The Difficulties of Adapting from an Instruction Paradigm to a Learning Paradigm

Shaanxi Normal University

There are many differences between the Chinese and American educational systems, most notable being where they place their focus. China stresses an emphasis on achievement and high test scores above all else, demonstrating their use of the instruction paradigm. The instruction paradigm is a model of teaching in which the teachers have all the knowledge, […]

Teaching and Learning in China

China in 12 days

 The 1995 article, From Teaching to Learning – A New Paradigm for Undergraduate Education by Robert Barr and John Tagg, served as a resource and the bases of many class discussions.  It describes the shift from “providing instruction- teaching to producing learning” (Barr & Tagg, pg. 13).  The traditional form of instruction is noted as […]

The Joys of Learning the Micro Level Viewpoint: Interviewing Graduate Students in China and the U.S.

East China University in Shanghai

The Joys of Learning the Micro Level Viewpoint: Interviewing Graduate Students in China and the U.S.  As a former ESL teacher of international students, many of them Chinese, I experienced teaching students who had attended Chinese secondary schools.  I heard my Chinese students talk extensively about their secondary experiences: the teacher-focused classroom, the rote memorization, […]

“Learn, so as to instruct others; Act, to serve as an example to all.”


By J. Richelle Joe On a conference room wall at Beijing Normal University, there is a wall with the following motto written in Chinese characters: “Learn, so as to instruct others; Act, so as to serve as an example to all.” Although its meaning may be up for interpretation, there is something striking about this […]

Observations on Teaching and Learning in China

Leslie and I with students at Shaanxi Normal University. We interviewed them in the second half of sitting in on their Sociology of Higher Education class.

In interviewing students about teaching and learning, I was curious to see how practices and pedagogy used compared in the United States and China. Before arriving in China, I expected students there to tell me that teaching and learning was done completely through lecture, and that students were expected to be passive members of class […]

America vs. China vs. England

Students were very interested in what we had to say about our own education.

An introduction to the interviews conducted in both America and China Since I am a counseling student, my interests were quite a bit different from those of others. I have to be honest in saying I wasn’t as invested in the concept of teaching and learning as others were. I feel like my interviews in […]

Educational Interviews- Faculty and Student Perspectives (China and USA)


As I reflect on this trip to China, it reminds me of my first international trip some two decades ago. Like then, my goal for moving to London was rooted in learning, professional growth and development.  Although my primary objectives were framed in learning the operational structure of different healthcare systems, little did I know […]

Teaching and Learning in the U.S. and China – Jess Hench


Before the trip to China, I interviewed three people affiliated with the School of Education at the College of William and Mary.  Two professors and a student provided insight as to teaching and learning practices in the U.S., how internationalization impacts education, and the collaborative relationships between professors and students. In China, I observed presentations […]