[photopress:The_Age.jpg,full,alignright]The Age in Australia is not a contentious newspaper. Not one to seek a row but it is, in Melbourne, the newspaper of record and is a force to be reckoned with. It has just published an article stating that the quality of university education in China is one of the great challenges. Partially it reads:
The Government spends more on education than ever before, but that spending has not kept pace with economic growth, so as a proportion of the economy, education spending has been almost static.
A 1993 target of spending 4 per cent of gross domestic product on education by 2000 remains unmet. It is now hoped that target will be met by 2010.
When it comes to science and technology, very few universities in China are comparable in quality to universities in Europe or the US. There is a handful of top institutions, then there is the rest, and the gap in between is immense. This gap means that raw numbers are misleading.
Gary Gereffi and Vivek Wadha at Duke University were intrigued by the commonly repeated assertion that only 70,000 engineers graduate from US universities each year, but that China produced 600,000 engineering graduates and India 350,000. When they took a closer look at the numbers and compared like with like, they found that the numbers of graduates from rigorous four-year engineering degree programs rose to 137,000 for the US but fell to 112,000 in respect of India and to 351,000 for China. The Chinese figures probably still exaggerate its standing because a large number are not engineering graduates in Western terms but more the calibre of car mechanics.
The full article is on The Age Internet site.
Source: The Age