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New & Forthcoming Titles | Literacy and Language in East Asia - Shifting Meanings, Values and Approaches

Literacy and Language in East Asia

Shifting Meanings, Values and Approaches

Kell, Marilyn, Kell, Peter

2014, XI, 165 p. 4 illus., 1 illus. in color.

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  • A critical analysis of the high performing East Asian nations and the “contests” and “league tables” derived from international literacy and numeracy achievement tests
  • Argues for education systems to embrace reforms that promote capabilities which prepare students for life and work in modern and globalised communities
  • A unique approach that departs from traditional country study approaches and seeks to identify how each nation has been influenced by cross national policy borrowing

This book critically explores why Asian nations are on top of the world in student achievement tests in reading and literacy, yet governments and industry in these nations are anxious about a crisis in education.

Why are governments anxious about the capabilities and skills of school and university graduates in a global economy when there is a Asian economic boom?  The authors explore questions about how the Asian countries value test-based examination curriculum and its influence on the practices of teaching learning and the lives of young people in Asia. The authors describe the challenge of change for East Asian nations to develop more relevant approaches to literacy and language and more inclusive societies focussed on the needs of young people and not exam results.

Dr Marilyn Kell is a researcher at Charles Darwin University, Australia.

Professor Peter Kell is Head of School and Professor of Education at Charles Darwin University, Australia.

Content Level » Research

Keywords » East Asian Miracle for Education - Education and Curriculum Reform in East Asia - Graduate attributes in East Asia - Inequalities in East Asian Education - Literacy Standards in Asia Pacific - Literacy assessment in Asia Pacific - Multi-lingual education - PISA, TIMSS and PIRLS East Asian countries - School development in Asia - Testing and Examinations in East Asia

Related subjects » Education & Language

Table of contents 


  1. Introduction
  2. What is literacy and why is it important?
  3. High Stakes Testing, Literacy Wars, Globalisation and Asia
  4. League Tables and the Politics of Ranking
  5. Global Testing: PISA, TIMSS and PIRLS
  6. International Testing: The Global Education Space Race?  
  7. Schooling, national development and growth in Asia
  8. The “East Asian Miracle” economies, inequalities and schooling
  9. Literacy and workforce capabilities
  10. The New Dynamic and shifting approaches literacy and language in East Asia

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