Framework for 21st Century Learning – The Partnership for 21st Century Skills

1. Mastery of core subjects and 21st century themes is essential for students in the 21st century. Core subjects include

English, reading or language arts
World languages
Government and Civics
In addition to these subjects, we believe schools must move beyond a focus on basic competency in core subjects to promoting understanding of academic content at much higher levels by weaving 21st century interdisciplinary themes into core subjects:
Global awareness

Financial, economic, business and entrepreneurial literacy

Civic literacy

Health literacy

Environmental literacy


2. Learning and Innovation Skills

Creativity and Innovation

Critical Thinking and Problem Solving

Communication and Collaboration


3. Information, Media and Technology Skills

Information Literacy

Media Literacy

ICT Literacy


4. Life and Career Skills



Adapt to Change

Adapt to varied roles, jobs responsibilities, schedules and context

Work effectively in a climate of ambiguity and changing priorities

Be Flexible

Incorporate feedback effectively

Deal positively with praise, setbacks and criticism

Understand, negotiate and balance diverse views and beliefs to reach workable solutions, particularly in multi-cultural environments



Manage Goals and Time

Set goals with tangible and intangible success criteria

Balance tactical (short-term) and strategic (long-term) goals

Utilize time and manage workload efficiently

Work Independently

Monitor, define, prioritize and complete tasks without direct oversight

Be Self-directed Learners

Go beyond basic mastery of skills and/or curriculum to explore and expand one’s own learning and opportunities to gain expertise

Demonstrate initiative to advance skill levels towards a professional level

Demonstrate commitment to learning as a lifelong process

Reflect critically on past experiences in order to inform future progress



Interact Effectively with Others

Know when it is appropriate to listen and when to speak

Conduct themselves in a respectable, professional manner

Work Effectively in Diverse Teams

Respect cultural differences and work effectively with people from a range of social and cultural backgrounds

Respond open-mindedly to different ideas and values

Leverage social and cultural differences to create new ideas and increase both innovation and quality of work



Manage Projects

Set and meet goals, even in the face of obstacles and competing pressure

Prioritize, plan and manage work to achieve the intended result

Produce Results

Demonstrate additional attributes associated with producing high quality products including the abilities to:

– Work positively and ethically

– Manage time and projects effectively

– Multi-task

– Participate actively, as well as be reliable and punctual

– Present oneself professionally and with proper etiquette

– Collaborate and cooperate effectively with teams

– Respect and appreciate team diversity

– Be accountable for results



Guide and Lead Others

Use interpersonal and problem-solving skills to influence and guide others toward a goal

Leverage strengths of others to accomplish a common goal

Inspire others to reach their very best via example and selflessnes

Demonstrate integrity and ethical behavior in using influence and power

Be Responsible to Others

Act responsibly with the interests of the larger community in mind