The Agency for Pre-Primary, Primary and Secondary Education has published the results and the report with recommendations of the international survey TIMSS 2019 for Bosnia and Herzegovina. The study monitors trends in mathematics and science and provides data on student achievement in these areas as well as the factors that affect them.

This is the second time the students from Bosnia and Herzegovina have participated in the TIMSS survey and the third time in total that BiH participated in one of the international studies in education.

The survey in Bosnia and Herzegovina has been administered on a sample of 5,628 fourth-grade primary school students in 178 primary schools and 336 classes.

Similar to previous assessments, the results show the achievements of students from Bosnia and Herzegovina are below the average.

Students of the 4th grade in BiH achieved 452 points on the test in mathematics, and 459 points on the test in science. The achievements in both tests have positioned BiH below the average on the TIMSS scale, which is 500 points, and the difference in relation to the average is statistically significant.

Regarding the surrounding countries, better achievements in mathematics, which are above the average on the TIMSS scale, are achieved by students from Serbia (508 points) and Croatia (509 points). It is similar with the average achievements in science – students from Serbia scored 517 points and students from Croatia 524 points. As in the TIMSS 2015 survey, the best achievements in mathematics were achieved by the countries of the Far East – Singapore, Hong Kong, South Korea. They are followed by Japan, the Russian Federation and Northern Ireland.

Recommendations of the TIMSS 2019 Report for Bosnia and Herzegovina:

  • Reduce the percentage of students whose achievements are low, while increasing the percentage of students who achieve excellent results;
  • Increase the coverage of pre-school education at an early age, with a special focus on  three-year-olds;
  • Reduce the difference in achievements between the students of favourable socio-economic status and unfavourable socio-economic status;
  • Improve the quality of the teaching and the teachers;
  • Ensure substantial changes to the curricula in line with the learning outcomes based curriculum;
  • Develop, at the system level, mechanisms for monitoring the quality of education.


The necessity of reforms in education has been confirmed

The Agency for Pre-Primary, Primary and Secondary Education has emphasized, once again, that the care for quality of education is crucial for showing the responsibility of the society. The education authorities, anywhere in the world, including our country, hold a key responsibility to ensure that every child receives the best possible education in order to realize their potential, and this is the way for BiH – to educate young people who will achieve economic and social progress tomorrow.

Therefore, the Agency appeals to the education authorities to take the results of the TIMSS survey seriously, as an incentive to speed up the reform processes.

With the aim of disseminating the results of the survey, the Agency will hold a large online conference on December 15 2020, to present a comprehensive analysis of the collected data. This will provide a detailed insight into the results and recommendations of the TIMSS survey, as well as the practical ways to use the results towards improving the education in BiH.

We are indebted to provide our children with the best possible education in Bosnia and Herzegovina today.