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Student Loans in China: Efficiency, Equity, and Social Justice (Emerging Perspectives on Education in China) [Kindle Edition]

Baoyan Cheng

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Book Description

In 1989, China started charging tuition on a very small scale at a number of universities as a result of the global trend of cost-recovery policies, thus ending the free higher education era in China. It was not until 1997 that all higher education institutions in China started charging tuition and fees. Both the expansion of higher education and the wide gap between income and tuition and fees have created an increasingly high proportion of students who are academically qualified but cannot afford to go to college. To address the problem of the increasing number of financially needy students, in 1999, China launched the pilot Government-subsidized Student Loan Program (GSSLP) in eight cities. This program was extended to full-time students at all of the 1,942 public higher education institutions in 2000, and has been undergoing revisions ever since, including major ones in 2004 and 2007. As of 2009, the number of financially needy students in China reached 5.27 million, accounting for 23.06 percent of the total enrollment of 22.85 million at higher education institutions in China. Behind those statistics are young people who suffer in many ways. This book provides multiple perspectives, namely, global, comparative, empirical, practical and philosophical ones, on the GSSLP, the largest financial aid program in current China. It not only provides information on financial aid policies, especially the GSSLP, in China, but also offers a comparative perspective by examining student loan programs in the United States and Australia, which are more mature and better developed. Using original dataset, the empirical and practical perspectives examine the effect of the GSSLP on students' behavior, and look into the different aspects of the GSSLP, including students' perceptions of and attitudes toward the program, as well as its implementation. In addition to these technical aspects of the GSSLP, this book also examines the larger concepts of equality and social justice from a philosophical perspective, and argues that education can potentially play a significant role in realizing true equality by changing the self-interest-maximizing social ethos into an egalitarianism-oriented social mentality.

Editorial Reviews


Dr. Cheng has produced a very well written and thoughtful analysis of the quest in China for the proper balance between the need for revenue (which has led the government to implement a meaningful tuition fee) and the imperative for enhancing access to higher education. She does this primarily through an analysis and her own empirical study of the Chinese experiments with student loan programs. The balance is complex: in no small measure due to the complexity of student loans and the difficulty of analyzing student college-going and college-completion behavior. Dr. Cheng incorporates valuable comparisons with the Australian and US student loan schemes, and incorporates a powerful analysis of the differences between Western and Asian concepts of social justice. (Bruce Johnstone, SUNY)

This volume adds significantly to the literature on educational finance in China. As the largest higher educational system in the world, how the Chinese approach issues such as equity and access, affordability of higher education and the tension between public and private goods will greatly inform others in the region facing similar challenges. Professor Cheng's book should be read by those in Chinese studies and educational policy alike. (John Hawkins, Professor Emeritus, Director, Center for International and Development Education (CIDE), UCLA)

Baoyan Cheng has written a highly novel, extremely readable and very engaging book. A very welcome addition to the growing comparative literature on student loans schemes world wide, it will be read widely by academics and practitioners in the field. But this book is much more than a fine technical appraisal of, and justification for, the largest student loans scheme in China, examined within a comparative global context. Adopting a "multi-perspective approach" and through a mixture of case studies, personal histories and a careful use of available data sources, the author opens a portal on many other aspects of higher education in China. Thus we are provided with an insightful discussion of differences in Western and Chinese concepts of equality and we learn at first hand of the severity of financial hardship faced by many students in China and of the severe constraints (not only financial) mitigating against access of the poor to higher education. I judge that this book will become a classic reference in the field. (Adrian Ziderman, Editor of International Journal of Manpower)

Cheng’s book is a compelling academic monograph concerning China’s student financial aid system. It makes a significant and original contribution to the field. It also outlines topics for more focused research, such as the long-term effects of the GSSLP, the effect of the GSSLP on access to college, and how students’ attitude towards loans and debts influence their borrowing behavior and life choices. In addition, through reading this book one also senses Cheng’s compassion for disadvantaged people. This research will play a very important role in helping the Chinese government improve its student loans schemes. More broadly, it may be instructive to researchers studying other developing countries facing similar social problems.

(The China Journal)

About the Author

Baoyan Cheng is assistant professor of comparative/international education at the University of Hawaii at Manoa.

Product Details

  • File Size: 426 KB
  • Print Length: 168 pages
  • Publisher: Lexington Books (March 24, 2011)
  • Sold by: Amazon Digital Services, Inc.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B004TA7Q40
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Enabled
  • Lending: Not Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #2,118,871 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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