International Association for the Evaluation of Educational Achievement published (last Thursday) the IEA International Computer and Information Literacy Study (ICILS) 2013, which reports on results of an assessment that was carried out in 21 countries, surveying almost 60000 students and almost 35000 teachers. The research questions were concerned with "Variations in CIL within and across countries; Aspects of schools, education systems, and teaching associated with student achievement in CIL; The extent to which students’ access to, familiarity with, and self-reported proficiency in using computers is associated with student achievement in CIL; Aspects of students’ personal and social backgrounds associated with CIL."
Schoolchildren had to do things like respond to an email, cut and paste a URL, register someone at a website and create a poster with specified elements. I would therefore say it was more "computer literacy" than "information literacy" (and the emphasis is on the need for people to be able to use computers to do things). However, it it is an interesting report that I have only skimmed. As well as administering the assessment, questions about home and school use of computers were asked, and information on age, socio-economic class and gender was collected. There were variations between countries, but e.g. "Among the socioeconomic
indicators, parental occupational status and home literacy resources in particular were positively associated with CIL across the participating countries." Girls performed better than boys, particularly in some countries e.g. the Sydney Herald pointed out that Australian girls ahead of boys in computer literacy
Additionally, teachers were asked questions about availability, use of, experience with, and attitudes to use of computers. One set of question asked them the extent to which they used ICT with students "The capability most widely emphasized in their teaching was “accessing information efficiently.” Overall across countries, 63 percent (the ICILS 2013 average) of teachers said they emphasized this skill in their teaching. The highest national percentage was recorded in Australia (76%) and the lowest in Lithuania (40%)." (p.215).
International Computer and Information Literacy Study (ICILS) 2013: Preparing for Life in a Digital Age: http://www.iea.nl/fileadmin/user_upload/Publications/Electronic_versions/ICILS_2013_International_Report.pdf
Additionally a press release gives these links:
The European Commission report on findings for the European countries participating in ICILS 2013, Main findings and implications for education policies in Europe http://ec.europa.eu/education/library/study/2014/ec-icils_en.pdf
A package of press materials, including the press release and infographic on the study highlights http://www.iea.nl/fileadmin/user_upload/Studies/ICILS_2013/IEA_ICILS_2013_Press_Release.zip
"View a video demonstration of an example student test module from ICILS 2013, After-school Exercise" http://www.iea.nl/index.php?id=475
Photo by Sheila Webber: autumn leaves, November 2014