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Report on teaching and learning of mathematics in Europe – industrial initiative proposals

This recently published report from the National Center for Mathematics Education in Göteborg, Sweden gives an overview of the trends in interest and knowledge of mathematics among European pupils and students, examples of industrial efforts to increase young people’s interest in mathematics, and recommendations to the European Round Table of Industrialists (ERT) on action by industry needed to increase young people’s interest in mathematics.

As a result the report shows that there are very few nation wide, long-term examples of industrial efforts to increase young people’s interest in mathematics as a subject of its own.

Most initiatives so far are focusing on science and technology, and not noticing enough the fact that mathematics is the very language and modelling tool for these activities. Shortcomings in mathematics are known to be an essential hindrance to young people’s interest and success in science and technology. The industrial sectors must take a pro-active role, claiming that they can provide a better content in every educational sector, not only more money.

The report outlines four main proposals that are relevant for the European Union as a whole. The proposals are not just directed at central agencies and authorities, but also at parents, organizations, associations and network in society and not least the business sector.

  1. Support and develop activities to increase interest in and provide greater insight into the value, role and significance of mathematics in everyday and working life, science and society.
  2. Train qualified teachers in mathematics on all levels for all children, young people and adults.
  3. Support and coordinate all the positive forces promoting better mathematics learning and teaching.
  4. Clarify and develop aims, goals, content and assessment in mathematics for the entire education system.

For further information, download the report here (PDF file).

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