PIRLS 2021 International Database Available

This publicly available database contains a rich array of fourth grade achievement and contextual data from the latest PIRLS cycle to support and promote secondary analyses aimed at improving reading literacy education.  

The international database comprises student achievement data and student, home, teacher, school, and national context questionnaire data for the 57 countries and 8 benchmarking systems that participated in PIRLS 2021. Across countries, the database includes records from about 400,000 students, 380,000 parents, 20,000 teachers, 13,000 school principals, as well as the National Research Coordinators of each participating country. 

Commenting on the PIRLS 2021 International Database release, IEA Executive Director, Dr. Dirk Hastedt, said: “The PIRLS 2021 International Database provides a treasure trove of data on reading literacy education. I greatly encourage experts and researchers to dig into the vast database, which is available open access as part of our commitment to supporting evidence-based decision-making in education policy.” 

Available in SPSS, SAS, and R, the International Database is accompanied by the IEA International Database Analyzer, a downloadable application developed by IEA to facilitate the analyses of PIRLS data as well as data from other large-scale assessments. 

Additionally, the PIRLS 2021 User Guide for the International Database is an essential component that describes the database and its supporting documents and also illustrates potential uses of the IDB Analyzer. 

PIRLS 2021 was the fifth cycle of PIRLS since its inception in 2001. Preparations are underway for PIRLS 2026 and enrollment is still open for interested countries.