China in Transformation

Project Director

Peter Yang

Associate Professor of German and Chinese, Department of Modern Languages and Literatures

International Collaborators

Wenjun Xuan

East China University of Political Science and Law

Jianwei Wu

Tongji University

Grace Shou

Tongji University

PROJECT DESCRIPTION

This project promoted collaboration with Chinese business professors and Chinese student peers in two SAGES courses, “China in Transformation” (USSO 285P) and “China in Modernization” (FSSO 122). In Spring 2009, Professor Wenjun Xuan, Dean of the business school at East China University of Political Science and Law, visited CWRU for one week, during which time he taught classes and gave a public lecture. In addition, CWRU students connected with their Chinese peers through email to learn about the impact of China’s economic transformation and its role in a globalized society. (Plans for videoconferencing could not be carried out because of incompatibilities between the two universities’ systems.) The email exchanges proved to be very productive. Students communicated on their own time, thus working around the twelve-hour time difference.

PROJECT OUTCOMES

This project allowed undergraduate students to launch and continue international collaborations and friendships. It also helped created student interest in other China-related and international programs at CWRU. Students learned first-hand from peers living and studying in China, acquiring knowledge far beyond what their textbooks could tell them. Because of the rapid changes in China, textbooks can be limited and outdated. The new perspectives that the students acquired enhanced discussion both in the classroom and on Blackboard. Some students established ongoing friendships with their Chinese peers.

FACT SHEET

Total funding: $10,450

Funding supported Professor Yang’s advance trip to China to consult with collaborators and plan their participation in the courses. It also funded Professor Xuan’s visit to CWRU, including costs associated with his public lecture.

Peter Yang

Peter Yang

Associate Professor of German and Chinese, Department of Modern Languages and Literatures
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