Educators and politicians in Taiwan, Hong Kong, Japan and Korea expound the necessity for their East Asian school systems to become more like those in the West. They complain that there is too much rote learning, uniformity, and standardization and too little emphasis on creativity, diversity, and problem solving. In addition, competition is fierce for scarce places in elite schools and universities, leading to unfulfilled ambitions and wastage of talent among the high proportions of young people failing to gain entry. Meanwhile, their counterparts in North America, Australia, and Great Britain look in the reverse direction to these same East Asian countries and wonder what they can learn from the superior academic results of East Asian students on International Achievement Tests in mathematics and science (Atkin & Black, 1997). Copyright © 2002 by Routledge.