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Running head: BUILDING A MODERN UNIVERISITY SYSTEM

Case Study in Higher Education


BUILDING A MODERN UNIVERSITY SYSTEM
Kirstie Harsha
Georgia Southern University
March 9, 2015

Case Study in Higher Education:

BUILDING A MODERN UNIVERSITY SYSTEM


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Building a Modern University System

For the assigned case study, I chose to use the article Building a Modern University
System to review. Working in the higher education industry led me to choose this article to
better understand consolidation of institutions and how modern university systems are built. As
of 2004 100+ million students were reported to attend a higher education institution worldwide.
China has 16 million of those students in their higher education system alone. The administration
of Chinas education system started implementing processes of consolidation that could
potentially change the way that the rest of the worlds higher education institutions operate in
2000. This makes me wonder if the United States plans to use similar plans for the consolidation
and joining of institutions.
BACKGROUND/ ISSUES OF THE CASE
The Chinese Central Government and Ministry of Education approved the consolidation
of Ji Lin University located in Chang Chun, the capital of Ji Lin Province, in 2000. The
consolidation of five institutions into one institution called for reform and readjustment of the
administrative structure of their higher education system. Each of the institutions has their own
form of administration causing the newly formed Ji Lin University to now have 5 separately
functioning, independent administrations. JLU must consolidate into one fully functioning,
centralized higher education administration that benefits all five campus locations. The article
highlights several factors that JLU must overcome to be successful: short span of merging, no
practical experience at hand to refer to, and lack of knowledge about the law for managing the
mega-scaled university. Jin Lin University must adhere to the current constitution and law of

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Jin Lin Province and China as a whole. Since the merger, Ji Lin University has been made into
the largest national university with all-round education programs and high academic standards.
Such major changes to Chinas higher education system have helped to modernize the country all
together. Thousands of bilingual Chinese students are studying abroad to gain education instead
of choosing to study in their home country. The development of the CPC Party Committee
shaped the being formation of Jin Lin University. The CPC set up legal basis and operational
basis for the OR to help transition into one modern institution. The OR has four main parts to its
plan: guiding ideology, essential principle, basic targets, and major contents. In the major
contents are to clarify power relations, improve the administrative structure, better the channel
for power exercise, reform the offices, personnel, and financial management, make sure the
managing mode of each campuss affairs, and reform the rear service (Lie & Shen, 2005).
ALTERNATIVE SOLUTIONS
The researched performed by the Chinese Central Government and Ministry of Education
was not sufficient in how they would combine so many universities at one time. At the time of
the consolidation, there may not have been as much research and implantation of a successful
consolidation as there is in todays society. There were many obstacles that Jin Lin University
must overcome to be a success. Although there were few examples in China, both Australia and
the United States of America have taken part in consolidations of universities and have been
successful. The idea of a successful combination of the five institutions came from Australia in
the late 1990s. I do not know how much China used the Australian consolidation model to use to
their benefit, but from the article, it did not seem like the Ministry of Education and the Chinese
Central Government used their example. The Chinese government had to play catch-up to the
consolidation and goals set forth.

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FACTORS AFFECTING THE SUCCESS OF THE ALTERNATIVE SOLUTION
Unfortunately with having campuses spread across the province of Ji Lin, there can be no
centralized administration for the university. The many administers did not have a single voice,
no unified power for the university to make decisions. Each operated as its own institution before
the creation of the CPC Party Committee of Jin Lin. The CPC Party Committee did eventually
create a successful administration for Jin Lin University. Currently in 2015, Georgia State
University (Atlanta, Georgia) and Georgia Perimeter College (Atlanta, Georgia) are becoming
one institution to be called Georgia State University. The new institution will be taking close to a
year to make all the necessary changes that are required for the joining of the institutions. I
would think that the new Georgia State University will face many of the same challenges that Jin
Lin University overcame. Georgia Perimeter Colleges five campus locations will combine with
Georgia State Universitys downtown Atlanta location to service all students much like the five
joining colleges did at Ji Lin University. The one thing that I think will be beneficial is that
Georgia State University will be taking 2015 to sort out potential problems. I think that if Ji Lin
University had taken some time before combining all the institutions, the transition would have
been smoother.
CONCLUSION
Jilin University has become the biggest university in China by its largest enrollment. As
of 2014, the enrollment at Jin Lin University was 60, 963 students (1,112 international, 39,360
undergraduate, and 21,603 graduate). Jilin University has become a leading national research
university under the direct jurisdiction of China's Ministry of Education. It offers the programs
covering 13 disciplinaries --philosophy, economics, law, education, literature, history, science,

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engineering, agriculture, medicine, management, military science and arts. It offers 124
undergraduate programs, 299 masters program, 237 doctoral programs and 41 post-doc
programs. (JinLin University). I would have to say that since the consolidation in 2000, the
Chinese higher education system has definitely become more modernized and paved the way for
other institutions to do the same.

REFERENCES

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Board of Regents Consolidation FAQ. (2015, January 6). Retrieved March 3, 2015, from
http://www.gsu.edu/2015/01/06/board-regents-consolidation-faq/.
Campus Locations. (n.d.). Retrieved March 3, 2015, from
http://www.gpc.edu/Facilities_and_Services/campuses.php3.
Consolidation Q&An With The President. (2015, January 6). Retrieved March 3, 2015,
from http://www.gsu.edu/2015/01/06/consolidation-qa-president/.
Jilin University. (n.d.). Retrieved March 3, 2015, from
http://en.jlu.edu.cn/University/SubpageInfoAction_getAll.aspx?spmSubPageName=About
Us&spmBlockNamw=JLU Overview.
Jilin University China University. (n.d.). Retrieved March 3, 2015, from
http://www.chinaeducenter.com/en/university/jilin.php.
Liu, S., & Shen, Y. (2005). Building a Modern University System -A Case Study Account
of Higher Education Reform in China. Australian Association for Research in Education.
University System Of Georgia Board Of Regents. (n.d.). Retrieved March 3, 2015, from
http://news.gsu.edu/2015/01/06/university-system-board-consolidates-georgia-state-georgiaperimeter/.