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Chinese Scholar: Current Education System Does Not Nurture Student Creativity

China Youth Daily, the official newspaper of the Communist Youth League of China, published an article about Chinese students’ lack of aptitude for innovation. The paper interviewed the Chinese scholar, Zhang Xueji, director of the research center at the School of Chemical and Biological Engineering at the University of Science and Technology in Beijing. Zhang stated that more and more Chinese students are losing interest in innovation. When compared to college and graduate students in the U.S., they lag far behind in creativity skills.

Zhang told China Youth Daily that the talent for innovation is the scarcest resource for a country. Zhang listed a number of reasons that caused the lack of innovation consciousness and ability in the academic field of research in China. First, the transmissive style of teaching does not nurture an interest in creativity. Second, the existing assessment of the scientific and technological achievement process also needs to be changed. Zhang said that the system shouldn’t emphasize whether a research paper that a graduate student publishes during his graduate education meets a quota, but rather, whether the quality of the paper meets the requirement. This emphasis has resulted in a lack of original research projects. A third factor that Zhang brought up is the lack of trust between research fellows working for a company and those research fellows working for the college. The fact that both sides are afraid of potential risks presents a barrier to their ability to collaborate.

Source: China Youth Daily, June 15, 2014