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The United Nations publishes a Human Development Index every year, which consists of the Education index, GDP Index and Life Expectancy Index. These three components measure the educational attainment, GDP per capita and life expectancy respectively.
The Education Index is measured by the adult literacy rate (with two-thirds weighting) and the combined primary, secondary, and tertiary gross enrollment ratio (with one-third weighting). The adult literacy rate gives an indication of the ability to read and write, while the GER gives an indication of the level of education from kindergarten to postgraduate education.
Education is a major component of well-being and is used in the measure of economic development and quality of life, which is a key factor determining whether a country is a developed, developing, or underdeveloped country.
2008 Education Index
* Change in value from the last report is given as follows:
* = increase.
* = steady.
* = decrease.
* Montenegro and Serbia are not marked with the above as they are new to the index.
The latest index was released on December 18, 2008. This statistical update covers the period up to 2006. 1 is the highest possible theoretical score, indicating perfect education attainment. All countries considered to be developed countries possess a minimum score of 0.8 or above, although the great majority have a score of 0.9 or above. For ranking based on the Human Development Index, see List of countries by Human Development Index.