Filipino Students Rank Second to Last in Creative Thinking: PISA Report

Filipino Students Rank Second to Last in Creative Thinking

A recent report from the Programme for International Student Assessment (PISA) revealed that Filipino students ranked second to the last in creative thinking skills among 64 countries and economies. The global assessment, conducted in 2022, tested the creative thinking skills of 15-year-old students. This was the first creative thinking assessment under the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development’s (OECD) PISA.

The Philippines scored an average of 14 points, only slightly better than Albania’s 13 points. The OECD average score is 33 points. Uzbekistan also scored 14 points, while Morocco and the Dominican Republic both scored 15 points.

In contrast, students from Singapore, South Korea, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, Estonia, and Finland performed the best in the creative thinking assessment.

The PISA results highlight a significant performance gap in creative thinking between the highest-performing and lowest-performing countries, with a difference of about 28 points. This means that less than 3 out of every 100 students in the top five performing countries score around or below the average of the bottom five countries, which includes the Philippines.

The OECD explained that the assessment measured students’ abilities to generate, evaluate, and improve ideas across four areas: creative writing, visual expression, scientific problem solving, and social problem solving. Students were asked to think of original solutions for simple tasks and familiar problems, such as coming up with an interesting story idea or thinking of different ways to conduct an awareness-raising campaign in school.

“This assessment measures the capacity of students to generate, evaluate, and improve ideas in four different areas – creative writing, visual expression, scientific problem solving, and social problem solving – providing governments with data to help students and young people reach their full potential in our changing economies and societies,” said OECD Secretary-General Mathias Cormann.

The 2022 PISA results also revealed that the Philippines ranked as the sixth lowest among the 81 countries and economies that participated in the study, with Filipino students continuing to struggle in reading, math, and science.

In December, Vice President and Education Secretary Sara Duterte expressed concern over the Philippines’ poor performance based on the PISA results, emphasizing the need for a collective effort to address this issue.

Duterte resigned as DepEd Secretary, effective July 19, 2024.