Examining Changes Between China’s 2001 and 2011 Mathematics Curriculum Standards for Basic Education From 21st Century Key Competencies Perspective

Keqiang XU


In the Western developed world, the language of 21st century key competencies, also referred to as 21st century competencies, 21st century skills or key competences, is a powerful means of drawing attention to links between the secondary school curriculum, post-secondary education and the social and economic imperatives of the developed economies. This paper will analyze different levels and breadth of meaning which serves to define 21st century competencies and skills. In particular, the paper looks at how these transformative expressions have characterized the most recent revision of China’s curriculum standards for mathematics in the years of basic education.


Key competencies; China; Mathematics curriculum; Basic education; Information and Communication Technology (ICT)

Full Text:



Anderson, R. (2008). Implications of the information and knowledge society for education. In J. Voogt & G. Knezek (Eds.), International Handbook of Information Technology in Primary and Secondary Education (pp.5-22). New York: Springer.

Asia Pacific Economic Consortium (APEC). (2008). Second APEC Education Reform Symposium, Xian China (Human Resources Development Working Group). Retrieved from http://hrd.apec.org/index.php/21st_Century_Competencies

Australian Curriculum, Assessment and Reporting Authority (ACARA). (2010). The Australian Curriculum: Mathematics. Retrieved from http://www.australiancurriculum.edu.au/mathematics/Curriculum/F-10?layout=1.

Binkley, M., Erstad, O., Herman, J., Raizen, S., Ripley, M., & Rumble, M. (2010). Defining 21st century skills [Draft White Paper 1]. Assessment and Teaching of 21st Century Skills Project. Retrieved from http://atc21s.org/wp-content/uploads/2011/11/1-Defining-21st-Century-Skills.pdf

Communist Party of China. (2012). The Eighteenth National Congress of the Communist Party of China. Retrieved from http://english.people.com.cn/206235/

Dede, C. (2011). Reconceptualising technology integration to meet the challenges of educational transformation. Journal of Curriculum and Instruction, 5(1), 4-16.

Education Statistics Yearbook (China). (2010). Beijing: Beijing University Press.

European Parliament. (2007). Key Competences for Lifelong Learning: A European Reference Framework. Annex of a Recommendation of the European Parliament and of the Council of 18 December 2006 on key competences for lifelong learning. Retrieved from http://eur-lex.europa.eu/LexUriServ/LexUriServ.do?uri=OJ:L:2006:327:0045:0068:EN:PDF

Griffin, P., McGaw, B., & Care, E. (2012). Assessment and Teaching of 21st Century Skills. Dordrecht: Springer.

Hala´sz, G., & Michel, A. (2011). Key competences in Europe: implementation, interpretation, policy formulation and implementation. European Journal of Education, 46(3), 289-306.

International Society for Technology in Education (ISTE). (2007). The ISTE National Education Technology Standards and performance indicators for students. Retrieved from http://www.iste.org/standards

Metiri Group. (2003). EnGauge 21st century skills for 21st century learners. Retrieved from http://metiri.com/2013-updated-continua-for-21st-century-skills-now-available/

Ministry of Education. (2010). Outline of China’s national plan for medium and long-term educational reform and development (2010-2020). Retrieved from https://www.aei.gov.au/news/newsarchive/2010/documents/china_education_reform_pdf.pdf

Ministry of Education. (2001). National curriculum standards of mathematics for basic education (2001 edition). Beijing, PRC: Beijing Normal University Publishing Group.

Ministry of Education. (2011). National curriculum standards of mathematics for basic education (2011 edition). Beijing, PRC: Beijing Normal University Publishing Group.

Organisation for Economic Co-Operation and Development (OECD). (2005). The definition and selection of key competencies [DeSeCo, executive summary]. Retrieved from http://www.oecd.org/dataoecd/47/61/35070367.pdf

Partnership For 21st Century Skills. (2009a). Framework for 21st century learning. Retrieved from http://www.p21.org/index.php

Stacey, K. (2012). The international assessment of mathematical literacy: PISA 2012 framework and items. Paper presented at the 12th International Congress on Mathematical Education, 8-15 July, COEX Seoul, Korea. Retrieved from http://www.icme12.org/upload/submission/2001_F.pdf

United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization. (2008). ICT competency standards for teachers. Implementation guidelines. Retrieved from http://unesdoc.unesco.org/images/0015/001562/156209e. pdf

Wested. (2010). Technological literacy framework for the 2012 national assessment of educational progress [draft]. San Francisco CA: Wested.

Voogt, J., & Pelgrum, H. (2005). ICT and curriculum change. Human Technology; An Interdisciplinary Journal on Humans in ICT Environments, 1(2), 157-175.

Voogt, J., & Roblin, N. (2012). A comparative analysis of international frameworks for 21st century competences: Implications for national curriculum policies. Journal of Curriculum Studies, 44(3), 299-321.

Xinhua News Agency. (2010). Key issues for educational reform in China. Retrieved from http://www.xinhuanet.com/english/china/

DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.3968/n


  • There are currently no refbacks.

Copyright (c) 2015 Higher Education of Social Science

Share us to:   


  • How to do online submission to another Journal?
  • If you have already registered in Journal A, then how can you submit another article to Journal B? It takes two steps to make it happen:

1. Register yourself in Journal B as an Author

  • Find the journal you want to submit to in CATEGORIES, click on “VIEW JOURNAL”, “Online Submissions”, “GO TO LOGIN” and “Edit My Profile”. Check “Author” on the “Edit Profile” page, then “Save”.

2. Submission

  • Go to “User Home”, and click on “Author” under the name of Journal B. You may start a New Submission by clicking on “CLICK HERE”.

We only use three mailboxes as follows to deal with issues about paper acceptance, payment and submission of electronic versions of our journals to databases:
caooc@hotmail.com; hess@cscanada.net; hess@cscanada.org

 Articles published in Higher Education of Social Science are licensed under Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 (CC-BY).


Address: 1055 Rue Lucien-L'Allier, Unit #772, Montreal, QC H3G 3C4, Canada.
Telephone: 1-514-558 6138 
Website: Http://www.cscanada.net Http://www.cscanada.org 
E-mailcaooc@hotmail.com; office@cscanada.net

Copyright © 2010 Canadian Research & Development Center of Sciences and Cultures