TERCE – the road so far

The results of the third edition of the most important study to measure the learning achievement of students in primary education in Latin America,  TERCE, which is coordinated by the Latin American Laboratory for Assessment of the Quality of Education (LLECE), were released at a launch event on December 4, in Brasilia, Brazil.

To date, five years have been dedicated in preparing and developing the Third Regional and Comparative and Explanatory Study (TERCE). The following chronology presents the key milestones that have marked this path of learning for the contribution to knowledge generation on educational assessment in the region.

2010 – 2011 Preparation and development of tests and measuring instruments, as well as the theoretical framework for the analysis of the associated factors influencing learning achievement.

  • Elaboration of measuring instruments (test and questionnaires) and theoretical framework.
  • XXVII National LLECE Coordinators’ Meeting in June 22-23, Guatemala, which established the approved work plan for 2012 and key decision-making.
  • School curricula analysis for TERCE by the Colombian Institute for Educational Evaluation (ICFES).
  • Seminar on the Elaboration of Items for TERCE May 25-27, Bogota.
  • Configuration of the High-level Technical Advisory Board for TERCE (CTAN) and First Meeting, September 10-11, , Montevideo.
  • Development of questionnaires for measuring factors associated to learning achievement.
  • Beginning of the sampling process. 
  • Review of items by external expert, Giuliana Espinosa, of Peru.
  • Development of data entry software specifications and sample managing.
  • In November, changes proposed in the review of the items were incorporated.
  • XXVIII National Coordinators (CNs) Meeting, December 15 – 16, Lima.
  • Definition of the planning of the pilot programme.

2012 – Pilot application

  • Formal application of the TERCE Pilot in March 2012.
  • Feedback is prepared and sent by the countries on the measured items.
  • IEA distributes WinW3s and DME software. Training on use and application is provided in Santo Domingo and Brasilia to those who will apply the tests in countries in the Northern and Southern hemispheres, respectively.
  • “Workshop on Assessment of Open-ended Questions for TERCE Pilot”, July 23-25 , Viña del Mar.
  • Signing of the MIDE UC and UNESCO agreement in April.
  • Elaboration of the national modules (in collaboration with LLECE’s Senior Advisor, Ernesto Treviño; as well as the pilot samples and final design of the codebooks (software), coding manuals and national adaptations).
  • The pilot is applied in the countries of the Northern Hemisphere between July and August, and in the Southern Hemisphere from September to October.
  • XXIX National Coordinators Meeting, 3-4 September, and CNs Training on Analysis of Associated Factor related to Learning Achievement/Multi-level Models, September 5-6, Viña del Mar, Chile.
  • Second High-level Technical Advisory Board for TERCE (CTAN) Meeting, December 13-14, Santiago.

2013 – Final Application

  • Training of Software Use and Final Application of the TERCE, March 21–22, Managua.
  • In May, the final application of the TERCE tests begins in the 15 member countries and the Mexican state of Nuevo León.
  • “Seminar on the Correction of Open Items from the Third Regional Comparative and Explanatory Study (TERCE), June 6-7, Lima.
  • “Second Course on Associated Factors of the Third Regional Comparative and Explanatory Study (TERCE), July 15-18, Manaos.
  • XXXI National LLECE Coordinators’ Meeting, November 4-5, Barranquilla, marking the official closure of the final TERCE application phase.

2014 – Analysis, elaboration and publication of final reports

  • XXXII National LLECE Coordinators’ Meeting April 7-8, Quito, in which participants made 29 agreements (LINK A NOTA DE QUITO)
  • In May begins the analysis of the results of the tests applied in 2013.
  • “TERCE Seminar on Standard Setting”, July 10-11, Santiago, consisting of academic sessions to establish minimum performance levels.
  • Third High-level Technical Advisory Board for TERCE (CTAN) Meeting, October 6-7, Mexico City.
  • XXXIII National Coordinators Meeting, October 9-10, Monterrey.
  • First release of TERCE results: December 4, 2014, Brasilia


  • Extraordinary meeting of National Coordinators of the Latin American Laboratory for Assessment of the Quality of Education (LLECE). April 14-15, Buenos Aires
  • Launching event: release of results and TERCE associated factors. During the first half of 2015, Santiago, Chile


Download TERCE's information kit (PDF Spanish/English)

Contact us

TERCE who's who
Country teams and UNESCO contacts

Contacts for the press

Carolina Jerez Henríquez
Knowledge Management Section, OREALC/UNESCO Santiago
Email: c.jerez(at)unesco.org
Tel. (+56-2) 24724607

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