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Educational Practices Abroad

China

The HE system in China has undergone wide ranging changes and vast expansion since the mid 1990s, differing rates of change mean that conditions may vary significantly between provinces or individual institutions.

A fuller picture of the undergraduate experience in China can be found in the China report and in the China presentation


Associated materials:

Workshop Notes

Worksheet 3: Viewing Guide

 

The key issues that emerge from this research are:

This is a picture of the results of a particular piece of research which concentrated on universities in the coastal mega-cities of Beijing, Shanghai and Guangzhou. However, it suggests important implications for how we teach international postgraduate students. The limited time available on masters programmes particularly to help international students develop appropriate academic abilities and attitudes suggests that programmes need to be carefully designed with the needs of these students in mind.

What follows is a list of questions which can act as a checklist for auditing existing programmes or in planning new provision:

  1. What assumptions about academic skills are built into this programme?
    • Students are used to gaining information from reading from textbooks, journals, academic texts, professional journalism
    • Students have the skills to evaluate the quality of arguments and evidence in the materials they read
    • At a conceptual level students understand the conventions of academic debate and argument, and how their own essays and dissertations need to conform to those conventions
    • At a practical level, students understand how to read academic writing, using contents pages, indexes, and discrimination in selection of text
    • Students are clear about what they can expect and not expect from the academics who teach them
  2. Are opportunities to develop the above skills and knowledge built incrementally into the design of the overall programme and/or of courses within it?
  3. Are resources and facilities (eg a student study support centre) available to assist students in developing these areas?
  4. Are there opportunities for students from different cultures to contribute their knowledge and experience to the programme, rather than being viewed only as problematic and exceptional?

 

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