British teenagers more competitive than peers but more likely to bullied

The Asahi Shimbun

The findings for the United Kingdom also highlighted that bullying, anxiety, and high internet use during the school day are more prevalent than previously thought - and higher than many other OECD countries.

According to the 2015 Pisa student wellbeing study, an above average proportion of 15-year-old students in Luxembourg who completed the survey reported a strong sense of belonging.

The survey asked pupils how they feel about life, with the UK's 15-year-olds ranking their life satisfaction as 6.98 on a scale of o to 10 (10 being the best score).

This puts the United Kingdom behind nations such as France (7.63), Germany (7.35), Spain (7.42) Latvia (7.37) and the USA (7.36), but ahead of others such as Japan (6.80) Turkey (6.12) and Korea (6.36).

Among the Nordic Countries, Finland's mean average was highest - at 7.89%.

Overall, the United Kingdom took 38th place for life satisfaction, out of 48 OECD countries, and partner nations.

That rate varies between 1 percent and 9.5 percent across OECD countries.

It is tempting to equate low levels of life satisfaction among students in East Asia or elsewhere to long study hours, but the data show no relationship between the time students spend studying, whether in or outside of school, and their satisfaction with life.

Young people in the United Kingdom are also significantly more likely to spend time on the internet than students globally, with around a quarter of British children described as "extreme" internet users.

Sue Thomson, the director of educational monitoring and research at the Australian Council for Education Research, said she was surprised by the findings and that it was good to see that students have high levels of motivation.

Despite the danger of excessive internet use and the threat of bullying, most teenagers around the world are "relatively" happy with their lot, a major OECD survey showed on Wednesday (April 19).

It is understood that up to 70% of students are "very anxious" ahead of exams, even when they claim to be well prepared - this figure is above the OECD average of 55%.

Almost 47 per cent of Australian students say they get very tense when they study, far higher than the average of 37 per cent and 18 per cent of students in Finland. Colombian teenagers reported high levels of life satisfaction.

Similarly, 76% said they wanted to be the best in their class, outstripping the 59% average. Just over half of male students described themselves as highly satisfied, compared with 36 percent of their female counterparts. It also revealed that pupils in the United Kingdom were more likely to say they were anxious about tests than pupils in nearly all other countries. But the findings from PISA show how teachers, schools and parents can make a real difference. The PISA 2015 results show that both verbal and psychological bullying occur frequently in many countries.

It found Britain made little progress in these core areas in three years.

French students spend less time studying than the OECD average, with 10 percent of students spending at least 60 hours a week studying in and out of school compared to the average of 13.3 percent.

Barnardo's chief executive Javed Khan said: "These findings highlight just how vital it is for children to have someone who believes in them".

"A caring home is essential to children's well-being and children themselves have told us that having someone to love, listen to, support and trust them is vital for them to lead happy lives".