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There is concern that Japanese children generally are not as interested in science as they used to be. Although the government has adopted countermeasures, it seems that they are not producing the desired effect.

In March 2007, fourth graders and middle school second-year students in Japan sat mathematics and science tests as part of the Trends in International Mathematics and Science Study conducted by the Amsterdam-based International Association for the Evaluation of Educational Achievement. In each category, the average test score of Japanese students was either third, fourth or fifth highest of any nation. Japanese students’ average scores were also slightly better than in the previous TIMSS, held in 2003.

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