How Critical is Preschool Attendance for Students to Build a Higher Science Self-efficacy? A Comparative Study of Finland, Singapore, and Turkey Using PISA 2015 Data

Keywords: Science self-efficacy, preschool attendance, PISA 2015, science education.


Preschool attendance rates have been increasing in recent decades yet there is some level of deviation throughout the participating countries in PISA. Finland and Singapore are the countries with a very high level of preschool attendance rates while the attendance rate in Turkey lags evidently behind the OECD average. In this study, we investigate the association between preschool attendance and science self-efficacy for these countries using the PISA 2015 data. PISA is an international survey study on 15-year-old students’ science, mathematics and reading literacies to evaluate the education systems in the participating countries. Regression analyses for each country have revealed that students’ preschool attendance is associated with their science self-efficacy scores to some degree in all three countries. The difference in self-efficacy seems to be getting larger as the preschool attendance increases. Singapore has the highest effect size while Turkey has the lowest one considering the magnitude of the association.