Similarities and Differences in American and Chinese University Education

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  • Title: Similarities and Differences in American and Chinese University Education
  • Author(s): Julia A. Martin
  • Publisher: Common Ground Research Networks
  • Collection: Common Ground Research Networks
  • Series: World Universities Forum
  • Journal Title: The Journal of the World Universities Forum
  • Keywords: Higher Education, University Education, Universities & Colleges, American Students, Chinese Students, China, United States, Socio-Cultural Factors, Cross-Cultural Differences, Learning Styles, Teaching Methods, University Funding, Performance Evaluation,
  • Volume: 3
  • Issue: 1
  • Year: 2010
  • ISSN: 1835-2030 (Print)
  • DOI: https://doi.org/10.18848/1835-2030/CGP/v03i01/59513
  • Citation: Martin, Julia A.. 2010. "Similarities and Differences in American and Chinese University Education." The Journal of the World Universities Forum 3 (1): 51-62. doi:10.18848/1835-2030/CGP/v03i01/59513.
  • Extent: 12 pages

Abstract

In the globalized world China and the United States increasingly exchange university students and collaborate in other ways. The United States hosts 23% of Chinese students who study abroad, sister universities abound, research labs are shared, and collaboration increases. This paper hopes to offer insight into basic similarities and differences between American and Chinese institutes of higher education. The university as an institution, culture, and teaching and learning styles will be compared and contrasted. The large increase in the numbers of Chinese graduates and the debate over Chinese science and engineering students outstripping American students will begin the discussion. Next, the very different university funding structure and the similar, yet different, method of faculty evaluation and educational quality will be addressed. Hofstede's cultural dimensions will be used to compare both U.S. and Chinese societies and generational cohorts will be used to explore how historical events shape beliefs and values. Last, the growing similarity in learning styles, the difficulty of changing teaching styles, and the disconnect between curriculum and workforce skills are addressed. These topics have been chosen to foster a greater understanding behind the growing number of connections between American and Chinese institutes of higher education.