What is the difference between monitoring data (UDISE) and assessment data (NAS)? What are the different uses of each of these? What is the difference in the way they have to be read and used?

While monitoring data (UDISE) primarily focuses on administrative and infrastructural aspects of education, assessment data (NAS) assesses student learning outcomes.

UDISE looks at the system’s inputs (e.g., schools, teachers, facilities), while NAS evaluates the outputs (e.g., student knowledge and skills).

On the surface, UDISE data seems apt for answering questions related to resource allocation and administrative decisions, while NAS data appears relevant for educational quality improvement and curriculum design. However, the two data sets complement each other.

The UDISE data informs you of who is in school, how many of them, in the different categories of schools, and the kind of infrastructure, provisions and teachers that are available to them. The NAS data, on the other hand, tells us what students at different levels and of different gender and background are learning, and how well. This helps you see areas that they are doing poorly in.

UDISE information is available about every school whereas NAS data is based on a sample assessment. While UDISE is usually self-reported by schools with some verification by district education offices, NAS is based on assessments conducted by field investigators who are not from that school and often from the state/district levels.

If you were planning on supporting efforts to improve a school or a set of schools in a particular area, these two data sets put together give you all the vital information you need to begin planning.

Some questions you can ask based on these reports are –

  • What are the missing provisions in schools? (UDISE)
  • How do the learning levels of different social groups differ? In which specific LOs are children doing poorly? (NAS)
  • What is the correlation between infrastructural factors (from UDISE) and student learning outcomes (from NAS)?
  • Are there any regional variations in resource allocation and learning outcomes, and if so, what factors contribute to these differences?
  • How does pupil-teacher ratio (UDISE) affect student performance (NAS) in different subjects?
  • Is there a correlation between school dropout rates (UDISE) and student achievement (NAS)? Do regions with low student achievement see high dropout rates?
  • What is the relationship between teacher qualifications (UDISE) and student academic achievements (NAS)?
  • Are there any gender disparities in school facilities and student learning outcomes?

Such an analysis will help you identify priorities and strategies you want to use.