4228.0 - Programme for the International Assessment of Adult Competencies, Australia, 2011-2012 Quality Declaration 
ARCHIVED ISSUE Released at 11:30 AM (CANBERRA TIME) 15/02/2013   
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The 2011-2012 Programme for the International Assessment of Adult Competencies (PIAAC) is an international survey coordinated by the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD). The OECD proposes to publish international results on 8 October 2013 in a comprehensive International Report. Access will be provided free of charge to an online Data Explorer tool with which it will be possible to design and create output in the form of tables only. Security measures will ensure the confidentiality of survey respondents. These outputs will be available from the OECD website at www.oecd.org.

This release contains preliminary Australia data for the literacy and numeracy skill domains only, for selected PIAAC variables. The data is presented in commentary and a data cube available from the Downloads tab.

PIAAC was enumerated throughout Australia from October 2011 to March 2012.

The survey collected information on skills and competencies for people aged 15-74 years in the domains of:
  • literacy
  • numeracy
  • problem solving in technology-rich environments.
PIAAC also collected information on topics including education and training, labour force activities, income and skills used at work and in everyday life.

Information on the concepts and methods used in the survey, reliability of the results and definitions are included in the Explanatory Notes, Glossary, Appendices and Data quality (Technical Note). Differences between data items highlighted in the commentary are statistically significant (refer to Data quality (Technical Note)).

Additional data cubes and commentary for final data will be appended to this publication during 2013.


PIAAC was preceded by the Adult Literacy and Life Skills Survey (ALLS) 2006 and Survey of Aspects of Literacy (SAL) 1996. Data previously released in the ALLS and SAL publications are not directly comparable with PIAAC data due to:
  • changes in the interpretation of the skill levels
  • combining the prose and document literacy scales into a single literacy scale
  • the numeracy scores from ALLS being recalculated using a model to incorporate the results of all countries that participated in ALLS. (The previous model was based only on countries that participated in the first round of ALLS.)
Remodelled scores from ALLS and SAL will be included in additional data cubes to be appended to the PIAAC publication later in 2013.

Refer to the Comparability of Time Series section in the Explanatory Notes for further information about comparing data from PIAAC with the previous surveys.


As estimates have been rounded, discrepancies may occur between the sum of component items and the published total. Published percentages are calculated prior to rounding and therefore some discrepancy may occur between these percentages and those that could be calculated from the rounded figures.


Information about Australian Bureau of Statistics' (ABS) activities in the education and training field is available from the Education and Training Topics @ a Glance page on the ABS website.

For more information about the PIAAC international survey, refer to the OECD website at www.oecd.org.


For further information about these and related statistics, contact the National Information and Referral Service on
1300 135 070.