The first round of the National School Olympiad 2020-2021

The first round of the National School Olympiad 2020-2021 was held from the 16th to 20th of November.  Pupils from all over the country took part in the Olympiad online, from homes.

The contestants were given an opportunity to log in at www.naec.ge from 09:00 AM to 20:00 PM with their ID, password and complete the assignments. The students were able to see their results on the screen at the end of the test.

The detailed timetable can be found here.

The highest score in each subject can be seen here.

Please click for testing instruction (in Georgian).

One should get at least 60% of the maximum score and be among the top 1000 students in the subject ranking list in order to make it to the second round. The ranking list of each round will be published by the National Assessment and Examinations Center on the website, in a special program, which will be accessible to the school administration.

If a participant was the winner of the Olympiad of the relevant subject of the previous year and for good reason failed to register or was not present in the first round of the Olympiad, he / she was given a right to participate in the next round of the Olympiad.

The Olympiad was held according to a specific grade in the following subjects:

  • Mathematics;
  • Georgian language and literature;
  • Georgian language and literature for students from non-Georgian (ethnic minority) schools;
  • History;
  • Geography;
  • Physics;
  • Chemistry;
  • Biology;
  • Foreign languages: English, German, French, Russian.

In case of any violation or other concern the Olympiad participant is entitled to apply to the local educational resource center by 17:00PM of the second day after the end of the relevant testing.

The National Training Olympiad is held in three rounds and each round is based on the National Curriculum.

More than 30,700 students registered in the National Teaching Olympiad this year. The Olympiad aims to stimulate the learning process and increase the motivation of students. Also, to identify candidates for the teams that will participate in the International Olympiads on behalf of Georgia.

The results of the first round can be found here.

Project “Assessment for Development” Pilot Testing

The National Assessment and Examinations Center conducted a pilot testing from the 26th to 27th of November to assess 7th graders’ knowledge and skills in Mathematics and Georgian Language and Literature.

More than 1000 students from different schools in Georgia took part in the pilot testing. The testing was done online. Students were given an opportunity to complete test assignments electronically, from home.

The test results will be used by the Center to improve an online platform and testing format of the project “Assessment for Development”. Diagnostic evaluation will also help schools plan the upcoming academic year accordingly.

For the purposes of the project as well as due to the pandemic, only seventh-graders were involved in the pilot testing at this stage – the next try out will be planned after the results are analyzed.

In the framework of the same project, in the beginning of 2020, approbation of individual assignments was conducted in about 60 public schools. The National Assessment and Examinations Center started working on the project “Assessment for Development” in 2019.

It aims to assess the achievement level of fourth and sixth grade students with the help of an electronic platform at the end of the school year in Georgian language and literature (literacy) and mathematics (quantitative literacy).

The results will help students and parents monitor the progress made during the learning process and get information about the strengths and weaknesses of the students. This project will enable schools to observe the teaching and learning trends both at individual class level and at the school level in general.

The final results will not affect the student’s annual assessment.

Publication in the Georgian Language

An Online Open Door Day was Held for the 12th Graders from Kutaisi

The National Assessment and Examinations Center has been hosting Open Door Days online during the pandemic.  This time some university entrants from Kutaisi were invited to discuss upcoming Unified National Examinations.

The event turned out to be highly engaging for the participants. Topics such as preparation for the exams, registration procedures as well as various issues related to specific subject groups were covered during the meeting.

Questions about the Unified National Examinations 2021 were answered by the director of the Center and the representatives of the subject groups.

In order to better inform the entrants, the National Assessment and Examinations Center started conducting Open Door Days in November. School-leavers from Racha-Lechkhumi and Kvemo Svaneti have already been hosted online.

School-leavers from other regions of Georgia will also have an opportunity to attend online meetings. Electronic Open Door Days are conducted via the Microsoft Teams program. Students are distributed according to their location. Regional Resource Centers as well as school administration spread information about the timetable.

Trends in International Mathematics and Science Study (TIMSS) 2019

The National Assessment and Examinations Center offers the results of Georgia within the framework of an international survey on Trends in International Mathematics and Science Study (TIMSS) 2019.

