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Xian Jiaotong - Liverpool University - any information?
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Sallyman



Joined: 07 Nov 2007
Posts: 7

PostPosted: Mon Nov 12, 2007 3:48 am    Post subject: Xian Jiaotong - Liverpool University - any information? Reply with quote

Hi, I just found a University in Suzhou called XJTLU and they are hiring, and didn't find anything about it on here, except some old stuff about Suzhou Industrial Park.

Does anyone work there that can tell me about the place? How are the teachers and students? Is the location ok?

Thanks.
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johnchina



Joined: 24 Apr 2006
Posts: 816

PostPosted: Mon Nov 12, 2007 4:47 am    Post subject: none Reply with quote

Liverpool Uni seems to be entering into partnerships with Chinese unis/schools in order to get Chinese people into Liverpool Uni.

The pay is very good, but remember that you're basically going to be teaching a bunch of kids who have rich parents but failed to get into a Chinese uni.

They believe that getting a British uni education is as simple as buying a chocolate bar - go in, pay, get your paper. And who knows? - they are probably right!
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Sallyman



Joined: 07 Nov 2007
Posts: 7

PostPosted: Tue Nov 13, 2007 5:33 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks,
I know a bit about the situation in China, I was just wondering about this specific University.

Isn't it strange that education can be seen as a product you buy off the shelf? I guess Paulo Freire hasn't made it to China yet.
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therock



Joined: 31 Jul 2005
Posts: 1266
Location: China

PostPosted: Tue Nov 13, 2007 6:54 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I do recall someone posted a negative reivew of this school a few months ago. Apparently it's in the middle of nowhere and the managment is poor. Do another search and you might be able to find it. If they are hiring for an immediate start then that is a red flag sign. As the other poster said the students will be from rich families so don't expect them to be motivated and eager to learn.
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Kurochan



Joined: 01 Mar 2003
Posts: 944
Location: China

PostPosted: Wed Nov 14, 2007 5:45 am    Post subject: It really is in the middle of nowhere. Reply with quote

Hi --

I went out there to check out the HKU Space Suzhou campus, and the Xian Jiaotong/U. Liverpool university is right across the street.

It really IS in the middle of nowhere. Like, you'll have to travel 15 minutes to get to the nearest supermarket (and I mean the nearest Chinese supermarket, not Carrefour or anything). There is only one bus that goes from that area to central Suzhou. It takes about an hour, and stops at 9:00. A taxi from the city to the campus would take about 100 RMB.

I heard that there were six foreign English teachers at XJ/UL, and that three of them quit midway through the year. There was just a lot of dissatisfaction with teaching conditions. Another poster here complained that although students were initially told they would all be going to England to finish their degree after two years, it was turning out that many of them would not be allowed to go after all, at least not without paying school leaders a substantial bribe. Sounds like a student riot waiting to happen.

If you don't care about that stuff, though, salaries are REALLY high. I think it'd just be a miserable experience working there.
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Sallyman



Joined: 07 Nov 2007
Posts: 7

PostPosted: Sat Dec 15, 2007 1:44 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I finally managed to email a teacher at XJTLU, and I learned several things.

1. Kurochan: the area is built up now more and has a supermarket and places to eat and shops. Buses run regularly and taxis are only RMB 50 into town.

2. The bad news is that the teacher I emailed says no one there is happy. It seems that a bunch of teachers quit last year, and a bunch quit this year too. It sounds like an English First school.

The only problem I have is the money. It's a LOT of money. I mean, 20 hours a week is a lot of teaching, but isn't the money worth it? I've taught overseas before, and this is the best salary I've seen in a while.

What do YOU think? Money over happiness?
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been_there



Joined: 28 Oct 2003
Posts: 284
Location: 127.0.0.1

PostPosted: Sat Dec 15, 2007 1:53 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Happiness Schmapiness: What ever happened to professional development?

The first thing I ask myself about a new job is: Will I be able to get a BETTER job AFTER this job?

What kind of development opportunities do they offer? Can you take classes at Liverpool? Will they sponsor your research? What about promotions? Can you move on to work at Liverpool?

Look to the future. What's your 5-year plan?
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vikuk



Joined: 23 May 2007
Posts: 1842

PostPosted: Sat Dec 15, 2007 2:18 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

There was a huge thread on this generated by some of last years displeased teachers - the whole thread was erased.
The thread also included a post from a reasearcher in the UK who was studying the quality aspects surrounding these kind of academic joint ventures.
There was a lot of talk about how the quality of the course fell a long way off anything FT's ever expected from the university of Liverpool - and that applied to FT's, students and academic standards. I speculate that the whole thread - and on going argument - ruffled so many feathers that Dave's were persuaded somehow and decided to delete the thread (otherwise they could have just locked it as per normal proceedure) - which should tell readers something Idea
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kev7161



Joined: 06 Feb 2004
Posts: 5782
Location: Suzhou, China

PostPosted: Sat Dec 15, 2007 8:17 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hey, that incredibly high salary should be able to offset the 100 (or 50) rmb taxi rides, yes? Sorry, I have no other input. I wonder how isolated it must be considering that SIP is not really and truly all that big (and it's mostly clean there to boot!). Besides grocery shopping, there's not a whole lot to do in town. If you want to go out drinking every night, there actually are some nightclubs and bars in SIP. There're plenty of restaurants of all sorts - - The Rainbow Walk by the lake for example. The lake itself is nice to visit on warm/cool spring or autumn afternoons. Maybe I'm on the wrong side of town? Naw, the SND is pretty cool.
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SnoopBot



Joined: 21 Jun 2007
Posts: 740
Location: USA

PostPosted: Fri Dec 21, 2007 10:46 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

20 hours are typical now for most universities in Beijing (and other big cities) and the pay is not what I would classify as high.

