KIN4550 – Research Topics in Chinese Culture and Society I

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Course content

Topic and detailed description for Autumn 2021: The Sociology of China

This course supplements KIN4510 – How to study Chinese Culture and Society at an Advanced Level by introducing you to a specific research topic within the study of Chinese culture and society. During the course, you will engage with cutting-edge research literature and debates in the relevant field, and you will experience how one topic may be approached from different academic angles and with different methodologies. You will work with primary sources, research literature, theory, and methodology relevant for the specific topic of the course. The course is co-taught by at least two teachers with different research backgrounds, and the specific topic of the course may change each time the course is offered.

Previous years:

Topic Autumn 2019

Learning outcome

  • You will learn how to identify a research topic, narrow down its focus, and formulate research questions related to a specific research topic within the study of Chinese society and culture
  • You will learn how to develop a research paper and how to work with various forms of sources, how to develop a consistent methodological framework, and how to integrate theory
  • You will learn to read extensively, and to critically analyse sources in Chinese and English
  • You will learn to present and discuss academic knowledge in oral and written form


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.

The course presupposes competence in modern Chinese 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.


Teaching is organized as 10 classes of 2 hours each throughout the semester and will be co-taught by at least two teachers.

Compulsory activities

  • Active participation in class and at least 80 per cent attendance
  • One oral presentation in class, individually or as part of a team
  • One opposition on oral presentation in class

Oral presentations and opposition in class 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.


The exam is a 3-day home exam consisting of a paper of 3000 words plus list of reference. Topic is assigned by the teacher. The home exam paper should include the use of sources in both Chinese and English.

Previous exams and 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

It is possible to take the exam up to 3 times. If you withdraw from the exam after the deadline or during the exam, 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 evaluation Fall 2019

Facts about this course






Every autumn


Every autumn

Teaching language