Japan has the 6-3-3-4 education system — compulsory education of six years in elementary school and three years in junior high school. Students then commonly go on to three years in high school and four years in university.

International comparisons show that after completing their compulsory education, the scholastic ability of Japanese 15-year-olds is excellent, occupying a top position among the Group of Seven countries. In 2015, the Program for International Student Assessment (PISA), which evaluates the learning achievement of students among OECD members, Japan ranked second in scientific literacy following Singapore, eighth in reading comprehension after South Korea and fifth in mathematical literacy behind Taiwan. Improved performances in such Asian entities as Singapore and Hong Kong are spectacular, but Japan is also maintaining a fairly good level of education not far behind them.

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