9 July 2024 at 4:00 pm

New Zealand teens rank among the best for creative thinking

Teenagers in New Zealand are among the most creative thinkers in the world according to the latest edition of OECD’s Programme for International Student Assessment (PISA) Volume 3 results released in June.

New Zealand is the among highest-performing education systems for creative thinking, ranking fifth in the world out of 81 countries, with an average score of 36 points per student that is higher than the OECD average of 33 points.

Education New Zealand Manapou ki te Ao Acting Chief Executive, Dr Linda Sissons said she was delighted to see New Zealand students stand out globally for creative thinking.

“New Zealand classrooms adopt a hands-on, practical approach to learning that encourages students to express their ideas, and to think critically and collaboratively. 

“Creative thinking is a valuable quality that also enriches the outputs of a wide range of tertiary and career fields, from arts, engineering, technology and biomedicine to infrastructure and mathematics.

“We are pleased to see this approach endorsed in the latest PISA tests,” Dr Sissons said.  

The PISA 2022 creative thinking data provides insights into how well education systems are preparing students to think outside the box in different contexts. This was the first time that the PISA test measured the ability of students to demonstrate creativity, specifically their ability to come up with original and diverse ideas.

Between 60-70 percent of students across participating OECD countries also reported that their teachers value their creativity, that they encourage them to come up with original answers, and that they are given a chance to express their ideas in school. 


For further information: 
Sai Raje | Senior Communications Advisor, Education New Zealand Manapou ki te Ao  


+64 21 479 649 


Notes to Editors:  
About Education New Zealand Manapou ki te Ao (ENZ) https://www.enz.govt.nz/    

ENZ is the government agency dedicated to helping Aotearoa New Zealand realise the social, cultural, and economic benefits of international education. Our role is to promote New Zealand as a high-quality education destination offering excellent education and students experiences and to encourage New Zealand students to study overseas. 

With approximately 110 staff in 16 locations around the world, ENZ works closely with New Zealand’s diverse education sector which includes schools, English language providers, Private Training Establishments, Institutes of Technology and Polytechnics (Te Pūkenga), and universities. Internationally, we work with a range of education stakeholders, including government agencies and education providers to identify and encourage sustainable growth opportunities for New Zealand’s education sector.


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