, Singapore, Canada, The United States of America, Germany and other European Union countries). …

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