Anxiety in PISA Survey 2015. Student Questionnaire and Possible Semantic Interferences in Bilingual Communities.

 

Franz Hilpold

Head Teacher High School of Economics

franz.hilpold@gmail.com

 

Elita Maule

Conservatory of Music of  Bolzano - Bozen, Italy

Elita.Maule@cons.bz.it

 

Markus Hilpold

Conservatory of Music of  Bolzano- Bozen, Italy

99hilmar@rgtfo-me.it

 

Summary / Abstract

 

PISA research investigated the mathematical anxiety of fifteen-year-old students in 2003 and 2012.

Subsequent studies have confirmed the negative correlation between anxiety and mathematical performance but have also denounced how many issues remain unresolved about the reasons that lead students to feel and declare different levels of anxiety. One of these issues interests the language and the translation, that is, the different meanings attributed to the questions by the students answering the questionnaire. In 2015 PISA investigated the theme of school anxiety in general and not only in mathematics. By confirming the previous data, it appeared noticeable that the most anxious students are those of Spanish, Italian and Portuguese mother language.

The current research takes into account the incidence of the linguistic variable on the anxiety index by assuming as a sample a bilingual (Italian and German) homogeneous Italian region  in order to eliminate other possible variables such as socio-economic back-ground, school curricula differences teaching methodology, teacher training. The incidence of the 5 items forming the index in the selected sample was calculated by linear multiple regression, while the language influence on  the items was measured with a logistic regression. The results show that the language, controlling other variables of incidence, affects differently but always significant on the five items, namely, the  German speakers tend to deny high levels of anxiety while Italian, Spanish and Portuguese speakers confirm it.

 

 

1. Introduction

     The Programme for International Student Assessment (PISA) is an international assessment study conducted by the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) since 2000 and investigates the level of competence acquired by 15-year-olds attending all types of school in the subjects: reading, mathematics and sciences. Every three years one of these disciplines is chosen as the main area of research, while the others, in turn, are taken as secondary dominions. In 2003 and in 2012 PISA investigated the student�s self-beliefs about their own mathematics skills. Among them anxiety, but only related to mathematics, was included as �thoughts and feelings about the self in relation to mathematics, such as feelings of helplessness and stress when dealing with mathematics� (OECD, 2012). Since then, the results of the PISA study on the subject have been deepened by numerous studies which have confirmed that while Self-efficacy is positively associated with student�s math performances (Lee & Stankov, 2013), anxiety is negatively associated with it (Kalaycıoğlu, 2015); while the socioeconomic status has a minor but significant effect only at school level, it doesn�t influence the individual math anxiety (Radi�ić et.al, 2014). When poor early math skills contribute to the development of math anxiety, other factors seem to increase it, such as quantity and quality of parent and teacher math input, social pressure and stereotypes (Foley et al., 2017). Further research took also into consideration the relationship between socioeconomic variables, school and classroom climate, motivation and cognitive aspects of learning math and math anxiety at both school and student levels proving that �achievement and interest in mathematics, high mathematics self-concept, and school and classroom atmosphere are associated with a lower level of math anxiety [�]. Nevertheless, it is surprising that the self-efficacy in solving everyday math problems, the elaboration learning strategies, and the intrinsic interest in mathematics do not contribute to explaining of the math anxiety variance� (Radi�ić et.al, 2015, p.15).

Though PISA and other studies have shown that math anxiety is a cross-national problem and that it may depend on several variables, various questions remain unanswered. Little is known about the most effective ways to address these issues in different cultural and school contexts and how teachers, parents and teaching methods transmit math anxiety to children. Moreover, �in cross-country comparisons, there are many confounding variables that contribute to score differences, such as national curricula, characteristics of the language, translation mistakes and cultural-specific experiences. To compare the achievement levels of students who take different language versions of an assessment, the raw scores from each assessment should be transformed into a common scale� (Kalaycıoğlu, 2015).

On the 18th of April 2017 OECD published the result of further investigations that were carried out on PISA 2015, which discussed mainly the wellbeing of students. (OECD, 2017a). One of the most interesting variables is the index of schoolwork-related anxiety.

