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More to be expected in GSM's reformed "Economics"

Peking University, Aug. 12, 2014: Since the autumn of 2013, a seminar-involved education reform has launched in Guanghua School of Management (GSM) with its star course “Economics.”


With more communication and interaction during the process of case study and practical participation, it is believed that the learning effectives can be improved.


Small class teaching, or seminar teaching, is a universal phenomenon among top notch institutes. A feature of American undergraduate teaching, it plays a crucial role in cultivating creative intellectuals and promoting research-based teaching. Involved in the trend, Peking University started pilot projects to narrow the class in 2012. Integrated with the form of lectures and seminars, more emphasis had been laid on interaction other than traditional teaching methods.


“Economics” is among the fundamentally compulsory courses for GSM freshmen. With ten renowned senior professors from the Department of Applied Economics, it attracts over 200 students each year.


In the big class, fundamental principles are lectured by the all-star cast led by Dean Cai Hongbin. As for the small class, students are divided to groups of twenty, where they analyze the case or problems under the guide of a mentor. Thus, the basic principles of theoretical economic research and mathematical analysis taught in the lecture could be digested with more efficiency.


Compared with the past, the ten mentors have to shoulder more burdens, while closer relations with the students make it possible to achieve the truly “individualized cultivation.”


Comprehensive improvements, apart from those on knowledge and thoughts, are seen from the feedback of the students. They gradually get the ability of independent exploration and critical thinking.


In the future, the reform will further have an impact on the design, the apparatus and the evaluation of the course.



Written by: He Lingqi
Edited by: Arthars
Guanghua School of Management