Adaptivities in the Singapore Education System: From Great to Excellent

Part of the Education Innovation Series book series (EDIN)


This chapter explores how educational research invested in the Singapore education system enables Singapore to adapt and progress. Singapore has been characterised as a ‘great’ system because students have consistently excelled in international benchmark examinations. By analysing educational research conducted across various levels of the system, the chapter attempts to understand the underpinning reasons for why and how the system has achieved such a status. These research findings provide a snapshot of the pedagogical innovations implemented across the system to inform how Singapore can shift from great to excellent. Moving forward, transformations towards twenty-first century teaching and learning goals are encouraged. The system needs to be adaptive in different ways at various levels and yet be aligned towards a shared vision. From the analyses and discussion, the move from ‘great’ to ‘excellent’ appears to focus on qualitative dimensions such as teacher quality for student-centred outcomes over and above the typical quantitative measures. The chapter hopes to bring across the stance that this shift requires a change process with key investments on human capital, namely, the teachers in the system through a long and gradual process.


Education System School Leader System Goal Learning Practice Pedagogical Innovation 
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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media Singapore 2014

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.National Institute of EducationNanyang Technological UniversitySingaporeSingapore

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