Conducted every four years since 1995, TIMSS has been a valuable tool for monitoring international trends in mathematics and science achievement at the fourth and eighth grades. Georgia was first involved in 2007 and since then has participated in TIMSS 2011, 2015 and 2019. Georgia was represented by both 4th and 8th grades. The study was administered by the National Assessment and Examinations Center.

Trends in International Mathematics and Science Study (TIMSS) enables participating countries assess their education system, existing teaching practices, and identify obstacles to teaching mathematics and science. The study evaluates the achievement dynamics of the same educational level student compared to previous cycles, and also shows whether student achievement has changed over the years at different stages of learning process in the country (primary and lower secondary).

64 countries participated in TIMSS 2019. 58 countries and 6 regions participated in fourth grade assessment, and 39 countries and 7 regions participated in eighth grade assessment.

From 2019, TIMSS switched to electronic assessment (e-TIMSS). Before stepping towards e-Assessment Georgia conducted a transitional Bridge research. The research fieldwork was conducted from April 24 to May 29, 2019. 226 schools from Tbilisi and different regions of the country participated in the TIMSS 2019 cycle throughout Georgia. A total of 154 fourth (6,002 students) and 145 eighth graders (5,698 students) participated.

Specially designed questionnaires were also completed by school principals, teachers and parents / guardians of fourth graders.

The report can be found here.

The presentation can be seen here.

In addition, for the first time, interested parties will have an opportunity to visit the TIMSS website and receive information about the main data of the 2019 survey in Georgian.

Trends in International Mathematics and Science Study (TIMSS) 2019 Results, Georgia

On 8th of December the National Assessment and Examinations Center published the results of Georgia within the framework of an international survey on Trends in International Mathematics and Science Study (TIMSS) 2019.

Today, an international presentation of the TIMSS 2019 report was held by the International Association for the Evaluation of Educational Achievement (IEA) at the UNESCO headquarters in Paris. The event, which was attended by education professionals and accredited journalists from all over the world, covered the main findings and challenges of the research. Sophio Gorgodze, the Director of the National Assessment and Examinations Center also participated in the following discussion.

Conducted every four years since 1995, TIMSS has been a valuable tool for monitoring international trends in mathematics and science achievement at the fourth and eighth grades. Georgia was first involved in 2007 and since then has participated in TIMSS 2011, 2015 and 2019. Georgia was represented by both 4th and 8th grades. The study was administered by the National Assessment and Examinations Center.

Trends in International Mathematics and Science Study (TIMSS) enables participating countries assess their education system, existing teaching practices, and identify obstacles to teaching mathematics and science. The study evaluates the achievement dynamics of the same educational level student compared to previous cycles, and also shows whether student achievement has changed over the years at different stages of learning process in the country (primary and lower secondary).

64 countries participated in TIMSS 2019. 58 countries and 6 regions participated in fourth grade assessment, and 39 countries and 7 regions participated in eighth grade assessment.

From 2019, TIMSS switched to electronic assessment (e-TIMSS). Before stepping towards e-Assessment Georgia conducted a transitional Bridge research. The research fieldwork was conducted from April 24 to May 29, 2019. 226 schools from Tbilisi and different regions of the country participated in the TIMSS 2019 cycle throughout Georgia. A total of 154 fourth (6,002 students) and 145 eighth graders (5,698 students) participated.

Specially designed questionnaires were also completed by school principals, teachers and parents / guardians of fourth graders.

The international average score is 500.

The results of Georgia in 2019:

Mathematics (4th grade) – 482 points;

Mathematics (8th grade) – 461;

Natural Sciences (4th grade) – 454;

Natural Sciences (8th grade) – 447.

The results of the research revealed that in the 2019, Georgian fourth-graders significantly improved their achievements in mathematics. Georgia was also named among the five countries that have increased the most compared to 2015.