The index of schoolwork-related anxiety (ANXTEST) was constructed using student responses to question (ST118) over the extent they strongly agreed, agreed, disagreed or strongly disagreed with the following statements when asked to think about him or herself:

-        To what extent do you disagree or agree about yourself? I often worry that it will be difficult for me taking a test.

-       To what extent do you disagree or agree about yourself? I worry that I will get poor <grades> at school.

-       To what extent do you disagree or agree about yourself? Even if I am well-prepared for a test I feel very anxious.

-        I get very tense when I study for a test.

-      I get nervous when I don�t know how to solve a task at school.

The index was calibrated in such a way, that the OECD obtained a median of 0 and a standard deviation of 1 as result (OECD, 2017b). If the index of a country or a region had a positive value, then the anxiety of the students was greater than the OECD-average. Whereas if the index was negative, it meant that the students were worrying less than on the OECD-average. The Swiss, for instance, have a high negative value of -0.44 and are thus quite untroubled. The Italian teenagers instead, produce a high positive value of +0.45 and therefore show stress towards exams more distinctively, in comparison.

When single countries such as in Europe are being compared, it can be noted, that especially in German speaking countries the index consists of moderately strong or very strong negative values, while countries with languages, that can be retraced to a Latin origin, have a positive Index value. For comparison:

 

<= -0,30

 

-0,20 - -0,29

 

-0,10 - -0,19

 

-0,09 - +0,09

 

0,10 - 0,19

 

0,20 -0,29

 

0,30 � 0,44

 

 >= 0,45

 

Image 1: Europe-Map with coloured index ANXTEST

 

This sparks the suspicion, that even the linguistic phrasing of the multiple-choice answer set might have had an influence on the answers of pupils on the index items. The interaction with psychological pressure that emerges from the results and that is different in each country would therefore be relativised. It could be that the semantic content of the wording in German, for instance, is being weighted differently than in Italian or in Spanish for example.  Here are first of all the answer sets that were made available in the surveys there to:

 

Table 1: Statements in the five questions composing the index of anxiety

English

German

Italian

French

Spanish

I often worry that it will be difficult for me taking a test;

Ich mache mir oft Sorgen, dass ein Test/eine Schularbeit f�r mich schwierig wird;

Mi preoccupo spesso che avr� difficolt� a fare un test

J�ai souvent peur d�avoir des difficult�s � r�ussir un contr�le.

 

 

Con frequencia me preocupa que el examen me resulte dificil

I worry that I will get poor <grades> at school;

Ich mache mir Sorgen, dass ich in der Schule schlechte Noten bekomme.

Mi preoccupa prendere brutti voti a scuola

J�ai peur d�avoir de mauvaises notes � l��cole.

 

Me preocupa sacar malas notas en clase

Even if I am well prepared for a test I feel very anxious;

Auch wenn ich f�r einen Test/eine Schularbeit gut vorbereitet bin, habe ich gro�e Angst davor.

Anche se sono preparato/a, quando devo fare un test sono molto in ansia

M�me si je me suis bien pr�par�(e) pour un contr�le, je me sens

tr�s angoiss�(e).

 

Incluso cuando estoy bien preparado para un examen me encuentro muy nervioso

I get very tense when I study;

 Ich werde ganz verkrampft, wenn ich f�r einen Test/eine Schularbeit lerne.

 

Divento molto teso/a quando mi preparo per un test

Je suis tr�s tendu(e) quand j��tudie pour un contr�le.

 

Me pongo muy tenso cuando estudio para un examen

I get nervous when I don�t know how to solve a task at school.

Ich werde nerv�s, wenn ich in der Schule eine Aufgabe nicht l�sen kann

 

Divento nervoso/a quando non so come fare un compito a scuola

Je deviens nerveux/nerveuse quand je ne sais pas comment r�soudre un �

 

Me pongo nervioso cuando no s� resolver un ejercicio en clase

 

In order to better determine the structure of data and to find out, if the construct ANXTEST represents a real existing condition of a person, regarding a task that has to be solved, we first of all inspected what influence the single variables (=questions) have on the index. PISA created the index out of these 5 items, and each item contributes to the creation of the index, due to its properties of distribution in the entire OECD sample. We can expect, that the distribution properties of the agreement/ strong agreement, together with the disagreement/strong disagreement vary in each country, and it is not only the frequency of agreement that matters but also its degree (agree/strongly agree).

