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Programme for the International
Assessment of Adult Competencies

German PIAAC Scientific Use File

We provide regarding the German PIAAC Main Study a Scientific Use File (SUF) "PIAAC, Germany – Reduced Version" [ZA5845] for research purpose and off-site access (Download). The SUF complements the German Public Use File (PUF) and can also easily be merged with the PIAAC Public Use Files of other countries in order to perform cross-country analyses. The User-Guide (844 kB) gives a brief overview of the German PIAAC SUF and information necessary for doing basic analyses using the PIAAC data.

The German PIAAC Public Use File excluded certain variables (for example some of the national adaptions) and did not release some variables in all the available detail. The majority of the variables were suppressed or coarsened to adhere with national privacy legislation. The German PIAAC Scientific Use File includes many of the suppressed variables and also releases other variables in full detail (e.g. age or income).

ZA5845: Programme for the International Assessment of Adult Competencies (PIAAC), Germany - Reduced Version

Data collection period

August 2011 - March 2012

Available since

March 2014

Target population

16- to 65-year-old adults

Sample size


PIAAC instruments

Background Questionnaire; competence assessment in the domains literacy, numeracy and problem solving in technology-rich environments

Main topics of Background Questionnaire General information about the household and respondents; educational attainment and participation in further education; labour-force status and employment; skill use at work and in daily life; readiness to learn and volunteering; participation in social life



Further documentation

Technical Report (5,8 MB)

User Guide (824 KB)

Codebook (454 KB)

Background Questionnaire (1,9 MB)

Data access

PIAAC data via GESIS Data Catalogue (DBK)

(directly to the document:ZA5845_PIAAC_DataDistributionContract.pdf“)


Rammstedt, B., Martin, S., Zabal, A., Konradt, I., Maehler, D., Perry, A., Massing, N., Ackermann-Piek, D., & Helmschrott, S. (2016). Programme for the International Assessment of Adult Competencies (PIAAC), Germany – Reduced version. Data file version 2.2.0 [ZA5845]. Cologne: GESIS Data Archive. doi: 10.4232/1.12660