“These results of the study show the progress as well as the current challenges. Advancement is really obvious. It is clear that the results of the fourth graders have improved in mathematics, and in one direction (direction-numbers) for the first time since 2007 exceeded the international average. Achievements in eighth grade mathematics and science at both levels remain a challenge, with only minor improvements that are not statistically significant; However, if we look at the data in rural and urban contexts, it appears that rural fourth-graders have significantly improved their results in natural science. Also, according to the available data, the differences in the achievement between rural and urban schools are decreasing and almost eliminated. ”

Sophia Gorgodze,  the Director of the National Assessment and Examinations Center.

The initial report and presentation of Georgia can be found here.

In addition, for the first time, interested parties will have an opportunity to visit the TIMSS website and receive information about the main data of the 2019 survey in Georgian.

Teachers and School Leaders as Valued Professionals (TALIS) 2018 Report, Georgia

The OECD Teaching and Learning International Survey (TALIS) is the largest international survey asking teachers and school leaders about their working conditions and learning environments. It provides a barometer of the profession every five years.

Georgia has been involved in TALIS since 2013. In 2018 Georgia’s participation was made possible through the financial support of Second Compact of Millennium Challenge Corporation (MCC) with Georgia, administered by Millennium Challenge Account – Georgia (MCA-Georgia).

Across all survey components, approximatively 260 000 teachers responded to the survey, representing more than 8 million teachers in 48 participating countries and economies. In Georgia, 3 101 lower secondary teachers and 177 principals completed the TALIS questionnaires.

Based on the voice of teachers and school leaders, TALIS 2018 report offers a series of policy recommendations to help strengthen the professionalisation of teaching careers. The report aims to provide an in-depth analysis of teachers’ and school leaders’ perceptions of the value of their profession, their work-related well-being and stress, and their satisfaction with their working conditions. It also offers a description of teachers’ and school leaders’ contractual arrangements, opportunities to engage in professional tasks such as collaborative teamwork, autonomous decision making, and leadership practices.

Nine main themes were selected for inclusion in the TALIS 2018 survey: teachers’ instructional practices; school leadership; teachers’ professional practices; teacher education and initial preparation; teacher feedback and development; school climate; job satisfaction; teacher human resource issues and stakeholder relations; and teacher self-efficacy. Two cross-cutting themes were added to this list: innovation; and equity and diversity.

A detailed report of TALIS 2018 country-by-country can be found here.

Programme for International Student Assessment (PISA) 2018 Report, Georgia

The Programme for International Student Assessment (PISA) is a triennial survey of 15-year-old students that assesses their level of key knowledge and skills essential for full participation in society. The assessment focuses on proficiency in reading, mathematics, science and an innovative domain (in 2018, the innovative domain was global competence), and on students’ wellbeing.

Results from PISA indicate the quality and equity of learning outcomes attained around the world, and allow educators and policy makers to learn from the policies and practices applied in other countries.

Georgia has been involved in PISA since 2009. In 2018 (as in 2015), Georgia’s participation was made possible through the financial support of Second Compact of Millennium Challenge Corporation (MCC) with Georgia, administered by Millennium Challenge Account – Georgia (MCA-Georgia).

600 000 students completed the assessment in 2018, representing about 32 million 15-yearolds in the schools of the 79 participating countries and economies. In Georgia, 5 572 students, in 326 schools, completed the assessment, representing 38 489 15-year-old students (83% of the total population of 15-year-olds).

Computer-based tests were used in Georgian schools, with assessments lasting a total of two hours. In reading, a multi‑stage adaptive approach was applied in computer -based tests whereby students were assigned a block of test items based on their performance in preceding blocks.

Students also answered a background questionnaire, which took about 35 minutes to complete. The questionnaire sought information about the students themselves, their attitudes, dispositions and beliefs, their homes, and their school and learning experiences. School principals completed a questionnaire that covered school management and organisation, and the learning environment.

A detailed report of PISA 2018 country-by-country can be found here.

What Made It Possible for Georgia? — Examinations 2020 During the COVID-19 Pandemic

While many countries made a major decision to postpone or cancel high stakes examinations during the COVID-19 pandemic, Georgia decided to take the precautionary measures and run the exams.  

