Reading is fundamental to all forms of personal learning and intellectual growth. In today's global society, a literate population is essential for a nation's social and economic development. To improve the quality of life for its people, a country needs to maximize the potential of its human, social, and material resources. Citizens that know how to read are crucial to this effort. Concrete information about how well their students can read provides policymakers and researchers in every country with insight into how to improve literacy and reading achievement. To help improve reading teaching and learning around the world, the lEA General Assembly approved reading literacy as an essential component of the lEA's regular cycle of core studies, which also includes mathematics and science (known as TIMSS). With PIRLS 2006, lEA's Progress in International Reading Literacy Study (PIRLS) is in its second round of assessing reading achievement for students in their fourth year of school.
International Association for the Evaluation of Educational Achievement
Boston College (USA). International Study Center
Literacy and reading