Innovation in the Liberal Arts and Sciences in China: Six Recommendations to Shape the Future

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GE Lecture

Innovation in the Liberal Arts and Sciences in China:
Six Recommendations to Shape the Future


In the last decade, Mainland China and Hong Kong have witnessed significant growth in university programs and schools that emphasize the liberal arts and sciences. There are, however, significant obstacles that impede this growth. Obstacles include general confusion over the meaning of the liberal arts; doubts about its value and relevance; the low quality and limited reach of current offerings; a lack of qualified faculty; formal metrics and incentives that hamper educational innovation; bureaucratic resistance; difficulties in scaling programs; the need for new ways of teaching about Chinese, Western, and other cultures, traditions, and values; and the fact that Mainland Chinese institutions are still overseen by important political forces that are ambivalent about the virtues of liberal arts and sciences education for Chinese university students.


This talk highlights six key recommendations to overcome these obstacles and to realize the potential for the liberal arts and sciences in China. These recommendations emerged from a gathering of university leaders and scholars at Duke Kunshan University (DKU) in June, 2017 and are contained in the report released in November, 2017: make general education matter; invest in interdisciplinary integration; focus on faculty incentives and development; embrace innovative pedagogy; scale quality programs; and study multiple traditions.


Date: 17thNovember , 2017 (Friday)

Time: 12:30 – 2:00pm
Light lunch will be provided

Venue: ACC209, 2/F, Jockey Club Academic Community Centre, Baptist University Road Campus


All staff are welcome!


Biography of our Honorable Speaker

 Dr. Noah Pickus
Associate Provost and Senior Advisor to the Provost, Duke University
Dean of Undergraduate Curricular Affairs and Faculty Development, Duke Kunshan University


Dr. Pickus was the Nannerl O. Keohane Director of the Kenan Institute for Ethics at Duke University and the founding Director of the Institute for Emerging Issues at NC State University. At Duke, he focuses on strategic planning, learning innovation, and policy engagement and co-authored Duke’s new Strategic Plan: Together Duke. At DKU, he led the design of an innovative, interdisciplinary, and problem-based undergraduate curriculum and is responsible for hiring a new faculty, implementing the curriculum, and developing innovative pedagogical approaches. He has taught at Middlebury College and in China and Israel. He was an American Council on Education Fellow at Franklin & Marshall College and is currently a lead curriculum designer for the Arizona State University-Georgetown University Academy for Innovation in Higher Education Leadership.


For enquiries, please contact Miss Ada Chan at or 3411 2106.


Presentation Slides of Dr. Noah Pickuss