Course code(s) and title(s):

IBBA 4010 Issues in Asian Business Study Trip, 
MGNT 4540 
Asian Business    

Department: Department of Management 

Subject area: International Business, Management, Issues in Asian Business, Asian Business  

Instructor: Dr. John Lai

Assistant Dean (Undergraduate Studies)

Director, MSc in Management (MiM)

Post-discussion notes 

Dr Lai stressed that internationalization is of great importance for students to perform better in a globalized workplace. Business school students are expected to possess cultural literacy which allows students not to look at things from a single, local perspective, but to act and think from multiple perspectives, internationally and cross-culturally. All graduates need to develop a de-nationalized sensitivity, for example, as managers, students need to take into account the effects of globalization, cross-cultural demographics, including global economic, political, social scenarios when they make decisions at corporation level. Business school graduates should also act as a catalyst and develop a dual-centric perspective. There are also skill sets which require students to respect the cultural differences and allow students to display a global mindedness during job interviews, not just excelling in their term papers but also know how to respond to changes and the ever-changing market trends. Dr Lai then provided teaching practices in School of Business which materialize the objectives and teaching believes of helping CUHK students developing an international perspective. These teaching practices can be found at both program level and course level.

Prof Lee shared her experience on designing a one-credit bearing course, Interprofessional Learning for Medication Safety (PHAR 2018), which started in 2018 to scale up and improve the inter-professional education (IPE) program. This summer course engages interdisciplinary cooperation to provide training workshops and outreach voluntary activities for university students and volunteers from secondary schools. The course is conducted in summer, but the outreach activities are spread over term time. The course is explicitly designed to nurture the students of Faculty of Medicine to develop a global citizen mindset and an ability to observe and find solutions for social problems locally and globally. This course objective matches the teaching philosophy and beliefs in delivering a course which allows students to develop a sense of global-mindedness and global citizenship. One of the expected learning outcomes is to enhance students’ understanding toward global citizenship and social enterprisingness. Upon completion of the course, students are expected to apply and make good use of the healthcare training to plan and establish health related strategies for the other population groups either in local or nearby regions.

A wonderful serenity has taken possession of my entire soul, like these sweet mornings of spring which I enjoy.

IoC at Program Level 

CUHK Business School and the Darla Moore School of Business at the University of South Carolina (USC) are together offering the International Business and Chinese Enterprise (IBCE) for undergraduate students interested in pursuing careers in international business with an emphasis on China and the United States. Students from the two business schools will share a number of courses and experiences together. They will have abundant opportunities to create and sustain cross-cultural relationships with classmates and professors in Hong Kong and the United States. Additionally, through coursework, internships, study trips and travel, they will be able to personally experience the impact of culture on business practices.

The program builds on the unparalleled access that CUHK offers to China and Asia, the strong Chinese language programs available there, and the outstanding professors and curriculum of the School. This is a "4+1" program. Upon completion of the 4-year undergraduate degree at CUHK, participating students will receive a bachelor’s degree awarded by CUHK (i.e. Bachelor of Business Administration). Eligible students shall continue the 1-year Master of International Business (MIB) at USC. Before graduation, IBCE students need to attempt the Computerized Oral Proficiency Assessment (COPA) organized by the Chinese Language Centre at CUHK or the Putonghua Shuiping Ceshi, and meet the required standards.  

IoC at Course Level 

MGNT4540 Asian Business 
When Dr Lai designed and conducted the MGNT 4540 Asian Business course, the student demographics were hugely diverse, with a range of more than 15 different nationalities. He thus assigned group work, mandating students to work with multi-national students to work on two projects. He also invited speakers from Asia who are leaders of state-owned companies or international corporations. The course covers hot topics including issues in Asian business industry featuring emerging, developing Asian countries like Thailand, Indonesia and Singapore. He also organized a self-funded study trip which lasted two days, taking students to Dongguan or Qianhai to explore the latest development in the Greater Bay Area. From the study trip, students would visit factories and companies in the area. They could understand local ways of doing business and become more respectful and understanding towards particular skillsets that the industry is practicing. Students would then write a reflective essay with a global and functional perspective. These, Dr Lai believed, are meaningful activities in which students could have hands-on experiences on the latest development in the real business world. The study trip was mostly well received with 50 out of 58 students participating and willing to pay HKD$1000 for the participation fee which covered accommodation and transportation.

Enablers of IoC 

Dr Lai asserted that three key enablers which make internationalization of curriculum possible: 1. Resources; 2. Commitment from students; and 3. Support from all levels at the university. Teachers can create more learning opportunities and activities which are highly international with sufficient funding and technical supports at both faculty and institutional levels. Student commitment is highly depending on the student demographics, but Dr Lai believed with adequate teacher encouragement and effort, implementation of internationalization of curriculum is highly possible and mostly necessary. Support from all levels will make implementation of an internationalized curriculum easier because with collaboration among teaching and administrative staff, an internationalized curriculum will be highly plausible and beneficial not only to the students but also to the sustainability of the program.    

Blockers of IoC 

Safety and other risks of organizing study trip can prohibit teaching staff from designing activities which require students travelling to nearby cities or countries. Funding is also a concern. Teachers will be hesitant to plan or design an internationalized curriculum if there is insufficient support from the faculty members.

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