Management Education at Guangdong University of Foreign Studies: History and Education Policy in Southern China
Shaw, Robert Keith, & Zhou, Ning. (2012). Management education at Guangdong University of Foreign Studies: history and education policy in Southern China. Paper presented at the Philosophy of Education Society of Australasia Conference, Taiwan.
15 Pages Posted: 25 Jun 2013
Date Written: December 17, 2012
The November 2012 change in Chinese leadership has implications for business education in PR China. Business and management education have been priorities in China for three decades, but now management urges university teachers to accept further challenges. Critical elements of business education are language learning, localisation, and globalisation. These continue as components of China’s growth strategy. What is new is a renewed emphasis on the orientation of the economy towards quality and the adoption of a goal in incomes policy (the reduction of the gap between rich and poor). China’s financial growth rates will inevitably fall and settle at figures more typical of advanced nations. Whilst this occurs, there is to be an intense emphasis on quality in the production of goods and the delivery of services. What, we ask, does this imply for Chinese tertiary education? The emphasis on quality will have a direct impact on the universities management practices and student support, but this is not the only implication of the new policy direction. An important aspect of this policy for universities is the implication that there will be an enhancement of the workforce. This paper reports on business education at Guangdong University of Foreign Studies. We reflect on the current purposes and potential development of courses and business degrees. The paper makes explicit the context of business education courses. This context involves national, provincial and university dimensions. These dimensions determine the goals of the university, business degrees, and course content. The paper reports on the congruence between the goals of the university and the students’ aspirations. Paramount in the management of Chinese tertiary education is the unity of national purpose. China will modernise, globalise, localise and accept quality as a new requirement. Goals set by the Government are serious directives, which university managers confront in purpose and in spirit. Finally, the paper advocates for several initiatives, which are consistent with the direction for development set by Chinese leadership. These relate to (1) a refinement of course objectives to focus on the development of skills, primarily those skills of research and innovative thinking; and (2) overcoming the hegemony of American management ideology through the production of Chinese textbooks.
Keywords: China, policy, globalisation, vocational education, business, management, quality, Guangdong
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