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Kazakhstani results in the ICILS-2018 International Computer and Information Literacy Study

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On November 5th of this year, the IEA published the results of the ICILS International Computer and Information Literacy study. ICILS is the first and one of its kind study that measures digital competence of students around the world. For the first time, 3 373 Kazakhstani students and 2 630 teachers took part in the second study cycle - ICILS-2018. In total, more than 46 000 students and 26 000 teachers from 14 countries[1] participated in ICILS-2018.

The top three leaders included Denmark (553), South Korea (542) and Finland (531). These countries have adopted educational reforms regarding ICT after ICILS-2013.

What is the level of Kazakhstani students’ computer literacy? Given that the study covered all regions of Kazakhstan, the results give a complete picture of the computer literacy of eighth-graders at the whole country level:

  • 33 % of Kazakhstani students have not even reached the minimum level of computer and information literacy (hereinafter - CIL). The average CIL score is 395 points, which is 101 points lower than the international ICILS average (496). 407 score points make the minimum requirement.
  • Among 14 countries, Kazakhstan's results are the lowest. Only 1% of Kazakhstan eighth-graders reached the highest level of CIL (above 661 points).
  • There is a statistically significant difference in the results of Kazakhstan, depending on the type of school, language of test and location (urban/rural). Thus, the problem of the inequality of educational results also affected the computer literacy of Kazakhstani children.

The 2013 cycle of ICILS exposed the myth of the “digital native”; the assumption that just because young people have grown up surrounded by digital technology, they have excellent ICT skills.  The study showed that only 2% of all participants achieved the highest level of computer literacy. Since then, it is obvious that the active use of ICT is not enough for the development of digital competencies, and school education cannot stand aside on this issue.

At 21:00 by Nur - Sultan’s time, the official presentation of the report will be held at the Carnegie Institute of Science in Washington. Online broadcast of the event is available on the IEA official website at the following link

ICILS-2018 National Report including the detailed analysis of Kazakhstani results will be published in the first half of 2020.


[1] In total, 14 education systems from 12 countries and 2 benchmarks participated in the study. In order to keep the international language of results release, in this press release the term «country» is used as an alternative to «education systems».