So far Mathematical Literacy means different things to different people in different countries. What seems to be a point of convergence is that some mathematical knowledge is necessary to solve some problems encountered in life. Do we need some form of mathematical literacy or some mathematics to be ale to interact with problems that invove mathematics in life? It is on the basis of this that defining Mathematical Literacy would depend on its utilitarian value one attaches to the subject. The following are different names used around the world to refer to the subject: Quantitative Mathematics, Mathemacy, Numerical Literacy, etc.

In South Africa the word Mathematical Literacy is used to refer to the subjrct that deals with everyday problems that require the use of mathematics.