The examination process in Georgia continued for nearly the entire month. During this period the Unified National Examinations, the Students’ Grant Competition, the Master’s Graduate Entry Examinations, and the Teacher Certification Examinations were held. The number of examination centers had been increased to follow the safety recommendations and place no more than 10 applicants in an examination room. This period has been a great challenge for the National Assessment and Examinations Center first, because of the responsibility to ensure the safety of approximately 70 000 applicants overall, and second, because of the responsibility to ensure the social health wouldn’t worsen.

The commission comprised of corresponding state authorities and supervised by the Prime Minister adopted the recommendations To prevent the spread of COVID-19, maximize the health protection of examinees, and simultaneously ensure high-quality management of an examination process.

Although the epidemic situation had a great impact on the examination process, the examination process didn’t impact the epidemic situation. There has been a case when an applicant who took the Unified National Examination on July 7 tested positive for the coronavirus. All preventive measures had been taken as fast as possible, the applicant was placed in quarantine and took the rest of the exams in line with the rules there. All individuals who took the exam with the applicant or had contact with her had been identified and taken under the supervision of doctors. NAEC strongly believes that the spread of disease was avoided because the safety recommendations had been followed urgently and strictly during the whole examination process as well as in this particular case.

Amiran Gamkrelidze, the general director of the National Center for Disease Control and Public Health summed the process up. According to him, even though national exams represented large social gatherings, the epidemic situation in a country hasn’t worsened.

“I’d like to inform you that our country successfully passed this exam. The spread of infection hasn’t occurred” — said Gamkrelidze.

The fact that the month-long examination process with large social gatherings ended without major complication and the pandemic outbreak shows that the issued safety recommendations were adequate and absolutely necessary to deliver the result Georgia now has. It also shows that everyone responsible for the administration of the exams worked hard, were devoted, and strictly followed the safety recommendations.

Safety Protocol for Conducting Examinations During COVID-19

Recommendations for the National Assessment and Examinations Center to Safely Organize the Examinations 2020 During the New Coronavirus Infection (COVID-19)

To prevent the spread of COVID-19, maximize the health protection of examinees and simultaneously ensure high-quality management of an examination process, the commission comprised of corresponding state authorities and supervised by the Prime Minister has been created.  As a result of a coordinated work of the commission members, the rules concerning the safe administration of the Unified National Examinations, the Master’s Graduate Entry Examinations, the Teacher Certification Examinations, and the Students’ Grant Competition have been adopted.

According to the recommendations of the National Center for Disease Control and Public Health (NCDC), examinees and observers are allowed to occupy only 50% of the area in each examination sector. The examination desks’ front sides should be equipped with transparent barriers/shields; the examination desks should be placed at least 2 meters apart from each other and the distance between the examination desks in each line should be at least 1 meter.

Examination desk shields, thermal screening, proper distancing, and strict observance of every recommendation concerning the prevention of the spread of  COVID-19 made it possible to allow examinees to write the exam without wearing a face mask once they take their seats at their respective examination desks.

In accordance with the recommendations of the Ministry of Internally Displaced Persons from the Occupied Territories, Labour, Health and Social Affairs of Georgia and the European Center for Disease Prevention and Control (ECDC), air conditioners have been allowed alongside the natural ventilation (open window). If the room temperature reaches or exceeds 30 Celsius, air conditioning can be turned on. However, in such cases, everyone in the examination room must wear a face mask.

When air conditioning is allowed, the rules listed below must be followed:

  1. Physical distancing;
  2. The Mandatory rule regarding hand hygiene;
  3. Respiratory hygiene  i.e. cough etiquette;
  4. Mandatory rule to wear a face mask;
  5. The airflow coming out of the conditioners should not be directed at the people in the examination room; 
  6. The windows of the examination room must be open at all times. It is mandatory  no matter the air conditioners are turned on or off because the risk of spreading the virus is high in the closed space;
  7. The re-circulation of the air is prohibited.

