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China Smart Education Bluebook and Smart Education Development Index Released by CNAES

On February 13, at the World Digital Education Conference (WDEC), co-organized by the Chinese Ministry of Education and the Chinese National Commission for UNESCO, the President of the China National Academy of Educational Sciences (CNAES), Mr. Li Yongzhi, officially released the China Smart Education Bluebook 2022 and China Smart Education Development Index 2022.

The Bluebook centers on the conceptualization of Smart Education and identifies 16 characteristics from the perspectives of environment, teaching and learning, governance, and talents. It also summarizes the experience of developing smart education in China, proposing seven issues and five initiatives for close attention in the future.

The Bluebook defines Smart Education as a new educational mode of the digital era, essentially different from that of the industrial era. This new form of education lies in five dimensions.

First, its core concepts. Smart education concerns not only people’s life, but also the strategies of the country. Through technology empowerment and data-driven method, it will comprehensively empower education reform, systematically construct a new ecology of education and social relations, provide a suitable education for every learner, and make the Millennium dream of teaching students in accordance with their aptitude come true, which will achieve a comprehensive and highly unified micro-level personal development and macro-level social development for the first time.

Second, new systems and structures. It will dissolve the barriers to school education, prompt the combination of various types of education, resources, and elements, encourage the coordinated efforts of schools, families, and society in talent cultivation, and establish a high-quality personalized lifelong learning system that allows anyone to learn anytime and anywhere.

Third, a new paradigm of teaching and learning. It will merge physical space, social space, and digital space, innovate education and teaching scenarios, promote the fusion of man and technology, cultivate learning communities that transcend classes, grades, subjects, space, and time, and realize the organic unity of large-scale education and personalized education.

Fourth, new content. It will focus on developing competencies, establish knowledge map based on the systematic and logical relationship between the bits of knowledge, innovate ways of content presentation, make learning an enjoyable experience, and cultivate learners’ higher-order thinking skills, comprehensive innovative ability, and lifelong learning ability.

Fifth, a new way of governance. It is centered on data governance and powered by digital technology. It aims to re-engineer the education management and work processes and modernize the system and capacity for education governance.

Considering the fact that the development of smart education is still at the initial stage, the Report on China Smart Education Development Index 2022 established an evaluation indicator system comprising four primary dimensions and twelve secondary dimensions, conducted a qualitative evaluation of the smart education development level in China, in order to provide insights for smart education development in the future. It also comes with three sub-reports, for basic education, vocational education, and higher education respectively.

Entering the digital age, promoting the digital transformation of education and exploring smart education have attracted common attention from all over the world. In 2022, China started the national strategy for education digitalization and established the Smart Education of China platform, an online library hosting the largest education and teaching resources. By January 2023, the platform received a total of 5.87 billion views, serving users from 200 countries and regions. It also played an important role in supporting online classes during the pandemic and in bridging the digital gap, pioneering the explorations towards smart education. As a national education think tank, CNAES attaches great importance to smart education. China Smart Education Bluebook (2022) and the “1+3” Development Index Report seek to gather practical explorations and research results at home and abroad, pooling expertise from various fields to build consensus on digital transformation of education in the future.


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