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Introduction to Teaching at the AIEN Institute of Shanghai Ocean University
The AIEN Institute is the teaching centre for the joint venture between Shanghai Ocean University and the University of Tasmania, Australia. The Institute was established in 2002 it offers a four-year business degree program with majors in either Information Management and Information Systems or International Marketing. Currently over 1400 students are enrolled.
Shanghai Ocean University (SHOU)
SHOU (formerly the Shanghai Fisheries University) was founded in 1912. It is one of the 13 Shanghai-based universities which have key disciplines recognized by the State Ministry of Education.
University of Tasmania (UTas)
UTas, Australia, has a history of over 100 years and is highly regarded and globally ranked international teaching and research institution.
English department staff
There are 11 staff members of the English Department, including the Director, the Administrative Assistant, Program Coordinator, Program Developer and teachers.
Courses delivered by the AIEN Institute, SHOU
The first year course at the AIEN Institute SHOU is English for Academic Purposes (EAP) and Study Skills; this is a preparation course for students who will begin studying in China with the UTas (Australia) in their second year.
The second year course offers the students English support and development while they are undertaking undergraduate studies in Information Management and Information Systems, or International Marketing. The students study Business English, which focuses on writing, presentations, and employment skills.
There are approximately 400 students in each year group, divided into 16 classes of approximately 25 students per class.
Curriculum and teaching materials
AIEN Institute is an elite educational program that offers an intensive curriculum geared towards preparing students to continue further studies abroad and / or to pursue a business career in multinational companies all over the world. The teaching materials are developed by the Director, Program Coordinator, Program Developer and teachers, and are supported by set text books and materials.
The curriculum for each cohort is structured into modules and involves ongoing assessment tasks within each module, as well as mid and end-of-course tests. The courses are a blend of face-to-face and on-line activities. The first year EAP curriculum trains and exposes students to the following academic areas:
- Academic research writing: written reports; a wide variety of academic texts such as Argument Text, Discussion Text, Graphs and Tables writing, and Research Paper; academic grammar and vocabulary features, such as sentence structures, cause and effect, compare and contrast language, process text etc.
- Individual and group speaking presentations: development of students’ English speaking skills through individual presentations and interviews; group presentations; Problem-Solution-Evaluation presentations; team building and confidence training; argument and debate skills; training in effective creation of visual aids to be used in presentations.
- Reading skills and vocabulary development: training and exposure to different academic texts and academic word lists; familiarizing students with reading strategies such as skimming and scanning and note-taking styles; marketing and information systems based technical vocabulary and jargon.
- Harvard referencing system and academic honesty: students are trained to avoid plagiarism by using the Harvard Referencing System modified to suit the UTas referencing style. It covers intellectual property rights and academic research skills, in-text referencing, direct quotations, summarizing and paraphrasing.
- Study skills and critical thinking: it involves building a sound foundation of English language and study skills for further university study, rather than a mastery of skills for one specific assessment. Critical thinking is a necessary skill to improve students’ understanding of language functions. Students are trained to be able to identify the structure, functions, and features of the given text allowing them to transfer their knowledge and skills from one activity to another. Students are required to use and develop their critical thinking skills to think outside the box in order to solve problems, accomplish tasks, and finish assignments.
- Progressive individual development and exposure to international culture: AIEN institute rigorously screens, selects, and employs educators from around the world. Priority is given to quality of teaching and effective teaching strategies. Students’ individual development is assured by combining the best discipline of the Chinese education system and the interactive approaches to education from foreign methodologies. Students are regularly exposed to foreign culture on a day to day basis providing them with different approaches to completing tasks, thus improving their cognitive skills.
The second year curriculum trains and teaches students the language-based professional skills necessary for future employment within an international business context. The program offers the following:
- Clear understanding of the international business world: it teaches students about the different corporate structures, business ethics, corporate culture, business negotiation, and the roles of different departments and employee’s positions within a company. This is covered in every face to face class and is reinforced by the online learning platform.
- International business and management styles: students are required to conduct surveys and research outside the classroom to identify different types of management styles from different managers around the world. The program also encourages the students to think critically about their own managerial and leadership qualities. A successful completion of this task guarantees a wider understanding of different managers and business leaders, and their management styles.
- Job hunting, hiring and recruitment: this is a unique attribute of the program that is designed to assist students in a successful job application in the future. It trains students in the practical, up-to-date and effective way to write a cover letter (letter of application) and a CV / resume intended for multi-national companies.
- Job interview and interview simulation: no known joint venture practices and trains students on the proper ways and means with regard to job interviews. The AIEN second year program enhances the skills necessary to be successful in job interviews. As well as the necessary language skills, practical interview skills are taught, including dress code, proper gestures, how to answer difficult interview questions, and conversing confidently. These and many more skills are covered as part of their Job Interview speaking assessment.
- Case study writing: to reinforce and strengthen the UTas major units, case study writing is a necessary component. Students are trained to write a case study using a variety of case study formats such as, SWOT analysis, PESTLE analysis, and Problem-Solution-Evaluation. These are concise versions of the Research Paper they covered from the previous year.
- Field Research Report and Presentation: the Field Research Report and Presentation will enable students to practice all their skills in research and presentations. Students are required to select and evaluate an international or domestic corporation, set-up an appointment, conduct an interview with the duly recognized representative of the company, record the interview and conversation, evaluate the said activity, and report their findings in a presentation assessment in the face to face class.
- Business Presentation: this assessed activity trains students in marketing, branding products and developing a corporate image necessary for selling and promoting their own product in an assumed business situation.
Under the EAP and Business English program of AIEN Institute, students are expected to gain an advanced knowledge and skill level necessary for them to succeed in their chosen fields both domestically and internationally.