One must take into consideration that culturally- and socially conditioned response sets will appear. For example they might have a tendency/aversion towards the middle, a tendency towards acquiescence etc. which might worsen the validity of the construct. PISA took this into consideration when they formed the index, and therefore summarised the agree/strongly agree answer expressiveness. As a result dummy-variables were built. We rely on the same process in our research. Thus, we especially avoid response sets, which compromise the result of the item answers regarding the person property that has to be measured i.e which makes it unreliable. Furthermore we simplify the investigation and can therefore expect a more accessible recognition of structure.

An interesting field of research are areas, in which questionnaires have been filled out under the same or similar conditions but in different languages. Such areas would be Switzerland (German, French, and Italian), Luxembourg (German, French, and English), Friuli-Venezia Giulia in Italy (Italian and Slovenian) and South Tyrol (German and Italian).

The analysis of the case of South Tyrol is interesting, because a census of all 82 schools has been carried out. The students have been chosen based on PISA-criteria in the schools themselves. We are therefore looking at a representative sample that fulfils all criteria, which are also required from each OECD-country in order to be inspected as an independent entity. In South Tyrolean schools, students of German schools answer the questionnaire in German, students of Italian schools fill out the questionnaire in Italian, and in Ladin valleys students are allowed to pick either language to fill out the questionnaire. The sample is very suitable for this kind of analysis also because there were few missing values and because the questionnaires were filled out responsibly. When the answer pattern in different languages are being explored, it is useful that the schools and the school system work under the same conditions, that the teacher training follows the same jurisdiction and that the syllabi are more or less the same.

We focused our research especially on South Tyrol, because the statistical statements can be secured quite well there.

 

2. The impact of language on the answers to index ANXIETY questions

 

Table 2: Comparison of the index ANXIETY between some countries and linguistic groups (OECD, 2017)

Country/linguistic group

Value of Anxiety-Index

SouthTyrol german speaking schools

-0,386

SouthTyrol italian speaking schools

+0,283

SouthTyrol ladin speaking schools

-0,250

South Tyrol entirely

-0,23

Italy

0,45

Austria

-0,10

Germany

-0,33

Switzerland

-0,44

Trentino (Italy)

0,21

Campany (Italy)

0,53

Lombardy (Italy)

0,37

OECD average

0,01

 

It can be noted, that South Tyrol is one of the few areas in Italy that has a distinct negative value in the ANXTEST index. This is due to the fact, that the German population, which has a negative result is greater than the Italian population which has a positive result, as a result the negative result overpowers the positive one. This will be inspected properly in the following table:

 

Image 2: Percentage of agreers in the five index questions between the test language groups in South Tyrol (OECD, 2017a)

 

Using the PISA � standard errors (OECD, 2003) we note, that for each item ST118Q01 to ST118Q05 the difference between the distribution of agreers/disagreers in both language groups german and italian results significant at the level 0,05.

For each question, moreover, the german and the italian frequency of agreers have a different position regarding the OECD related frequency of the agreers. The german speaking students stand always on the left side of the OECD average, whereas the italians are always on the right side.

The first research question, according to that, reads as follows: Do the single items have the same (H0) or do they have a different impact (H1) on the index? Out of practical reasons we carried out the investigations without any limitation from generality on some countries, which are relevant for further research. It seemed to us that the most direct- and most comprehensible method was the one of the multiple regression (Bortz & Schuster, 2010) of the single questions ST11801 to ST118Q05 carried out to form the ANXTEST index.

 

Image 3: Distribution of Test Anxiety in South Tyrol by questionnaire language

 

2.1 Multiple regression of the ST118 questions on the variable ANXTEST � weighted data South Tyrol

Given circumstances: Census on every school which contains 15-year-olds, sample within the schools following the PISA-rules. Sample size: 2243 persons, weighted with (Final trimmed nonresponse adjusted student weight)=4985.

