KIN4340 – Dissecting Chinese Culture and History

Schedule, syllabus and examination date

Choose semester

Course content

Topic Spring 2020: Chinese modern education – discourse and concepts

This course will focus on one research topic within the field of Chinese culture and history. The topic may be different every time the course is offered, and will be closely related to the teacher’s ongoing research. Thematically it will fall within the scope of research areas such as history and historiography, ideas and ideologies, philosophy and religion, literature and language, film and other artistic expressions, etc. You will learn how analyse Chinese culture and history, how to critically assess sources, how to work with them, and how to develop and formulate a term paper based on your own selection of sources.

The course is based on the reading, analysis and discussion of primary and secondary sources in Chinese, as well as secondary sources in English. Training in methodology, essay writing and oral presentation are an integrated part of the course.

Learning outcome

  • You will learn to identify, read, summarize, critically assess, and analyse sources relevant to the study of key topics in Chinese culture and history.
  • Through teacher-guided writing of an essay you will learn to present academic knowledge in a written form.
  • Through class presentations and oral discussions you will learn to present and debate academic knowledge orally.


Students who are admitted to study programmes at UiO must each semester register which courses and exams they wish to sign up for in Studentweb.

If you are not already enrolled as a student at UiO, please see our information about admission requirements and procedures.


Formal prerequisite knowledge

Admission to the MA programme option Chinese Culture and Society and passed the first semester course KIN4510 – How to study Chinese Culture and Society at an Advanced Level.

The teaching presupposes competence in modern Chinese language and basic reading competence in classical Chinese.

Overlapping courses

The course may overlap with discontinued courses and old study units of all types and levels. You must ensure that the content of the course does not overlap with other study units you have previously obtained credits for.

Contact the Department if you have any questions.


The teaching is organized as 10 classes of 2 hours each throughout the semester.

Compulsory activities

  • Active participation in at least 8 out of 10 classes
  • An oral presentation and opposition in class

  • The topic and a preliminary draft of the term paper must be submitted in Canvas

Approved oral presentation, opposition in class and drafts of the term paper are only valid for one semester.

All compulsory activities must be approved in order to qualify for the exam. It is the student’s responsibility to check whether or not the compulsory activities are approved. 

This is how you apply for valid absence from compulsory activities/compulsory attendance.

Access to teaching

A student who has completed compulsory instruction and coursework and has had these approved, is not entitled to repeat that instruction and coursework. A student who has been admitted to a course, but who has not completed compulsory instruction and coursework or had these approved, is entitled to repeat that instruction and coursework, depending on available capacity.


A term paper on a subject developed by the student and approved by the teacher, 3200 - 3500 words plus list of references. The term paper should be based on both primary sources in Chinese and secondary source readings in Chinese and/or English.

Grading guidelines

Submit assignments in Inspera

You submit your assignment in the digital examination system Inspera. Read about how to submit your assignment.

Use of sources and citation

You should familiarize yourself with the rules that apply to the use of sources and citations. If you violate the rules, you may be suspected of cheating/attempted cheating.

Language of examination

The examination text is given in English, and you submit your response in English.

Grading scale

Grades are awarded on a scale from A to F, where A is the best grade and F is a fail. Read more about the grading system.

Explanations and appeals

Resit an examination

Withdrawal from an examination

A term paper or equivalent that is passed may not be resubmitted in revised form.

If you withdraw from the exam after the deadline, this will be counted as an examination attempt.

Special examination arrangements

Application form, deadline and requirements for special examination arrangements.


The course is subject to continuous evaluation. At regular intervals we also ask students to participate in a more comprehensive evaluation.

Periodic course evaluation fall 2016

Facts about this course






Every spring

As of Spring 2020


Every spring

As of Spring 2020

Teaching language