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Title: Confucius: Philosopher of twenty-first century skills
Authors: Tan, Leonard Yuh Chaur
Keywords: Twenty-first century skills
Critical thinking
Issue Date: 2016
Citation: Tan, L. (2016). Confucius: Philosopher of twenty-first century skills. Educational Philosophy and Theory, 48(12), 1233-1243.
Abstract: In this essay, I examine the Partnership for 21st Century Skills (P21) framework from a Confucian perspective. Given that this framework has attracted attention around the world, including Confucian-heritage societies, an analysis of how key ideas compare with Confucian values appears important and timely. As I shall show, although Confucian philosophy largely resonates with the "Learning and Innovation Skills" in the P21 framework, namely, critical thinking, communication, collaboration and creativity, it also provides fresh perspectives and nuances the framework. These insights include the notion that critical thinking is not a strictly cognitive endeavour but an affective one as well, a social construal of the self, and an ethical notion of creativity. This paper aims to redress the under-representation of Asian philosophy in the philosophy of education. It also hopes to initiate more philosophical dialogues between Asia and the West.
Description: This is the final draft, after peer-review, of a manuscript published in Educational Philosophy and Theory. The published version is available online at
ISSN: 0013-1857 (print)
1469-5812 (online)
Other Identifiers: 10.1080/00131857.2016.1182416
Appears in Collections:Journal Articles

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