Teaching program organization
Classes are timetabled in 1.5 hour sessions – 5 min break after 45 mins - with a 15 minute mid-morning break, 80-minute lunch break and 10 minute mid-afternoon breaks. Classes fall within the hours of 8.15 am to 4.20 pm Monday to Thursday and 8.15 to 11:40 am on Friday. There are no evening or weekend classes.
Teachers in the First Year EAP Program work as ‘team teachers’, with 2-3 teachers sharing the weekly teaching load of each of the 16 classes.
The face-to-face teaching hours are 19.5 hours of the 38 hour working week. Each teacher is available for consultation by students during office hours (1.5 hours per week). The remaining 17 hours are used for marking and lesson preparation as well as for collegiate activities such as staff meetings, professional development, reporting on student progress and lesson planning. At the discretion of the Director, work such as marking may be done off campus.
The campus of SHOU
Until August 2008, the SHOU had two campuses – the older city campus and the newer campus in Nanhui, an outer district of greater Shanghai. In September 2008, the university moved to the new campus in Lingang (New City) Pudong.
Lingang is part of greater Shanghai and is about an hour’s drive from the city centre of Shanghai. The new city is on the shore of a large lake, the largest man-made lake in China and a major tourist spot. The area is only a short distance from the sea and the new deep sea port. The air is clean and the open spaces are welcoming, especially for cyclists. The university campus is connected with Subway Metro line 16 that starts its operation from 5:50 am and ends at 10:30 pm.
The Lingang area is a thriving and developing new city. There are various shopping malls, supermarkets, and entertainment venues spread throughout the area, catering for both western and Chinese tastes. There are many popular shopping and entertainment areas around the campus.
The starting date of the AIEN employment contract is usually September each year. For the 2021-22 academic year, classes commenced on the third week of September 2021. Recruitment is ongoing for this academic year, and we are actively hiring for an immediate start. ( Recruitment is ongoing for Second Semester 2021-2022 academic Year )
For newly joining teachers, there will be an orientation period prior to the commencement of classes. All AIEN teachers will be involved in orientation, curriculum development, lesson planning, teaching resource creation and professional development.
The academic year usually ends in early July. There is an option for a renewal of the contract after a review process. If the contract is renewed, the starting date will be the beginning of the next academic year. The teaching salary is not paid during the summer break. However, the living allowance will be paid over the summer break. This allows returning teachers to keep their apartment, if they so wish.
The AIEN Institute is situated in a four storey building with a lift and air-conditioning in offices, conference rooms, recreation rooms, staff rooms and all English classrooms. Each classroom has power point facilities.
The English Department staff facilities include a well-equipped staff room with individual work stations and computers, conference room and meeting areas.
There are a number of restaurants - both Chinese and western - as well as coffee shops, convenience stores, a post office and banking facilities on the campus.
AIEN staff may use the services of the campus clinic which is staffed by Chinese doctors and nurses. Language interpretation is offered if required. The cost is low. AIEN also provides medical insurance to cover medical costs for accidents and hospital stay.
Accommodation for teachers
The AIEN Institute will provide the first three nights’ accommodation free for new teachers entering Shanghai. The accommodation will be arranged or approved by the institute.
Assistance will be provided in finding accommodation for all newly joining teachers. The AIEN Institute contract includes a monthly allowance to assist in covering the cost of accommodation, utilities and local and/or commuting travel.
- Local apartments in Lingang are available for rent. These apartments have standard white goods and are furnished. Tenants will need to buy their own linen, crockery and cutlery. Most apartments are furnished. The rent for a single bedroom apartment is about RMB 2,200 per month. These rents are much lower than those charged in more central parts of Shanghai. A local bus runs between the main residential areas and the campus.
- Some members of staff choose to stay in the Shanghai suburbs closer to the city centre. Renting an apartment there is usually between RMB 5,500 and RMB 8,000 per month, with the deposit and advance rent. A university commuter bus runs from Zhangjiang GaoKe Metro station to the campus at 7.00 am each morning. A return bus departs from the campus each day at 1.00 pm and 4.30 pm (Friday at 3.30 pm). The commuting time is about 50 minutes, depending on traffic conditions. The bus fare is 5 RMB. An allowance is included in the salary package to help cover this cost.
- On arrival (if you are not already living in Shanghai) someone from the AIEN Institute will meet you and bring you to either the campus or to reserved accommodation. During your first week, AIEN will help to orient you to living and working in China, look for accommodation, undertake procedures required by the Chinese Government (e.g. medical, visa ) and familiarize you with the teaching program.
The AIEN Institute SHOU package
The AIEN Institute offers an attractive package including:
- a competitive salary
- an accommodation / living allowance
- local travel allowance
- annual travel allowance
- annual bonus
- free workday lunch
- local medical coverage
- public holidays and paid annual leave
- assistance with visa application
- reimbursement of medical check and visa costs at the end of the 6 week probation period
- high quality teaching materials and lesson outlines
- on-going professional development
- career development opportunities
The details of the salary package will be discussed during the interview.
Please note that applicants without the minimum qualification requirements will NOT be considered for interview. If you are interested in joining our team, please follow the application procedure below:
- Please go to the following URL https://ien.shou.edu.cn/2200/list.htm.
- At the bottom of page, download the AIEN Application < /em>Form.doc. Please read the information carefully.
- Complete the application form and send it as an email attachment to our HR Officer, Mr. Tom Sun: firstname.lastname@example.org
- The information you submit in the application form will be used in a confidential manner for application purposes only.
- Your application will be reviewed and if you are selected for interview, you will be contacted to arrange a suitable time for face-to-face, telephone or video interview.