University of Oulu

Lauri Palsa & Pekka Mertala (2019) Multiliteracies in local curricula: conceptual contextualizations of transversal competence in the finnish curricular framework, Nordic Journal of Studies in Educational Policy, 5:2, 114-126, DOI: 10.1080/20020317.2019.1635845

Multiliteracies in local curricula : conceptual contextualizations of transversal competence in the finnish curricular framework

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Author: Palsa, Lauri1,2; Mertala, Pekka3
Organizations: 1Department for Media Education and Audiovisual Media, National Audiovisual Institute, Helsinki, Finland
2Faculty of Education, University of Lapland, Rovaniemi, Finland
3Faculty of Education, University of Oulu, Oulu, Finland
Format: article
Version: published version
Access: open
Online Access: PDF Full Text (PDF, 1.5 MB)
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Language: English
Published: Informa, 2019
Publish Date: 2019-07-08


The international trend of competency-based curricula is evident in the curricular framework in Finland. In the latest effort of curricular reform, seven transversal competencies were introduced to the Finnish educational system. In this article, we analyse the ways in which multiliteracy as a transversal competency, presented in the Core Curriculum for Basic Education in Finland (2014), has been conceptually contextualized in local curricula. The study revealed that in most local curricula, the definition of multiliteracy was not contextualized within local settings. For the curricula in which contextualizations took place, most conceptual contextualizations focused on the level of practice (85%), level of definition (63%) and level of rationale (21%). Conceptual contextualizations were made through emphases, specifications, descriptions and expansions. The article contributes by highlighting the ways in which broadly defined competencies can be contextualized to local settings, offering new knowledge among growing extant literature on competency-based curricula. In addition to the contextualization process, the present study offers new insights into the ways in which the concept of multiliteracy can be understood.

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Series: Nordic journal of studies in educational policy
ISSN: 2002-0317
ISSN-E: 2002-0317
ISSN-L: 2002-0317
Volume: 5
Issue: 2
Pages: 114 - 126
DOI: 10.1080/20020317.2019.1635845
Type of Publication: A1 Journal article – refereed
Field of Science: 516 Educational sciences
Copyright information: © 2019 The Author(s). Published by Informa UK Limited, trading as Taylor & Francis Group. This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial License (, which permits unrestricted non-commercial use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.