On Monday 26th January, the UCL IOE Confucius Institute hosted the first Schools and Universities Day at the UCL Institute of Education. This event created an opportunity for school teachers to discuss with universities about the progression of pupils studying Mandarin Chinese from school to university, as well as giving students a chance to discover more about Chinese Studies choices at university.
The morning provided small focus group discussions between a wide variety of university representatives and schools, with very interesting debates ranging from when to teach stroke order, to different entry levels for students, to the different types of courses that can be applied for.
“It was useful to meet with other Chinese teachers to compare challenges we face, and then talk to universities to see what they are now looking for in applicants/ what they can offer for non-ab initio applicants” Ruari Garvey, Oundle School
“It is very good to meet colleagues in schools in person, so that I understand the opportunities and challenges we face much better” Dr Qianlan Wu, University of Nottingham
The afternoon saw pupils from a wide variety of schools arriving to talk to the different universities, to gain a clearer idea of options open to them. This was a great success, with students commenting on the usefulness of being able to speak directly to a variety of universities, and consider some new options they hadn’t thought of previously.
“talking to the universities gave me a better understanding of my options and will help me to make the right choice”
“being able to talk to the universities and find out more about the courses. I had never thought about some of these universities before today.”
With over 130 attendees, the event helped develop the dialogue between teachers, pupils and universities, with those present agreeing it was extremely worthwhile attending, and looking forward to it becoming an annual event.