Outdated textbooks a nuisance

Updated: 2011-10-20 08:47

(China Daily)

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Participants at a recent China-Germany conference on higher education criticized the outdated textbooks used in Chinese universities. Since students study passively and teachers repeat what books say, China should improve the textbooks to catch up with the times, says an article in Qianjiang Evening News. Excerpts:

Media reports say some universities in Chongqing still use the textbooks edited in the 1990s with teachers using obsolete teaching techniques. A survey shows that the rate of outdated textbooks with repeating content is as high as 74 percent.

The outdated textbooks do not meet the real requirements of students. Even if they are updated in appearance, their contents reflect ossified thinking and lack of professional ethics.

Many a person has said that some university students do not have a serious attitude toward studies but only wants a diploma. But the main reason for the sad state of affairs is school education with outdated textbooks and teachers without a serious attitude toward life.

Such an attitude reflects some hidden rules that some universities and teachers still follow. It seems that today it is more important to be a leader or publish more papers (even if they are plagiarized) than a teacher.

This has created a wrong atmosphere in universities. Instead of teaching students how to prepare for real life, some professors just choose to add some of their own understandings to explain the contents of outdated textbooks, which will only lead to deteriorated university education.

(China Daily 10/20/2011 page9)