Humanities Indicators
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I-1i: International Reading Literacy of 15-Year-Olds (Shares of High and Low Performers), by Jurisdiction, 2015

* In the cases of nations with measurably larger and smaller shares than the United States, the difference is statistically significant at the 5% level. Certain jurisdictions in gray had smaller or larger shares, but whether these differences were attributable not to a sampling error but to actual differences in the levels of performance between those nations and the United States could not be determined with a sufficient level of confidence.
** The OECD describes Level 2 as “a baseline level of proficiency at which students begin to demonstrate the reading literacy competencies that will enable them to participate effectively and productively in life” (see PISA 2015 Results: Excellence and Equity in Education, Volume I, page 164).

Source: U.S. Department of Education, Institute for Education Sciences, National Center for Education Statistics, “Reading Literacy: Proficiency Levels,”, accessed 2/23/2017. Data presented by the American Academy of Arts and Sciences’ Humanities Indicators (

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