Digital technologies for education in China: National ambitions meet local realities

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China has been a pioneer in including information and communication technologies for educational purposes (ICT4E) in national educational policies. Having recognized the role technology can play in education in the late 1990s, the country has by now emerged as an international leader in propagating the benefits of ICT4E. At the levels of the school and individual learner, however, ICT4E still play a subordinated role. This mismatch between political ambitions and educational realities can largely be attributed to contradictions within the Chinese education system, which attempts to reconcile diverging political, social, and pedagogical objectives.

The paper will begin by introducing the reader to these contradictions, to then briefly outline what ICT4E entail in general, and how they are relevant in China. The subsequent sections will describe the goals, initiatives, and policies related to ICT4E in China particularly since 2012/2013 – the time when Xi Jinping took over as head of party and state; identify actors and their interests; shed light on implementation, experiments, and outcomes; and conclude by discussing the global implications of Chinese ICT4E initiatives.


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Titel på värdpublikationServe the people. Innovation and IT in China’s development agenda
RedaktörerMatthias Stepan, Jane Duckett
FörlagMercator Institute for China Studies
Volym6 (October 2018)
StatusPublished - 2018 okt 18
Peer review utfördJa


NamnMERICS Papers on China
FörlagMercator Institute for China Studies


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