Understanding China, One Blog at a Time

An American in China

American University Closes Chinese Campuses Due to Cheating All 400 Chinese Speaking Masters Students Involved

Posted by w_thames_the_d on August 14, 2010

This is a sad but telling story of education in China. When I came here, I too taught at a university where cheating was so rampant that I like many I knew gave up on education in China, they do not have the same values and beliefs and cheating is so rampant that it makes academia a farce. As I have stated, I have been told to change grades and when I did not do so, they were changed anyway. To me the idea of advanced learning in China is not a farce, but not too far from it. The credibility of htis place is horrible.
The story below talks about a US university who has learned this the hard way. Due to rampant cheating they are forcing students to take a comprehensive exam or get a tuition refund instead of their diplomas. The cheating Chinese are opting for the latter. How unfortunate that you cannot come to China and do business like you can in the rest of the world….


HACKETTSTOWN — Centenary College is closing its satellite business schools in China and Taiwan after discovering rampant cheating among local students, campus officials said.

The cheating was so extensive that the Hackettstown college is withholding degrees from all 400 Chinese-speaking students in its master’s of business administration programs in Beijing, Shanghai and Taiwan, said Debra Albanese, Centenary’s vice president for strategic advancement.

The students were told they have until the end of the month to decide whether to take a comprehensive exam to earn their degree or accept a full tuition refund So far, school officials said, most students have opted for the refund of their $1,200-to-$1,400 tuition.

“The college is extremely concerned with the welfare of the Chinese students involved in the program but must note that its review revealed evidence of widespread plagiarism, among other issues, at a level that ordinarily would have resulted in students’ immediate dismissal from the college,” Albanese said in a statement.

Centenary, a 3,000-student private college in Warren County, has offered its executive MBA degree in China since 2004. The college was among dozens of U.S. schools that flocked to the region after the Communist government began welcoming Western universities.

Centenary officials in New Jersey began investigating the school’s China and Taiwan programs in January 2009 at the request of Barbara-Jayne Lewthwaite shortly after she took over as president. After it discovered cheating problems, the college hired an international law firm and consulted with the Middle States Commission on Higher Education, its accrediting agency.

School officials said Joseph Linskey, who was appointed last year to a new position of Dean of International Programs, is coordinating Centenary’s withdrawal from China.

Before they can receive a tuition refund, students are required to sign a waiver in English and Chinese saying they will not sue the school or say anything to “harm the reputation of Centenary College,” according to a copy of the documents obtained by The Star-Ledger.

Centenary officials declined to discuss whether any college employees were fired because of the cheating.

Centenary isn’t the first college to run into problems regarding academic integrity in China, which has a long history of student-cheating scandals. Earlier this month, Beijing education officials launched an investigation into reports that hundreds of students at Beijing Open University had cheated on their final exams while teachers turned a blind eye, according to local news accounts.

Dozens of people have been arrested over the last few years for allegedly selling high-tech cheating devices, including wireless ear pieces and wristwatch-like receivers, to help students share answers on China’s high-stakes national college entrance exam.

U.S. test makers also have been cracking down on Chinese students cheating on the Graduate Management Admission Test, or GMAT, required for admission to business school. The Graduate Management Admission Council, which oversees the test, successfully sued several websites that Chinese students had used to swap the exam’s questions and answers.

“That was one example of the diligence we really pay to test security,” said Sam Silverstein, a Graduate Management Admission Council spokesman.

In the last five years, the number of Chinese students taking the business school admissions test has more than quadrupled to 16,500, Silverstein said. The country is now third in the world in the number of students taking the GMAT, behind only the United States and India.

“China is a very hot market for business schools,” Silverstein said.

While ending their China and Taiwan MBA programs, Centenary officials said they have no plans to stop expanding the college’s international reach. The college will continue to offer study abroad and exchange programs with schools around the world.

“Centenary College has had many long-standing successful relationships with international institutions in Asia, Europe and Canada that date back to the mid-1980s,” Albanese said. “We still continue to foster those relationships.”

3 Responses to “American University Closes Chinese Campuses Due to Cheating All 400 Chinese Speaking Masters Students Involved”

  1. Part of the problem is the tremendous importance placed on the college entrance exam. Doing well on this exam can make a big difference in career prospects, as do guanxi.

  2. Nice blog!!!…I hope i will get more good information from your post. Thanks my friend !

  3. Sprada Smart…

    […]American University Closes Chinese Campuses Due to Cheating All 400 Chinese Speaking Masters Students Involved « Understanding China, One Blog at a Time[…]…

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