Adventures in Pedagogy: The Trials and Tribulations of Teaching Common Law in China

Thomson Legal
Publication Type:
Journal Article
Legal Education Review, 2005, 15 (1&2), pp. 137 - 159
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In international corporate circles, the general impression is that China is the next economic giant of the 21st century. This perception now seems to apply to universities the world over. The Chinese market, once closed to the world, is now arguably one of the most lucrative opportunities in the global economy. One area that is increasingly drawing international interest is education. The nation has a significant number of excellent world-class universities. However, it is estimated that by 2010 there will be 17 million excess demands for higher education places than the Chinese tertiary educational system cannot meet. This high demand for overseas tertiary qualifications has been matched by an enthusiastic supply of courses by academic institutions from Australia, New Zealand, the UK and the US. Unfortunately, given the ever tightening budgetary constraints for academic institutions in these countries, the push to meet the demand from China is dictated more by financial considerations than any lofty ideals of the intellectual merits of academic globalisation. The financial imperatives in turn dictate the strategies adopted by the institutions in their effort to meet the demand. The situation has been exacerbated by the absence of any coherent research that explores the critical issues and the practical problems associated with learning and expected outcomes in an alien cultural context.
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