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University of Gothenburg

Second International Mathematics Study 1980

The Second International Mathematics Study (SIMS) was an attempt to advance mathematics education through international comparisons of intended curricula, implemented curricula, and student achievement. Student performance was reported separately for content areas.


SIMS included some features that involved replication of items from the First International Mathematics Study (FIMS) to explore changes in the patterns of achievement. A scheme of matrix sampling was applied for test items with a core test and rotated tests. The student questionnaire incorporated three major areas: mathematics in school, personal perceptions on mathematics, and mathematics as a process and mathematics utility. The teacher questionnaires consisted of two attitude scales: mathematics in school and mathematics as a process.

The education systems had the choice of administering the full study, i.e., a longitudinal study, which included pretest and post-test and collection of classroom processes and teacher behavior data, or the “reduced” study, which was cross-sectional with post-test as the only cognitive measure and without classroom process data.

Target Populations

The target populations were students in the grade where the majority have attained the age of 13 years by the middle of the school year and students in the final grade of secondary education.

Participating Educational Systems

Belgium (Flemish), Belgium (French), Canada (British Columbia and Ontario), England and Wales, Finland, France, Hong Kong, Hungary, Israel, Japan, Luxembourg, Netherlands, New Zealand, Nigeria, Scotland, Swaziland, Sweden, Thailand, United States.
Link to the IEA website of early studies


Data - Population

The data files contain school, teacher and student levels.

Belgium (Flemish)

Belgium (French)

Canada (British Columbia)

Canada (Ontario)

England & Wales



Hong Kong






New Zealand








Technical Reports

Travers, K. J. & Westbury, I. (1980). Supplement to The IEA Study of Mathematics I: Analysis of Mathematic Curricula (pdf 6.5 MB)

Wolfe, Richard G. (1987). Second IEA Mathematics Study. Training Manual for Use of the Databank of the Longitudinal, Classroom Process Surveys for Population A (pdf 4 MB)

Westbury, I. & Travers, K. J. (1990). Second International Mathematics Study. Studies.

Sampling Design

Summary of The Sampling Design (pdf)

Garden, Robert A. (1987). Second IEA Mathematics Study. Sampling Report (pdf 9 MB)


Instrument Population A

Student Background Questionnaire. Population A (pdf)



Mathematics test 2 A and B part 1 and 2 (pdf)

Mathematics test 2 A and B part 3 (pdf)

Mathematics test 2 A and B part 4 (pdf)

Mathematics test 2 A and B part 5 (pdf)

Mathematics test 2 A and B part 6 (pdf)

School Questionnaire (pdf)

Instruments mainly scanned from the Ontario version

This is a collection of scanned copies of the
instrumentation used in the IEA Second International
Mathematics Study by Richard Wolfe. It comprises all the tests and questionnaires used in the Population A (grade 8)
longitudinal study. Also, the achievement tests for the
cross-sectional study are included; these are needed for
interpretation of the cross-sectional countries and also
for the longitudinal pretest in Japan.
The versions scanned are for the most part from Ontario,
which are virtually identical to those used in New Zealand
and the USA. The cross-sectional tests are from the
distribution from the Wellington centre.

Countries differed in the extra questions given to students
about calculator use and individual OTL, which were usually
embedded on the answer sheets.

Teacher classroom process questionnaire. Population A (pdf 14 MB)

Student pretest questionnaire. Population A (pdf)

Student posttest questionnaire. Population A (3 MB)

School quetionnaire. Population A (pdf 1 MB)

Teacher questionnaire. population A (pdf 2 MB)

Student tests. Population A (pdf 5 MB)

Teacher OTL questionnaire. Popualtion A (pdf)

Student X tests. Population A (pdf 1 MB)

Documentation Population A

Contents. Population A (pdf)
Basic parameters and sizes. Population A (pdf)
Definition of the response data layout. Population A (pdf)
Cognitive item table. Population A (pdf)
Questionnaire item table. Population A (pdf)
Sampling notes and stratum definitions. Population A (pdf)
Detailed coding an textual explanations. Population A (pdf)