Trends in International Mathematics and Science Study 1995
Education Survey [es]
The Third International Mathematics and Science Study (TIMSS) is an international study of student achievement. In 1994-95, it was conducted at five grade levels in more than 40 countries (the third, fourth, seventh, and eighth grades, and the final year of secondary school). Students were tested in mathematics and science and extensive information about the teaching and learning of mathematics and science was collected from students, teachers, and school principals. Altogether, TIMSS tested and gathered contextual data for more than half a million students and administered questionnaires to thousands of teachers and school principals. TIMSS also investigated the mathematics and science curricula of the participating countries through an analysis of curriculum guides, textbooks, and other curricular materials.
Kind of Data
Sample survey data
Unit of Analysis
Individuals and institutions
v1.1: Edited, anonymised data for public distribution
In the original version of the TIMSS 1995, the data was made available in country, population (i.e. grade) and survey subtype specific chunks. The original version of this dataset was only available in raw data form from the IEA website.
Version 1.1 is a repackaging of that original data, with the raw datafiles converted and collated for each survey subtype and population, and variables and values labelled.
In 1995, TIMSS measured mathematics and science understanding through performance assessment. In many of the TIMSS countries, subsamples of fourth- and eighth-grade students that participated in the main testing sessions participated in the TIMSS performance assessment. In the performance assessment, students designed experiments, manipulated materials, tested hypotheses, and recorded findings when completing a range of mathematics and science tasks.
Instructional, school, and home background variables are important for understanding international differences in student achievement in mathematics and science. For this reason, TIMSS includes student, teacher, and school questionnaires to collect contextual information about instruction and learning. In 1995, TIMSS gathered an enormous amount of data related to a variety of topics including instructional strategies, classroom activities, school characteristics and resources, attitudes, parental expectations, and many demographic characteristics. In total, the 1995 TIMSS assessment collected information from students, teachers, and school principals on approximately 1,500 contextual variables related to the teaching and learning of mathematics and science.
TIMSS also included an analysis of curricula which sought information about the intended curricula of the countries participating in TIMSS 1995. This was done through an innovative and ambitious analysis of textbooks, curriculum guides, and other curricular materials.
The study covered curricula and text-books, teachers and pupils at selected schools in the country
Producers and sponsors
TIMSS International Study Center
National Center for Education Statistics, U.S. Department of Education
National Science Foundation, U.S.
The basic sample design used by TIMSS is generally referred to as a two-stage stratified cluster sample design. The first stage consisted of a sample of schools, which may be stratified; the second stage consisted of samples of classrooms from each eligible target grade in sampled schools. In some countries, a third stage consisted of sampling students within classrooms. Exclusions could occur at the school level, student level, or both.
Deviations from the Sample Design
Participants could exclude schools from the sampling frame if they were in geographically remote regions, were extremely small, offered curriculum or structure different from the mainstream, or provided instruction only to students in the “within-school” exclusion categories. The general TIMSS rules for defining within-school exclusions can be found in the technical documents.
Weighted and unweighted response rates were computed for each participating country by grade, at the school level, and at the student level. Overall response rates (combined school and student response rates) also were computed.
The students within each country were selected using probability sampling. A consequence of this is that each student had a known probability of selection. The inverse of this selection probability is the sampling weight. In a properly selected and weighted sample, the sum of the weights for the sample approximates the size of the population. In TIMSS, the sum of the sampling weights for a country sample is an estimate of the size of the population of students within the country in the sampled grade(s).
Dates of Data Collection
Data Collection Mode
Data Collection Notes
Each country participating in TIMSS was responsible for collecting its national data and processing the materials in accordance with the international standards. In each country, a national research center and National Research Coordinator (NRC) were appointed to implement these activities.
Data for the study was gathered through assessments of curricular documentation, and with questionnaires, including student, teacher (mathematics and science teachers), and school background questionnaires. Data Almanac files from the survey contain weighted summary statistics for each participating country on each variable in each of the questionnaires.
TIMSS International Study Center. Trends in International Mathematics and Science Study 1995 [dataset]. Version 1.1. Chestnut Hill, MA: TIMSS International Study Center [producer], 1998. Cape Town: DataFirst [distributor], 2012. DOI: https://doi.org/10.25828/sjfq-1g65