The shortage of qualified teachers is hampering efforts in many countries to achieve universal primary education. Teacher salaries typically account for more than 80% of education budgets. So governments with limited financial resources are often faced with critical policy trade-offs in seeking to provide quality instruction. To make these decisions, countries need reliable and accurate data.
What is the role of the UIS?
The UIS provides a core set of teacher indicators based on its administrative data collection. This includes traditional indicators, such as: trends in teacher numbers; pupil-teacher ratios; and data on trained teachers. These figures are used by the UIS, governments and international agencies to analyse the current state of the world’s teaching force.
The UIS is also producing more detailed information on the characteristics, working conditions, salaries and qualifications of teachers. Our goal is to make these data available for as many countries as possible. This entails the development of new survey instruments and data collections. For example, the Institute is developing a global module on teachers to be launched in 2015. Another area of UIS work is the quality of data on teacher training. For example, the Institute is developing a taxonomy on teacher training programmes to enhance the international comparability of indicators in this domain.