A central point of entry to ILSAs

ILSA Gateway is the point of entrance to information on international large-scale assessments (ILSAs) in education. Here you will find comprehensive information on each study, including direct links to data and documents on the various external study websites, a database of study-related research papers, and announcements of recent news and upcoming events. The Gateway has been designed for a worldwide audience, first and foremost researchers, but it should also be a useful tool for policymakers, decision makers, and all others interested in education research. It will facilitate access to ILSA-related resources, encourage knowledge exchange and discussions, and inspire future research.

We will continue to expand the Gateway and its services, based on the needs and interests of its users and the ILSA community.


­­­Selection criteria

ILSA has become an umbrella term for all transnational studies in education, irrespective of whether they include a cognitive assessment component. These are our selection criteria for inclusion here:

  • The study has a strong and primary focus on education, any sector of education (i.e., formal, informal, non-formal) and any age group or population (e.g., kindergarten or primary level children, secondary or tertiary level students, adults).
  • The study covers at least five different countries, education systems, or jurisdictions. Other (regional or national) studies may be included if the outputs are clearly and strongly linked to an ILSA already present here, if such a study would have a lighthouse function that could be of interest to a larger, international audience, and it provides at least partial documentation in English (see below).
  • The study is large in scope in the sense that it intends to model a system and/or population of interest as a whole.
  • The ILSA is accompanied by comprehensive technical documentation such that Gateway users can evaluate its design, procedures, and data.
  • Information about and from the study is available in English. However, in order to allow a wider audience to become familiar with important regional studies, ILSAs in other key languages (e.g., Spanish and French), may be included here if at least part of the documentation is provided in English.
  • The study is of high relevance: studies focusing on substantive notions, implications, and aspects, whether applied or basic research, as well as studies responding to the growing demand for evidence-based policy solutions (regardless of whether a single study or a combination thereof). Studies concentrating solely on policy contexts have not been included, for now.
  • The last cycle of the study was conducted or initially reported less than five years ago. Older ILSAs that still have important repercussions and implications for current and future research and policy may also be included.
  • Major works by various international governmental and non-governmental organizations in the ILSA field will be included.


Development and editorial process

The ILSA Gateway, an initiative of the National Center for Education Statistics (NCES), was developed and is maintained by the International Association for the Evaluation of Educational Achievement (IEA), specifically the Research and Analysis Unit (RandA) at IEA Hamburg.

The IEA coordinated the work of the ILSA Gateway editorial group, which established the foundation for the site by defining both the type of content to be presented and the study selection criteria. The group received support from Steering Committee members, IEA study experts, various IEA committees, and ICTS Unit. Although the editorial group framed the Gateway content, the specific study page content was and still is developed in close collaboration with the many study directors and initiators.


Our Team

At the ILSA Gateway, our team serves as the driving force behind the platform's success. We are a dedicated group of professionals who are deeply committed to providing valuable insights and resources to the international education community. Within IEA, the ILSA Gateway's development and operation are made possible through the collective efforts of the Steering Committee members, the Development and Maintenance Team, and the Support Team.

Steering Committee members play a pivotal role in shaping the direction of the ILSA Gateway, overseeing financial aspects, contributing to its future development, and ensuring strategic alignment.

The Development and Maintenance Team oversees content management, stakeholder engagement, and technical proficiency to ensure the smooth and effective operation of the Gateway, enhancing the user experience.

Our Support Team consists of diligent students who contribute significantly to maintaining the Gateway by preparing study content, adding relevant news and papers, and ensuring the platform remains up to date.

The commitment and efforts of all parties involved play a crucial role in keeping the platform vibrant and informative for our users.

Get to know the team behind the ILSA Gateway.



We gratefully acknowledge NCES for the generous support for the development of the Gateway, study directors and their teams, staff and students from the Research and Analysis Unit for their important contributions to the production and editing of study-related content. Information about individual editors and authors can be found at the end of the study Organization pages.


For more information about ILSA Gateway, feel free to contact us.