Learning is at the heart of the global education and development agenda for 2030. It goes beyond the ability to read, write or perform simple arithmetic, and entails a range of relevant competencies needed for different purposes and life junctures of children, youth and adults. UNESCO’s commitments to ensuring effective and relevant learning for all have placed renewed attention on key drivers for improving learning contents, processes and outcomes. This includes more relevant curriculum and pedagogy, better teacher preparation and support, safe and inclusive learning environments, as well as assessment of learning.
Learning assessments provide direct measurement of knowledge, skills attitudes and competencies. They do not only provide feedback to help improve and validate learning outcomes, but also offer critical information needed for the governance and management of national education systems, and have become increasingly central to strategic debates on education policy and reform in many countries. UNESCO has engaged in a wide range of activities in the area of learning assessment including data collection, capacity development, technical and logistical support, networking, research and knowledge sharing. These learning assessment activities address the learning needs of children, youth and adults in a breadth of domains such as: