PEG Meeting at Heidelberg

From 15.-17th October 2012, the PISA experts on problem solving met on my invitation at Heidelberg in the rooms of the „Internationales Wissenschaftsforum Heidelberg“ (IWH). After PEG meetings at Santa Barbara (2009), Melbourne (2010, 2012), Boston (2011), and Budapest (2011) the final meeting has been hold now at Heidelberg [see my previous blog reports].

This so called „Problem Solving Expert Group“ (PEG) had different tasks: (a)  to formulate the PISA Framework on Problem Solving (can be found here), (b) to guide the item construction process, (c) to select the final items and units [interactive examples can be found under, Username: public, Password: access; items are grouped into pages by domain; navigate to the domain of interest using the menu bar an check out the MP3-Player – comes from our Uni Heidelberg team!], and  (d) to supervise data analysis and report of results.

Compared to PISA 2003 Problem Solving that focused on analytical problem solving, in 2012 the major change consists in the interactivity of the new items (the units from the MicroDYN and MicroFIN type). Instead of static problem solving (analytical problem solving), the focus on dynamic problem situations allows for an assessment of exploration activities and control abilities of complex, intransparent, and dynamic problems.

For me, it was  my last meeting as chairman of this group because our main work has been done now and we are waiting for the upcoming detailed data analysis. The busy part of this job is over. My job as chairman ends in December 2013. The good news: PISA 2015 is on the road now (Art Graesser, former member of my expert group, is now Chairman of the Collaborative Problem Solving Expert Group), and as I wrote in earlier contributions to this blog, collaborative problem solving will become a major domain in PISA 2015. As readers might assume, our Heidelberg group is – under the lead of Uni Luxemburg – involved again in the construction of units for the next wave.

By the way: not only the PEG had its meeting – besides our problem solving experts there were other expert meetings as well: for the math experts, for the questionnaire experts, and the financial experts. This week in October, Heidelberg has seen experts from all around the world for different domains. Hopefully, international data on the output of the education systems from all over the world help to improve their quality.

—–  Press Release (in German): —,

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