TIMSS Contextual Framework
Just as the mathematics and science frameworks describe what should be assessed in those areas, the contextual framework identifies the major characteristics of the educational and social context that will be studied with a view to improving student learning.
Teachers and Their Preparation
Classroom Activities and Characteristics
For a fuller appreciation of what the TIMSS achievement results mean and how they may be used to improve student learning in mathematics and science, it is important to understand the contexts in which students learn. Therefore, TIMSS collects a range of information about the contexts for learning these subjects by administering background questionnaires to the students tested, their teachers of mathematics and science, and their school principals. In addition, curriculum questionnaires in mathematics and science are completed by the National Research Coordinators to provide system-wide information pertaining to curriculum and assessment. The background questionnaires address such areas as resources in the home, students educational aspirations, their attitudes toward mathematics and science, the mathematics and science curriculum taught, teachers preparation and professional development, instructional practices, the use of technology in the classroom, school resources, and school safety.
The background questionnaires are based on the TIMSS 2003 Contextual Framework, which specifies the major characteristics of the educational and social contexts to be studied and identifies the areas to be addressed in the background questionnaires. They were developed by an expert committee composed of international educators and measurement specialists with much input from the National Research Coordinators.
Each one of the TIMSS 2003 background questionnaires
© 2011 International Association for the Evaluation of Educational Achievement (IEA)