PIRLS has monitored trends in reading achievement at the fourth grade every five years since 2001. PIRLS 2026, the sixth assessment cycle of PIRLS, will provide policymakers and researchers with data on 25 years of trends in student achievement in reading literacy.

PIRLS 2026 completes the transition to a fully digital assessment, concluding a process that began with PIRLS 2021. ePIRLS, an innovative assessment of online informational reading, was introduced in 2016 as an optional component and is now integrated into the digital assessment.