Understanding China, One Blog at a Time

An American in China

Posts Tagged ‘China education’

Keeping the Good Stuff- Chinese Profs Hoard all the Good Books

Posted by w_thames_the_d on March 28, 2010


In the west, some students will resort to all kinds of trickery, including hiding or mutilating important books that others may need. The reason is that many classes grade on the ‘curve’ and only so many people can get A’s B’s etc. In China, the profs will hide the best books, or keep them to themselves. I think the reason is that in China. the prof is supposed to know more than anyone else, so it is a defense mechanism.

Posted in Cultural oddities | Tagged: | 1 Comment »

Chinese Poor Universities to Close Down in The Future

Posted by w_thames_the_d on March 24, 2010


WTF? This article says that China’s population base is declining, and the tendency of suitable higher education-age population will not support some universities. In addition, quality problems still exist disallowing the desire of foreigners to attend many Chinese universities.

Lets look at this, yes the one child policy is having an effect, but remember, universities in China just started back up about 25 years ago after the long hiatus due to the cultural revolution (all higher education basically stopped from 1965 to about 1980 and slowly began to open again after that). And when they started back up, it was like a trickle not spurt- thus it is not as if China has tens of thousands of universities (which it should on a comparative basis- due to population). S0,  when compared to the USA, they do not have an exorbitant amount of universities, the only conclusion I can draw is that they are not increasing the population of people who can attend collge.

“With the decline of China’s population base and the descendant tendency of suitable higher education-age population, some private-run universities will face fierce competition on recruitment and are likely to shut down in the next 10 years,” said Gu Hailiang, president of Wuhan University and NPC deputy, according to sina.com.

He quotes statistics from the education bureau showing the number of students taking the 2010 national higher-education entrance exam dropping by 20% from the previous year in Beijing. In Shanghai, the number of people taking the college entrance examination has fallen for three consecutive years.

In addition, China’s aging population will grow tremendously along with the continued implementation of family planning, which will worsen the situation.

“The reduced number of people going to college will add competition among universities including private ones, and this may result in closure for some private universities.”

Posted in China Fact, Cultural oddities, News From China- Whats hot | Tagged: , | Leave a Comment »

Improving Quality Education…- or Well Just Forget That

Posted by w_thames_the_d on December 13, 2009


This is rich. Under the auspices of closing some gap in opportunities in chinese education, the government in  connection with Peking University has implemented a new master plan. It purports to start a ” a pilot program aimed at improving the country’s university entrance system.”

The article from the China Daily states that under the new and improved system, Headmasters of schools (Principals) have the ability to recommend students to study at University of Peking, without taking entrance exams, but just on the word of the school headmaster! And this will improve education how…(just to explain, entry into Chinese universities is fierce, the parents begin preparing them from the age of 4 or so. They are taught special skills all in the hopes of being able to attend Tshinghua, PKU, or Remnin University).

Not to belittle the country, but I have a few observations. One is that entrance exams are set up to ensure that the most intellectually talented actually enter the top-notch schools.  Schmidt, Hunter and Ones, have campaigned about the veracity of using such measures. In the states we have taken to using other factors that supposedly narrow some gaps that exist in entrance procedures, but just allowing students to waltz in all on the word of a high school principal, doesn’t makes sense even in an alternate universe. At least some schools would say they are attempting to narrow some divide in minority groups, but China already gives ten points to all minorities in college entrance exams-this doesn’t add up.  I get the premise but just have to shake my head about this one.

In a country so rife with corruption, doesnt this seem to be actually taking that to the next level, as if to say ‘hey we don’t really need to hide this anymore, we will do things our way’.

The really sad part of this is my second point and that is that this type of sponsorship by some supposed expert just does not work in this country. It actually reminds me of the milk scandal just around the time of the olympics. The company that produced the tainted milk, Sanlu Group, was actually on a list of ‘trusted companies’ that didn’t have to undergo quality inspections as other ‘less trusted’ companies did. Let me reiterate, Sanlu Group, the company that produced toxic milk was freed from that pesky need to be subjected to routine tests for product quality as it was put on a governmental list of most trusted companies. See hwere I am going here…

Tests, rules, regulations serve a purpose, we don’t always care for them, but as we have learned or should have learned with Sanlu, they are a necessary evil. I just wonder what the situation will be in academia here if this sort of thing will be allowed to continue.

Posted in Counterfeits and such, Cultural oddities, Let me educate you..., Product Quality, Ranting in general | Tagged: , , , , , | 4 Comments »