District Rankings Methodology Frequently Asked Questions

  • 1. What are the Pakistan District Education Rankings?

    The Pakistan District Education Rankings report is an annual summary of education performance in Pakistan, published through an SDPI and Alif Ailaan partnership. Launched in 2013 and now in its fourth edition, the report promotes healthy political competition among the provinces and among the districts by establishing indices that help assess the state of education in widely varying geographical regions of the country. Districts and provinces are ranked based on two indices, namely the Education Score and the Infrastructure Score.
  • 2. What is the Education Score?

    The Education Score of a district or province summarises how many children are in school, and the standard of education they receive. It is composed of four educational output indicators: an access score, retention score, learning score and gender parity score. Each of the four components are scored out of 100 and an average of these scores is taken to arrive at the Education Score. Districts and provinces are then ranked based on these Education Scores.
  • 3. What is the Infrastructure Score?

    The Infrastructure Score summarises the state of basic infrastructure and facilities in government schools. It is made up of five components: availability of drinking water, electricity, toilet, boundary wall, and the condition of school building. Each of the five components is scored out of 100 and an average of these scores is taken to arrive at the Infrastructure Score. Districts and provinces are then ranked based on these Infrastructure Scores.
  • 4. What is the difference between the Education Score and the Infrastructure Score?

    The Education Score is a measure of educational outcomes and is based on output indicators. The Infrastructure Score, on the other hand, is an input indicator which reflects public-sector spending on state education facilities.
  • 5. What are the data sources for the Education and Infrastructure Scores?

    The data used for the construction of Education and Infrastructure Scores come from three sources. These are the National Education Management Information System (NEMIS), the Pakistan Social Living Standards Measurement Survey (PSLMS) and the Annual Status of Education Report (ASER). Two of these datasets (NEMIS and PSLMS) are official government datasets; however, as government data on the quality of education at district level are not collected, the Rankings rely upon the NGO-produced ASER data to track these outcome measures.
  • 6. Does Alif Ailaan collect its own data for the compilation of district rankings report?

    No. Alif Ailaan and SDPI compile and analyse the most recent existing government and non-government datasets. Two out of the three datasets used for the district rankings report are from official government sources. According to Article 25-A of the Constitution, the provision of education to children aged 5-16 is the responsibility of the state. The onus of collecting and presenting quality data on education that is timely also rests with the state.
  • 7. When are the data sources that are used in the rankings, collected and published?

    The dates of the beginning and end of the data collection process and the dates for official release for each of the three data sources used in the District Education Rankings 2016 have been given below:

    The dates of data collection and official release for each of the three data sources used in Rankings 2015 have been given below:

    Data source Date of data collection Date of official release (publication)
    PSLMS 2014-15 October 2014 - June 2015 April 2016
    NEMIS 2014-15 October 2014 February 2016
    ASER 2015 September 2015 December 2015

    The PSLM survey is carried out at the district-level after a gap of one year. Prior to the 2014-15 PSLM survey, the last household survey of districts was carried out in 2012-13.

    Data source Date of data collection Date of official release (publication)
    PSLMS 2012-13 October 2012 - June 2013 April 2014
    NEMIS 2014-15 October 2013 February 2015
    ASER 2015 September 2014 December 2015

    The PSLM survey is carried out at the district-level after a gap of one year. Prior to the 2014-15 PSLM survey, the last household survey of districts was carried out in 2012-13.

  • 8. Do the rankings cover all districts of the country?

    The number of districts ranked depends both on the availability of data and the quality of data available. For the Education Score, 140 out of 145 districts were ranked in 2013, 141 out of 146 in 2014, 142 out of 148 in 2015 and 145 out of 151 districts have been ranked in 2016. For the Infrastructure Score, 144 districts out of 145 were ranked in 2013, 145 out of 146 in 2014, 147 out of 148 in 2015 and 146 out of 151 districts have been ranked in 2016.
  • 9. Do the rankings cover all schools, including private sector schools?

    The Education Score is representative of private schools to a certain extent, given that PSLMS and ASER are household surveys. NEMIS, on the other hand, is an annual school census only of government schools; it is the sole data source for the Infrastructure Score, and the source of the retention and gender parity data in the Education Score.
  • 10. What are the limitations of the Pakistan District Education Rankings report?

    The limitations of Pakistan District Education Rankings report reflect the limitations of the data sources used, which are clearly articulated in the ‘limitations’ section of every rankings report. Being a strong advocate of a timely, comprehensive and better quality government data regime on education, Alif Ailaan and SDPI aim to drive a constructive debate on the current gaps in the state’s education data regime by pro-actively using government data. Some of the major limitations of official government data include the long lag between collection and publication of data, the absence of a school census that covers all schools, including private schools, instead of only government schools, and the lack of an annual, standardised national data on learning outcomes.