The dependant variable is interval-scaled and the independent variables are coded as dummy-variables (0=strongly disagree/disagree, 1=agree/strongly agree).

The interrelation between the single predictors and the criterion is approximately linear (dummy-variables)

The variables Q05, Q01, Q04, Q03 and Q02 are inserted into the model (method:inclusion) respectively.

 

Table 3: Model Summary after insert the questions Q01 to Q05

Model Summaryc

Model

R

R Square

Adjusted R Square

Std. Error of the Estimate

Durbin-Watson

1

,903a

,816

,816

,4544652

.b

a. Predictors: (Constant), New dummy 118Q05:I get nervous when I don't know how to solve a task at school., New dummy 118Q01:To what extent do you disagree or agree about yourself? I often worry that it will be difficult for me taking a test., New dummy 118Q04:I get very tense when I study for a test., New dummy 118Q03:To what extent do you disagree or agree about yourself? Even if I am well-prepared for a test I feel very anxious., New dummy 118Q02:To what extent do you disagree or agree about yourself? I worry that I will get poor <grades> at school.

b. Not computed because fractional case weights have been found for the variable specified on the WEIGHT command. For unweighted  data the Durbin-Watson statistic results 1,981.

c. Dependent Variable: Personality: Test Anxiety (WLE)

 

81,6 % of the index variance are explained by questions Q01 to Q05. Since the Durbin-Watson-value of the unweighted data is 1,981, it can be assumed, that the error values are uncorrelated (The Durbin-Watson values are between 0 and 4. Independence is given in the middle, at 2).

 

Image 4: Regression of the standardised Residuals of ANXTEST on the standardised predicted values

 

In the diagram of standardised residues it can be read, that there is a high probability of homo-scedasticity. In fact the Breusch-Pagan test of heteroscedasticity   indicates that the H0 - hypothesis, regarding Homoscedasticity being given, cannot be rejected.

As a result of this regression the following linear model for ANXTEST is obtained:

ANXTEST = -1,483+0,566*Q01 + 0,526*Q02 + 0,611*Q03 +0,596*Q04 +0,500*Q05

Or standardised, with the standardised variables: Q�01 � Q�05

ANXTESTstd= 0,262* Q�01 + 0,241* Q�02 + 0,285* Q�03 + 0,255* Q�04 + 0,233* Q�01

All regressors are highly significant.

The questions equally contribute to the formation of the index, the differences are very small. Q03 is the question that has the greatest influence on the index. The answers to the Q05 are the ones who have the smallest impact on the index.

Overall the model clarifies 81,6% (highly significant) of the independent variable variance, as we saw above. An effect force of 2,11 indicates, that the coefficient of determination is relevant.

 

2.2 Insert the language in the model

If we integrate the questionnaire language, coded as dummy-variable lang, in the model, no additional variance will be explained.

ANXTEST = -1,482+0,554*Q01+0,529*Q02+0,613*Q03+0,597*Q04+0,505*Q05� 0,022*lang

 

In standardised form:

ANXTESTstd = 0,261* Q�01+0,242* Q�02+0,286* Q�03+0,255* Q�04+0,235* Q�01-0,009*langstd

 

The explained variance of the model does not change and remains at 81,6%. While all the regressors from the items Q01 to Q05 are highly significant and can be found on the niveau of 0,001, this is not the case for the variable lang (significance niveau 0,177 in the model).

From this we can deduce, that a big section of the explained variance of the index �schoolwork-related anxiety� is already present in the questions that form the index, due to the questionnaire language. The collinearity between lang and the index items has as a result a certain size, but a high tolerance (values between 0,7 and 0,9) and a moderate variance inflation factor show that that the model is valid.

 

2.3 The impact of questionnaire language on each Index question

Under the given circumstances we will carry out an investigation concerning the impact of the questionnaire language on the five dichotomic items that form the index. In this case, the language will have the function of independent variable and the items will be the criterion variable and will be analysed separately. The question is, if the questionnaire language has an influence on the answering of index forming statements that is at least partially independent, or if third variables are exclusively responsible for the variance of each corresponding criterion. In case an independent influence is present, the varying intensity, which allows the influence to have an impact on every criterion variable, will be of interest.

