The aim of this work is to analyze the differences in student achievement across Italian macro regions. We provide a multilevel analysis of data from the last PISA (Programme for International Student Assessment) survey edition (2006) and investigate how several factors may influence the results of the educational process. In addition to the classic determinants of student achievement (e.g. family socio-economic background) the goal of this paper is to investigate the extent to which the test-taking motivation may contribute to influence the results from assessment test and to explain partially the territorial differences.
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