University of Massachusetts, Amherst
China's Modern Educational System and its Disparities
Can we close this gap?
In this thesis, I examine the evolution of China's system of education, from 1911 and the establishment of the Republic of China to Present-day China. Throughout the 20th century, China's educational system has evolved through three different political systems. First, during the era of the Republic of China, with the nation under the control of the Guomindang, education was limited to the intellectuals and wealthy until May 4th, 1919, with a movement creating a new system of education based on democratic republican ideals. After the Chinese Civil War during the Communist era, China's government, under Mao Zedong's leadership, from 1949 to 1978, worked to unify China under one single social class. Finally, from 1978 to the present, a movement opening China to the world and international markets has provoked a new educational policy preparing the Chinese students to the modern world the complexity of Chinese society in 2012.
Despite the reforms implemented by the Chinese government during the past decades,
there is a lack of equality across China and its regions, in terms of access to education and academic resources in relation to social status and location.
Comparing China to the United
States, despite its differences in structural and ideological educational philosophy, the two countries' educational systems are beginning, through baby steps, to influence each other.
The Chinese cultural schema of education is the abstract knowledge of the nature of education that is distributed among Chinese cultural members. This cultural knowledge emerges from thousands of years of interaction between the Chinese social need for developing harmony in a collective and stratified society, the Confucian philosophy of education and the political...