We will choose the logistical regression (Bortz & Schuster, 2010), because the linear regression would not be suitable for the dichotomic criterion variable.

In order to simplify the model the variable questlang with the range 0 = �german� and 1 = �Italian� was created out of the variables LANGTEST_QQQ =�Language of Questionnaire� with the range 148 = �german� and 200 = �Italian�. The distribution of  both variables is obviously identic, because only a recoding was carried out.

To inspect the influence of the test language on each item a cross table for each item was build. As an example below a crosstable for the item Q01 is shown.

 

Table 4: Cross table of distribution between agreers and disagreers in both questionnaire languages german and italian for the item Q01

questlang =dummy from LANGTEST_QQQ * New dummy 118Q01:To what extent do you disagree or agree about yourself? I often worry that it will be difficult for me taking a test. Crosstabulation

% within questlang =dummy from LANGTEST_QQQ  

 

 

 

 

 

SYSMIS: 68 (1,36%) -  In brackets: valid cases

New dummy 118Q01:To what extent do you disagree or agree about yourself? I often worry that it will be difficult for me taking a test.

In brackets: S.E.

Total

 

str. disagr./disagr.

agree/strongly agree

questlang =dummy from LANGTEST_QQQ

German (3689)

50,5% (1,3)  

49,0% (1,35)

99,5%

Italian (1228)

37,4% (2,2)

61,7% (2,2)

99,1%

Total valid cases                                             4917

47,5%

52,5%

100,0%

 

This table represents a four-fields-table with marginal distributions. The share complement one other to 100%. If we consider the four-field-table as a 2x2-matrix, we can calculate a determinant of the share of each variable. The determinant can taken as a measure for  the difference on distribution of two variables.This is an easy and fast way to get a general idea about a rough estimate of difference in the distribution of a variable in two part of the population. The determinant of the distribution matrices was calculated to discover the biggest difference between the answers of both language groups.

In the case of Q01 the determinant is 0,505*0,617 � 0,490*0,374 = 0,124790. The bigger is the absolute value of the determinant, the greater is the difference of the share of both variables. The determinant varies from -1 to 1. If a equal distribution in both groups is given, the determinant is 0.

The determinant of each variable Q01 to Q05 is:

Q01: 0,124790     Q02: 0,269214    Q03: 0,247888       Q04: 0,189148   Q05: 0,372654.

We note, that the test language causes the biggest share in the question Q05 within  the distribution of agreers/not agreers. Therefore we inspect deeper the influence of language on the answers to the question Q05.

 

2.4 Results of the logistic regression of the variable questlang  on the criterion Q05

 

Table 5: Chi-square �Table  Model Coefficients Q05

Omnibus Tests of Model Coefficients Q05

 

Chi-square

df

Sig.

Step 1

Step

545,324

1

,000

Block

545,324

1

,000

Model

545,324

1

,000

 

The model chi-square value is the difference between the 0-model (without predictors)  and the predictor-model. The hypothesis H0 that the slope of the predictor lang_quest  is 0 must be rejected (p < 0,05). The predictor contributes therefore significatively at increasing the goodness of model fit.

The observed model is better than the 0-model which contains only the constant.

 

 Table 6: Model Summary Q05

Model Summary Q05

Step

-2 Log likelihood

Cox & Snell R Square

Nagelkerke R Square

1

6118,287a

,105

,142

a. Estimation terminated at iteration number 3 because parameter estimates changed by less than ,001.

 

The Nagelkerke R2  (Nagelkerke, 1991)  is with 14,2 % relatively important (this value is rarely high). This means that the error - reduction obtained with the entering of language in the model measures 14,2%.

Table 7:Hosmer and Lemeshow Contingency Table

Contingency Table for Hosmer and Lemeshow Test

 

ST118Q05NW = strongly disagree/disagree

ST118Q05NW = agree/strongly agree

Total

Observed

Expected

Observed

Expected

Step 1

1

2503

2503,271

1179

1179,002

3682

2

369

368,891

858

858,476

1227

 

The Hosmer and Lemeshow Contingency Table shows us the observed values and the associated expected values. We can see, that the accordance is quite perfect.

