Mathematical competence and basic competences in science and technology Mathematical competence and basic competences in science and technology

As defined in the Recommendation of the European Parliament and of the Council of 18 December 2006 on Key Competences for Lifelong Learning (2006/962/EC):

A. Mathematical competence is the ability to develop and apply mathematical thinking in order to solve a range of
problems in everyday situations. Building on a sound mastery of numeracy, the emphasis is on process and
activity, as well as knowledge. Mathematical competence involves, to different degrees, the ability and
willingness to use mathematical modes of thought (logical and spatial thinking) and presentation (formulas,
models, constructs, graphs, charts).

B. Competence in science refers to the ability and willingness to use the body of knowledge and methodology
employed to explain the natural world, in order to identify questions and to draw evidence-based conclusions.
Competence in technology is viewed as the application of that knowledge and methodology in response to
perceived human wants or needs. Competence in science and technology involves an understanding of the
changes caused by human activity and responsibility as an individual citizen.

Essential knowledge, skills and attitudes related to this competence:

A. Necessary knowledge in mathematics includes a sound knowledge of numbers, measures and structures, basic
operations and basic mathematical presentations, an understanding of mathematical terms and concepts, and an
awareness of the questions to which mathematics can offer answers.
An individual should have the skills to apply basic mathematical principles and processes in everyday contexts
at home and work, and to follow and assess chains of arguments. An individual should be able to reason
mathematically, understand mathematical proof and communicate in mathematical language, and to use
appropriate aids.
A positive attitude in mathematics is based on the respect of truth and willingness to look for reasons and to
assess their validity.

B. For science and technology, essential knowledge comprises the basic principles of the natural world,
fundamental scientific concepts, principles and methods, technology and technological products and processes,
as well as an understanding of the impact of science and technology on the natural world. These competences
should enable individuals to better understand the advances, limitations and risks of scientific theories,
applications and technology in societies at large (in relation to decision-making, values, moral questions, culture,

Skills include the ability to use and handle technological tools and machines as well as scientific data to achieve a
goal or to reach an evidence-based decision or conclusion. Individuals should also be able to recognise the
essential features of scientific inquiry and have the ability to communicate the conclusions and reasoning that
led to them.

Competence includes an attitude of critical appreciation and curiosity, an interest in ethical issues and respect for
both safety and sustainability, in particular as regards scientific and technological progress in relation to oneself,
family, community and global issues.