Administration in Quebec of an international evaluation

in mathematics and in science



Third International Mathematics and Science Study (TIMSS) was realized in 1995 by the International Association for the Evaluation (IEA). This study aimed at comparing the teaching and the learning of the Mathematics and the Science with the primary and secondary education to inform the educators, at the world level, on the exemplary practices and on the results obtained by the students. And so in the spring of 1995, the students of Grades 3 and 4 of the primary level, of Grades 7 and 8 of the high school as well as the students in their last year of the secondary high school (in Quebec, students of the CEGEP) answered a questionnaire concerning several aspects of the teaching of the mathematics and the sciences. The students answered multiple-choice questions, by short sentences and resolved problems. Furthermore, we asked students' sample to experience or to resolve problems by using of the scientific material. We questioned the students about their interests as well to the school and outside the school. The principals and the teachers supplied information as for the curricula, for the resources and for the educational methods used in their classes and schools.


The Canadian persons in charge of TIMSS asked to researchers in education of the University Laval (Quebec) to examine the possibility of realizing or of coordinating the realization of certain operations that must be executed in Quebec within the framework of this project. The persons in charge at the University Laval suggested associating the Educan for the realization of certain operations; Micro Centre Pythagore was associated to the realization of several technical works. And so a committee of coordination was set up; the following tasks were entrusted to this committee:

  • Assure the necessary links with TIMSS-Canada and possibly with French-speaking co-workers of TIMSS-Canada in Ontario and in New Brunswick.


  • Verify the instrumentation proposed for the French speakers of Quebec.


  • Plan mechanisms planned to contact the school being part of the Quebec sample.


  • Plan and coordinate the picking of the data of TIMSS-Canada in Quebec.


  • Plan and coordinate the realization of the operations of quality control of the operations, among others by the organization of visits in the selected schools.


Several tasks were realized by Micro Centre Pythagore within the framework of the administration of this survey in Quebec. We present them briefly.

  • First, we proceeded to the revision of the material used within the framework of this activity of international evaluation, in particular the French version of the instrumentation.


  • There had to have observation of the administration in a sample of schools chosen for this activity. The staff concerned participated in Canadian sessions of training to standardize the progress of this control procedure of the quality.


  • There were contacts with schools sampled for three target populations. There was exchanges of correspondence to establish students' lists that must be evaluated. Finally, the material necessary for the administration was distributed and collected.


  • There was application of the control procedure of the quality of the administration defined in the international plan. And so visits were led in 40 schools of the primary and secondary education and twelve colleges. The observers had to respect the defined procedure and draft a report of visit respecting the questionnaire supplied by the Canadian persons in charge of the survey.


  • There was check of the material returned by schools evaluated before the shipping at the Canadian Centre of data processing.


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