Table 8: Classification Table

Classification Tablea

 

Observed

Predicted

 

New dummy 118Q05:I get nervous when I don't know how to solve a task at school.

Percentage Correct

 

strongly disagree/disagree

agree/strongly agree

Step 1

New dummy 118Q05:I get nervous when I don't know how to solve a task at school.

strongly disagree/disagree

2503

369

87,2

agree/strongly agree

1179

858

42,1

Overall Percentage

 

 

68,5

a. The cut value is ,500

 

The overall percentage about 69%  is moderate but acceptable. 87% of disagreement cases were predicted correctly, but only 42% of the agreer were classified in the right way.

 

Table 9: Variables in the Equation with Q05

 

Variables in the Equation Q05

 

B

S.E.

Wald

df

Sig.

Exp(B)

Step 1a

questlang_dummy

1,598

,072

498,169

1

,000

4,941

Constant

-,753

,035

454,376

1

,000

,471

a. Variable(s) entered on step 1: questlang_dummy.

 

The logistic regression equation is : logit(x) = - 0,753 + 1,598 * x,  where in this case x = questlang_dummy. The probability of the assignement can be calculated by

.

 In this way we can calculate that the probability, that a person with the questlang_dummy = 1 falls in the group with the Q05 = 1 is 70 %.

The Exp(B) shows that passing from 0 to 1 in  questlang  increase 3,9 times the probability to get 1 in the statement Q05. This means by the change subgroup from german to italian the probability to agree to the statement increase 3,9 times.  All results are significant.

The logistic regression of the variable questlang_dummy was also carried out for the other statements in the same manner. Due to lack of place we will only show the results in form of odd ratios Exp(B) (in brackets the constant):

Exp(B)(Q01):   1,703 (0,970)  Exp(B)(Q02):   3,884 (1,237)  Exp(B)(Q03):   2,829 (0,570) 

Exp(B)(Q04):   2,411 (0,316) .

The influence of the language is also present in these four variables. The impact that the language has on variables Q01 to Q04 is nevertheless smaller than on Q05, but the variable Q05, on the other hand, does not contribute as much to the explained index variance. Hence we can deduce, that the variable Q05 does not contribute to the anxiety issue as much as the other statements, but it puts more emphasis on the separation of the index regarding language groups.

After showing the clearly stochastic influence of language on the statement  �I get nervous when I don't know how to solve a task at school� we have to control, if other variables influence the statements leading to the anxiety index. Following the PISA 2012 studies there are several variables allowed to influence the anxiety. In PISA 2012 it was the anxiety in mathematics, which was studied in detail. We assume that several of the same behavioural or field variables can be associated to general anxiety  related to the schoolwork that is studied in PISA 2105.

 

2.5 Insert background and behavioural variables in the model

We now introduce in our model the following variables: GENDER, ESCS = economic, social and cultural status, HISEI = highest parental occupational status, BELONG = Subjective well-being: Sense of Belonging to School (WLE = Warm Likelihood Estimate), MOTIVAT = Achieving motivation (WLE), IMMIG = Index Immigration status, STUBEHA = Student-related factors affecting school climate (WLE), TEACHBEHA = Teacher-related factors affecting school climate (WLE), questlang = language of student questionnaire. The criterion remains ST118Q05.

 

Table 10:New Variables in the Equation

Variables in the Equation

 

B

S.E.

Wald

df

Sig.

Exp(B)

Step 1a

questlang_dummy

1,507

,105

206,417

1

,000

4,512

TFGender

-,455

,089

26,151

1

,000

,635

ESCS

,076

,099

,589

1

,443

1,079

BELONG

-,188

,043

19,070

1

,000

,829

MOTIVAT

,300

,049

37,282

1

,000

1,350

hisei

-,005

,004

2,064

1

,151

,995

IMMIG

-,016

,102

,024

1

,876

,984

STUBEHA

-,108

,067

2,603

1

,107

,898

TEACHBEHA

,182

,065

7,855

1

,005

1,200

Constant

,412

,271

2,302

1

,129

1,509

a. Variable(s) entered on step 1: questlang_dummy, TFGender, ESCS, BELONG, MOTIVAT, hisei, IMMIG, STUBEHA, TEACHBEHA.

