, Volume 42, Issue 5, pp 429–441

A brief history of mathematics education in Turkey: K-12 mathematics curricula


    • Faculty of EducationGazi University
  • Ahmet Arıkan
    • Faculty of EducationGazi University
  • Safure Bulut
    • Middle East Technical University
  • Bharath Sriraman
    • Department of Mathematical SciencesThe University of Montana
Original Article

DOI: 10.1007/s11858-010-0250-0

Cite this article as:
Argün, Z., Arıkan, A., Bulut, S. et al. ZDM Mathematics Education (2010) 42: 429. doi:10.1007/s11858-010-0250-0


In this study, we survey the history of mathematics education in Turkey starting with its historical roots in the foundation of the republic. The changes in mathematics education in Turkey over the last century are investigated through an analysis of changes in curricular documents for K-12 schools. We consider the factors and reasons affecting curriculum developments, changes in philosophy and structure in terms of standards, objective and instructions. This article utilizes archival research techniques by examining original sources and illustrates the nature of the changes benefiting from a historical perspective. As a result of such analysis of the aforesaid sources, we have seen that the main reasons for changing mathematics curricula are: to build up a modern civilization in Turkey; the reports of John Dewey and the recommendations of Kate Wofford, William C. Varaceus and Watson Dickerman; the desire to become a member of the European Union; international factors and political situations.


TurkeyMathematics educationCurriculumHistory

Copyright information

© FIZ Karlsruhe 2010