Under instructions issued by the Ministry of Internally Displaced Persons from the Occupied Territories, Labour, Health and Social Affairs of Georgia and by the National Center for Disease Control and Public Health (NCDC), face masks must be worn by the examinees in the examination center during the situations specified below (exceptions are the examinees whose body temperature is 37 °C or higher and/or the examinees with any other respiratory symptoms. These examinees must wear face masks at all times during their presence at the examination center):

  1. Before taking their seats at the examination desks;
  2. While leaving the examination sector;
  3. While communicating with others;
  4. While the air conditioner is turned on.

The examination personnel must wear face masks at all times. The personnel responsible for thermal screening must also wear transparent face shields and observe strict hygiene rules.

All medical facilities in the examination centers are equipped with first aid kits. The emergency vehicles, ambulance, and police patrol cars are mobilized on the premises.

For a more detailed review of the recommendations noted above, you can visit the official website of the Ministry of Internally Displaced Persons from the Occupied Territories, Labour, Health and Social Affairs of Georgia.

Examinations 2020: Georgian Experience

The examination process in 2020 has become more challenging than ever before due to the pandemic. To ensure the safety of the examinees, implement public health measures and avoid COVID-19 transmission, recommendations related to the new coronavirus had been adopted. The recommendations were adopted by the Ministry of Internally Displaced Persons from the Occupied Territories, Labour, Health and Social Affairs of Georgia, the National Center for Disease Control and Public Health (NCDC) and the Ministry of Education, Science, Culture and Sport of Georgia. These recommendations were strictly followed by the National Assessment and Examinations Center.

The Unified National Examinations

The Unified National Examinations 2020 started on July 6th and ended on July 25th. It was administered in 24 examination centers established all over Georgia: Tbilisi, Batumi, Poti, Zugdidi, Ozurgeti, Kutaisi, Akhaltsikhe, Gori, Rustavi, Telavi, and Khulo. The number of applicants for the United National Examinations was more than 39 300 and approximately 94% of the applicants took the Unified National Examinations.

The results have already been published and the appeal process has also been finished. After the publication of the appeal results, the entrants were able to make changes in the list of programs of their choice depending on the university ratings and according to their exam scores.

The enrollments and information about the government grants were announced on August 31. 29 614 entrants will continue studying at higher education institutions and almost 6 550 of them will receive the government grant. More than 1 000 applicants will receive 100% funding, almost 1 500 applicants will receive 70% funding, and more than 4 000 applicants will receive 50% funding. The entrants should register in the higher education institutions to continue studying.

The Students’ Grant Competition

The number of applicants registered for the Student Grant Competition was more than 3 600 and their 78% participated in the Student Grant Competition. The competition was held on July 25th. The results were announced in the first half of August.

If the student doesn’t improve their grant they still maintain their current funding and have a right to register for the following years’ competition.

The Master’s Graduate Entry Examinations

The Master’s Graduate Entry Examinations started on August 1st and finished on August 4th. More than 12,600 applicants were registered and 87% of the applicants took the exam.

After passing the Master’s Graduate Entry Examinations, applicants take a specialty exam directly in their respective higher education institutions.

Unlike previous years, this year entrants for the Master’s Graduate Entry Examinations took only one type of test, this completely eliminates the problems associated with the choice of educational programs and mobility.

The results have already been announced and the appeal process continues from august 27 to September 2.

The Teacher Certification Examinations

The Teacher certification examinations for the beginning teachers started on July 22nd and finished on July 30. Up to 12 000 applicants were registered for the subject examinations this year and 88% participated in the exam. The results have already been announced and the appeal process has been finished as well.

The examination centers were located in the following cities: Batumi, Poti, Zugdidi, Ozurgeti, Kutaisi, Akhaltsikhe, Gori, Tbilisi, Rustavi, and Telavi.

According to the Ministry of Education, Science, Culture and Sport of Georgia, the teacher certification examinations for the practicing teachers has been postponed and will be conducted in autumn by the National Assessment and Examinations Center.

The pandemic situation in the country hasn’t worsened due to the examinations 2020.