 

In this table we can see that only the variables questlang, TFGender, Belong, Motivat and Teachbeha have a significant influence on the answering of the Q05 question. The questionnaire language has with these variables the greatest impact, as we can read from the value EXP(B). Although the motivation and the teacher behaviour still have a noticeable probability to influence the acquiescence behaviour, it is smaller concerning the Belong variable. The negative algebraic sign of the TFGender variable indicates, that girls are more likely than boys to admit that an assessment at school makes them anxious.

The variance clarification as a whole has a value of 69% and is therefore not much greater than as it was before the additional variables were introduced.

 
2.6 Other Examples

We can find similar results in other situations, where in the same area items about anxiety have been given to students in different questionnaire languages. Such an example would be Switzerland.

 

Table 11: The index ANXTEST in Switzerland

MEAN and SE of ANXTEST by LANGTEST_QQQ

 

LANGTEST_QQQ

statistic

ANXTEST

se_ANXTEST

N_cases

NU_cases

NU_psu

1

german

MEAN

-,585

,016

53798,21

3481

1

2

italian

MEAN

-,071

,041

3332,97

1018

1

3

french

MEAN

-,165

,034

24005,41

1288

1

While the French speaking teenagers stand out from the OECD-average, with their disagreement regarding the school-related anxiety and the German ones stand out even more, the index of the Italians has a range that stay in proximity of the OECD-average.

In Luxembourg we have also a differentiation between questionnaire languages:

 

Table 12: The index ANXTEST in Luxembourg

MEAN and SE of ANXTEST by LANGTEST_QQQ

 

LANGTEST_QQQ

statistic

ANXTEST

se_ANXTEST

N_cases

NU_cases

NU_psu

1

      german

MEAN

-,236

,018100

3764,74

3619

1

2

      english

MEAN

,116

,073446

230,30

216

1

3

      french

MEAN

,009

,025618

1457,95

1382

1

Also the results of the Ladins in South Tyrol are interesting, as students from same classes filled out the questionnaires in part in different languages. Even here the result turns out to be, that Italian Questionnaire answers tend to emphasise the presence of anxiety more strongly than German ones.

 

3. Conclusion

The difference in the answer pattern between language groups that attend school in the same context is evident. Altough there might be culturally conditioned response sets present, the fact that analyzed students of different language groups sometimes attend the same school and the same boundary condition in the analysed sample exclude a series of disturbing factors: Different school levels, school programs and teacher training are influence variables that can be disregarded. We cannot, due to the research discussed above, reject the hypothesis that the semantics of the questioning in the different languages had an impact on the answer pattern, i.e. the semantics of the questioning in different languages have a considerable probability of influencing the answer pattern. Thus resulting in a less reliable validity regarding tests that have been internationally standardised.  The weight that the meaning attribution has in the questions and statements, especially the ones regarding attitudes and behaviours towards answer patterns should be analysed more thoroughly in international inquiries.

 

Literature

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Short presentation of the authors

Franz Hilpold, head of a high school of economics, now retired, directed the school-evaluation office of the autonomous province of South Tyrol from 2004 to 2012. In 1996 he carried out the TIMSS-Study in South Tyrol and has provided for the elaboration of PISA � data from 2003 to 2012 for his competence area. He collaborates with several institutions regarding school-evaluation issues.

Elita Maule, PhD (University of Fribourg-CH),  Professor at the Music Conservatory of Bolzano-Bozen,  has been visiting professor in a number of occasions at the University of Trento, Padova, Bologna, Bolzano and Hanoi in 2017. She has published several books, essays and articles  specially about didactic of music and musicology also in international scientific  journals.

Markus Hilpold, graduating in music didactics at the Conservatory of Bolzano-Bozen �Claudio Monteverdi�.