You will not get much professional development at 99.9% of the institutions in China. You can attempt to master the language, which can be considered a plus for future employment prospects.

If you have decent qualifications and want to grow professionally in the TESOL or academic field I would use the isolation aspect of this position to do research, write a book, and publish articles.

That is what I did my first year in Beijing.

Just remember, you can find the same level of dissatisfaction, hours, and isolation for a lot lower salary.

My advice would be to go for it, at least you be paid for it.
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SnoopBot



Joined: 21 Jun 2007
Posts: 740
Location: USA

PostPosted: Sat Dec 22, 2007 2:45 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I just looked at this institution's web page.

Min qualifications for subject areas are a: PhD

Most of the PhD’s are CS or EE as this institution has technical-based subjects.

For Language-Arts (TESOL) min requirements are MA Ed in Applied Linguistics or MA ED in TESOL plus experience. I will add it looks like those bogus online "get your MA degree in less than 1-year type degrees are not accepted."


They seem to prefer those that come from an engineering background at the M.Ed level to assist in the development of Subject Area Language preparation.

My questions now are:

1. How many of these positions are they willing to drop the qualification requirements to get a REAL PhD professor with an EE?

2. How many of their staff TESOL teachers have an EE or CS undergraduate degree. How many have the preferred experience level and a MA Ed in TESOL or Applied Linguistics?

Are they getting the required preferred staff, is there a high turnover rate, what is going on with the teacher/staff dissatisfaction.

They should have the best people per their own requirements and the pay level is good enough to attract the cream of the TESOL teaching groups in China.

Something else is going on with this big picture.

Any guesses.
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SnoopBot



Joined: 21 Jun 2007
Posts: 740
Location: USA

PostPosted: Wed Feb 06, 2008 3:21 am    Post subject: Re: XJTLU Reply with quote

stern9 wrote:
There is some good advice in this thread regarding this employer, and I'll do my best to restrain myself so the moderators let this post (and thread) stand.

Contact several teachers there independently before deciding anything. Consider that there were some very bitter comments online about XJT/U in the past that were censored. Look at staff profiles and ask yourself some questions.

I work there and I'm willing to take a pay cut to get out; and I hope the moderators will let this stand. It's taken me a lot of discipline to keep the misery of a lost year to myself....


Stern, do you mind if I PM you for further details.
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markfjcoyle



Joined: 25 Nov 2007
Posts: 3
Location: Suzhou

PostPosted: Wed Feb 13, 2008 10:17 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Yeah,
I work there and I'm reasonable happy. I am on the bottom of the ladder, having just a wee Trinity Diploma! Sad
There are those with problems with the management and others who complain about the area. Is there a place where everyone is happy? Shocked I do say that there are serious problems, and some complaints are serious.
You get paid on time, and handsomely even on my lowly rung Sad , there ARE good chances for promotion (not if you constantly complain thou Rolling Eyes ), and the whole area is developing very fast.

Laughing I laughed when i read it is 100RMB to town and there are no buses! Well there are about 4 buses to town and it is 25RMB to the centre of the SIP (with bars and hundreds of restaurants). There are more and more supermarkets and even a great Papa Franco bread shop. Very Happy
To check up look on this look at Blue Marlin restaurant, Yumways and Sherpa's delivery services. There is a hugely over-priced LiGongDi area with bars and restaurants- but I prefer the Irish bar in town and restaurants like the ones on SingDu Plaza (Cafe Rosa/Mister Pizza etc) or Papa Johns area. Laughing

I speak Chinese pretty well and have bought my own apartment SIP- I go to work each morning on the bus (15min). You can rent your own apartment in the SIP for about 2-4k a month (depends what you want to live in!!). We recently started our own staff football team and a squash group (at the nearby sports facilities). We have ample holidays to go home and are in discussions on the staff development (studying MA's or short courses, studying the students from different provinces, etc).

There are those who do IELTS training and work every weekend with no breaks, some travel to Shanghai each weekend, others spend their lives inside complaining about the cold/management. Sometimes their complaints are more than valid too. Embarassed
However, I really hope that the loud disgruntled ones dont put off other serious teachers from applying. There is lots of opportunities for those who work in a constructive mentality and I hope to be working with you soon.
I guess what I am saying is... we have issues to deal with, but it is a new University and exciting for us to build and develop.
Life here is what you make of it.
That is my two fen worth and I hope that it was worth me registaring for Dave's just to write this!
Laughing
Mark
Notice I do not hide my name- so you can contact me freely! Cool
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Roger Bishop



Joined: 14 Feb 2008
Posts: 1

PostPosted: Thu Feb 14, 2008 2:22 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Specific to XJTLU I noticed that one guy said that he had purchased his own apartment close to the uni. Does anyone know if these apts have heating and a/c? Whats the cost +/- of purchasing a 2 br unit?
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markfjcoyle



Joined: 25 Nov 2007
Posts: 3
Location: Suzhou

PostPosted: Fri Feb 15, 2008 2:35 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

well there are a few options at the uni-
1. rent one of the teachers block 2400yuan a month, fairly nice a bit cold and the AC is a bit weak.
2. buy one near the uni and fit it up yourself (see costs of AC below). the cost is about 4-5k a square metre but they wont be ready til next year.
3. rent one in the centre of SIP for 3-4k and have good AC etc according to what you choose/pay for!
4.buy your own one in the SIP area for about 7-12K a sq metre!

AC machines are cheap in comparison a 3 'p' machine is the biggest standing AC machine on the market and we got a brand name for 7k. The ones on the wall have a max 2'p' which go for about 2-5k depending on the brand.

I did option 4.
Most teachers do option 1.
But the uni has put classes from 9-5 weekdays only- so option 3 and 4 are easy enough (bus to work).
BR
Mark
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