Programme for the International Assessment of Adult Competencies, PIAAC: Basic skills of Finnish adults one of the best in the OECD countries
The average literacy skills of Finnish
adults are excellent in relative terms internationally. Their average literacy
score was 288 points, which is well over the average score for the OECD
countries (273 points). The only country that fared better was Japan. Two
thirds of the adult population in Finland are either good or excellent readers.
On the other hand, 11% of all 16 to 65-year-olds have very poor skills in
The average score in numeracy of Finnish adults is among the best in the survey. Finland’s average score (282 points) is clearly over the average score for the OECD countries (269 points). Japan was the only country that exceeded Finland in proficiency in numeracy. Differences within the Finnish population in numeracy skills are at the average international level. Over a half of all adult Finns (57%) have either good or excellent skills in numeracy, but at the same time, 13% of the adult population experiences great difficulties with basic mathematics.
Altogether 41% of all Finns have either
good or excellent ability to solve problems in technology-rich environments.
This is well over the OECD average (34%). The only country to exceed Finland in
this area is Sweden.
Some of the participants in the survey did
not want to or were not able to use the computer to complete the tasks. These respondents
therefore didn’t participate in the section on the ability to solve problems in
technology-rich environments. They account for an average of 24% in the OECD
countries and about 19% in Finland. Around 30% of the Finnish adult population
aged 16-65, in other words about a million adults, have insufficient skills in
solving problems in technology-rich environments, when adding up those who did
poorly in the section on the ability of solve problems in technology-rich
environments and those who did not do the tasks by computer at all.
Further information is available from:
Antero Malin, Professor, Finnish Institute for Educational Research, University of Jyväskylä, tel. +358 (0)50 411 6551
Petri Haltia, Counsellor of Education, Ministry of Education and
tel. +358 (0)9 1607 7457
Varpu Weijola, Chief Counsellor, Ministry of Employment and the Economy,
tel. +358 (0)10 60 48029
Reijo Laukkanen, Counsellor of Education, Finnish National Board of
tel. +358 (0)40 348 7943
Marko Ylitalo, Researcher, Statistics Finland, tel. +358 (0)9 1734 3560 (data collection)