Mathematics Education Research Journal

, Volume 19, Issue 1, pp 77–88 | Cite as

Characteristics of mathematics teaching in Shanghai, China: Through the lens of a Malaysian

  • Chap Sam Lim


The mathematical performance of Chinese students, from mainland China, Hong Kong and Taiwan, is widely acclaimed in international comparisons of mathematics achievement. However, in the eyes of the Western educators, the environments established in Chinese schools are deemed relatively unfavourable for mathematics learning. This paper reports on a study that investigates the characteristics of effective mathematics teaching in five Shanghai schools. Findings reveal that those characteristics include (a) teaching with variation; (b) emphasis of precise and elegant mathematical language; (c) emphasis of logical reasoning, mathematical thinking and proofing during teaching; (d) order and serious classroom discipline; (e) strong and coherence teacher-student rapport, and (f) strong collaborative culture amongst mathematics teachers.


Mathematics Teacher Mathematics Learning Mathematical Thinking Chinese Student Mathematics Achievement 


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Copyright information

© Mathematics Education Research Group of Australasia Inc. 2007

Authors and Affiliations

  • Chap Sam Lim
    • 1
  1. 1.School of Educational StudiesUniversity of Science MalaysiaPenangMalaysia

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