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					               Central Connecticut State University
                   Department of Geography
                                   Geography 459
                        Field Studies in Regional Geography

                                               China 2009

           Syllabus & Academic Requirements
Dr. Xiaoping Shen                                                              Dr. Timothy Rickard
Professor                                                                      Emeritus Professor
Department of Geography                                                        Department of Geography
CCSU                                                                           CCSU
New Britain, CT 06050-4010                                                     New Britain, CT 06050-4010
(860) 832-2794                                                                 (860) 832-2126
Shenx@ccsu.edu                                                                 Rickard@ccsu.edu


“China field study” is an intensive, 17 days educational program abroad that examines the forces
behind the making of the physical and human landscapes of vast China. It is available for either
three or six credit hours.

The program will begin in modern, dynamic Shanghai where active industrial restructuring and
planning respect also the preservation of Chinese traditional culture. In Xi’an we will visit the
Terracotta Warriors and other important sites in China’s historical capital. Moving along the Silk
Road, we will enjoy the hospitality of our sister university in Lanzhou. Then, we will visit
Dunhuang, site of the Buddhist cave art and Yadan National Geologic Park experiencing the
desert of western China. Finally in Beijing, the Great Wall, Forbidden City and Ming Tombs
contrast with modern urban development including the Olympic facilities.

We will explore the unique physical and cultural landscapes, ancient and modern city centers,
traditional music and art, and the regional variations from north to south and also east to west.
Discussions with eminent Chinese geographers will emphasize the economic development and
the changing rural and urban landscape.


This program is intended to explore a number of themes. These relate to the specialties of the
faculty involved. Students may also explore other themes based on their personal interests.
The Cities in China        Physical landscapes            Regional development
Rural Landscapes           Vegetation & Agriculture       Chinese Life and Culture
Historical geography       Tourism                        Economic Development


The instructors for the program are Dr. Xiaoping Shen and Dr. Timothy Rickard, both from the
CCSU Department of Geography.

Dr. Xiaoping Shen was born in China and received her B.Sc. and M.Sc. degree in geography
from Beijing Normal University. She was a lecturer (equivalent to assistant professor) at Beijing
Normal University for three years before she went to Canada for her PhD program. She has
traveled around China extensively as a faculty, a student and a tourist, and has visited over three
quarters of China. Her specialties are in economic geography of China and GIS. She has
published more than twenty articles about China's economic development and regional variations
both in English and Chinese.

Dr. Timothy Rickard brings a different set of experiences and interests to the program. Recipient
of CCSU’s Distinguished Service Award, he has lost count of the number of times that he has
traveled around the world. He has led student groups to many regions in the world for more than
twenty years. He has visited East Asia eight times including two visits to China with students. His
areas of specialization are human and economic geography, especially rural land use planning and
sustainable rural development.

COURSE REQUIREMENTS-For 3 credit hours.

1) Orientation sessions - A mandatory 2-hour orientation session will be held on Friday, the 15th
         of May at 10 a.m. in DiLoreto Hall Room 311 (the Cartography Lab). At the meeting
         we will discuss how to prepare for the trip, complete paperwork required by the
         University, review the course academic requirements, tell you about the Coursepack, and
         provide some advice for program participants. We will have another two hours
         orientation session on Monday, May 25th at 9 a.m. in DiLoreto Hall Room 311. At that
         meeting we will introduce geography of China and the cities where we are going to visit.
         We will distribute your airplane tickets and answer any last-minute questions you might
   Post trip session: a dinner gathering at time to be announced.

2) Participation - As with all classes, students learn best when they are active participants
        in their education. Students should be active participants in all course activities.

3) Pre-trip assignments – a news summary on what is happening in China.

4) Annotated photographic record –You are required to select 30 or more photos (2-4 per day)
       from your China trip photo collection and compile them into a photo journal album. Write
       an introduction (about 200-300 words) for your photo journal album. Then select one of the
       places we visit each day for a written description with photograph(s). Detailed guidelines
       will be provided.

5) A fieldwork report of your cultural industrial district in Shanghai (two typed pages with minimum
         5 photos). Detailed guidelines will be provided.
Due date: The annotated photographic record and fieldwork report are due by Monday, August
      24th, 2009.

COURSE REQUIREMENTS - For 6 credit hours.

1) All the requirements for three credits as above.

2) Long Research Paper - All students enrolled for six credits will also be required to research
       and write a major paper. The subject matter of the paper may deviate slightly from the
       themes of the program, but the topic must be approved by one of the faculty members.
       The paper should be 18 to 20 pages long, excluding any maps, tables, graphics, and
       citations. It will be graded based on the quality of the scholarship and written
       presentation. It must also be properly cited. We will provide you with guidelines for
       writing the paper. Due date: Monday, August 24th, 2009.


Grades for the course will be based on the following grading scale.

A       93-100%          B       83-86.9%           C     73-76.9%         D       63-66.9%
A-      90-92.9%         B-      80-82.9%           C-    70-72.9%         D-      60-62.9%
B+      87-89.9%         C+      77-79.9%           D+    67-69.9%         F       Less than 60%

The grades will be determined as follows.

                3 Credits:                                6 Credits:
Point Values    Participation:            10 pts.         3 Credit Requirements:           100 pts.
                Assignment:               15 pts.         Research Paper:                  100 pts.
                Fieldwork report          25 pts.
                Photo Journal Album:      50 pts.


We are well aware that this program represents a significant investment by everyone involved.
As such, it is our goal to provide a program that it is intellectually challenging and enjoyable. In
instances where this goal is compromised by student misconduct, appropriate actions will be
taken. For pertinent information see the “Appendix - Conduct and Discipline” in the CCSU
Student Handbook.


This Syllabus comprises the first part of a Coursepack of study materials. The rest of the
packet include trip tips, paper requirements, orientation materials, academic readings, as
well as field study and a brief historical table will be distributed to you at our first pre-trip
meeting. TAKE IT WITH YOU!

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