Education Journal

Shaping the Education of the Future — Singapore's Expectations

1998/1999.第26卷第2期及第27卷第1期(Vol. 26 No. 2 & Vol. 27 No. 1).pp. 121–134


Shaping the Education of the Future — Singapore’s Expectations


Leo W. H. TAN


Is there a need to restructure the knowledge base of education in Asia? Have our education systems not served us well? The past two decades have seen most countries in Asia showing impressive economic growth and social development. This has often been attributed to our students doing well in examinations and integrating successfully into a disciplined workforce.

However, as we approach the close of the 20th century, globalization and the accelerated pace of technological development with accompanying socio-political and cultural changes, make it imperative for our educational systems to broaden the focus beyond examination results and discipline. The future workforce will require creative and critical thinkers. Globalization poses new economic challenges especially the mobility of trained labor and those with entrepreneurial skills. The power of information and communication technology has already and will continue to dramatically alter the workplace.

How is the education system to respond? What parts of old knowledge are still relevant? What are the building blocks of the new knowledge base? There are probably no Pan-Asian answers to this issue, but if Asia is to continue to thrive, we have to equip our teachers with the necessary mindsets and skills to put in place new teaching and assessment methodologies that will help nurture among our students the need for life-long learning, creativity and innovation, values, effective communication skills, and confidence in themselves and their future.