What is a Noun?

13 Dec

What is a Noun? 什么是名词? When a word tells us the name名称or title for something, it is a noun. 名词是某事的名字。A noun is a word that names a person, place, thing, quality, or idea

Examples:

  • Person: Mary, mother, child, teacher, doctor, secretary, King Henry
  • Place: forest, country, China, home, racetrack, grocery store
  • Thing: notebook, pot, bottle, calculator, sun, cell phone
  • Quality: kindness, peace, hope, anger, love, passion, loyalty
  • Idea / Theory: socialism, utilitarianism, moral, interest, obligation

 

Question: What is it?

Answer:  “It is _________.” 它是 _________. The missing word is a noun.

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Education SUPPORTS Training

11 Dec

One of the things I wish more college professors focused on  was explaining WHY classes are important.

I have found that my students repeat the same idea:  they expect their jobs to prepare them for their work. They believe that when they start a job, the company will give them training and experience. They will start on the bottom and, as they are trained, work their way up. They end up going to college to get the paper with no interest in actually learning. They feel like they will just get the same material in career training later.

And to an extent this is true. Most companies are willing to offer and may require training after hiring you.  But companies do not want to spend time & $$ training a college graduate in information they were expected to learn in college. If I am going to educate you myself, why would I pay for a more expensive college graduate?  If you say that you have a BA in Finance, companies expect you to at least know what stocks, bonds, derivatives, stockholders, etc. are and how they work.  I may train you in how my company does it specifically, but I expect you to know the general theory and vocabulary BEFORE training.  I pay a college graduate more because I have to train them LESS. College is to give you the foundations so that the company can train you QUICKLY in the specifics and then you hit the ground running. 

Academic Writing Standards (for my Chinese students)

8 Dec

Few reminders for professional or academic writing style of the West.

If you are submitting documents (like graduate school papers, academic papers, professional business documents), there are certain generally expected standards.  For example, 

  • Times New Roman font
  • Size 12
  • Double Spaced (for academic papers)
  • 1″ (2.54cm) margins on ALL sides

The problem is most Chinese writing programs I have seen (including Word and WPS) do not do these methods automatically. I have often had my students complain that their professors marked them down for “formatting” and they aren’t sure why.  The problem is, most programs I’ve worked with here do 3cm margins by default. And they “double space” with a special button checked called “snap to grid” that distorts the spacing.  I highly recommend checking your document ahead of time before submission.  If you fix those two issues, a paper that was supposed to be 8-10 pages is suddenly 6-7 pages.  Go to “Page Layout” -> “Margins” and make SURE it’s 2.54.  Click the spacing button and look at your “options.” Make sure the “snap to grid” button is NOT checked. 

How to Pass an Exam

8 Dec

Student: Teacher! I did it! Every time I read a question, I thought “What was the big point?” And if it was 100% true, I chose it! Even if there was another that maybe was true!

Me: Yayayayayayayayayayay!!!!!!

**My “A” students have had a difficult time with this. They over-think themselves into exceptions and assume there is a trick. “well. . . but, but, but! It COULD have been diseconomies of scale if the moon was on the left and the sun came up in the west and it was exactly 4pm and the revenue was 0!” We had a very long discussion at review that I do NOT try to trick people. I need EVERYONE to pass! 🤣😄 There is ALWAYS an exception, so focus on the main idea. Finally, one of them got it! Hooray!

Creepy #Cat!

7 Dec

​I can’t decide if this guy is #Awesome or McCreepy . . . . The head is HUGE and those eyes. . . . staring.  Waiting to pounce.  Waiting to KILL!  Imagine that massive stare at night, in the dark!

OFO Bike Sharing Market Research

3 Dec

Image result for OFO

My students in microeconomics were recently studying quantity demand and ways to improve profits. Before we moved onto changing prices, we spent some time discussing ways they can change or alter the other 5 factors of demand (Income, Price of Related Goods, Taste, Future Price, and Number of Buyers in the Market).

This brought us to Consumer Research and how companies gather information about their buyers, products, and demand markets.

I recently noticed that the OFO bicycle system has just started operating on the Northeast Normal University campus this semester. For those of you unfamiliar with the system, OFO is an app that allows users to rent bicycles and drive them around town with no designated pick-up or drop-off site.

It was originally founded in Beijing in 2014, but has since spread to cities around China and more countries besides.

The theory of the system is rather simple.

Users download the application on their cell phones and set up an account. The start-up deposit fee has traditionally been 199RMB in China (about $30) which then goes to your account. Then it costs a small amount (1-2RMB) per hour (about $0.16) that you ride. To get a bicycle you locate the familiar yellow bike and use the Code Scanner on your phone to read the bicycle’s bar code. That registers the bicycle to you, and you then ride around wherever you want to go. When you are finished, you cancel the agreement and leave the bicycle wherever you stopped.

There are many conveniences to the program (handy for local transportation, students enjoy the system). But there are some inconveniences as well (too many bicycles left lying in the way of sidewalks and doors, bicycles can be difficult to find, etc).

So I arranged a small market survey and sent it out to my students. They shared it with the freshman (and a few with their parents / siblings) and we used KwikSurveys.com to analyze our results.

Although it is not official, it was a lot of fun and we did learn some interesting results that I thought I would share.

Income

We started by testing the income level of our respondents. We agreed that 199RMB was a lot for students with less than 1000RMB per month. There were a few students who thought it was too expensive as a start-up deposit. Especially since most of them felt they may not ever use that much money in the long run. Some of the students complained that since Changchun is in the north (with very cold weather very early in the fall and late in the sprint), their time to use it was limited. This much money for something they would only use a few months was a stretch.

Demographics

To get a feel for our response bias and the real category of people we reached, we also established some demographics.  

Most of the boys agreed they had tried it, but we had a difficult time getting them to take the survey. 🙂

The students also agreed that, although our survey never reached them, their parents and grandparents were a possible market for OFO. Several students said their parents had already tried it as well. The 21 – 25 year olds were mostly our Junior students. The 15-18 year olds were Freshmen.

Reputation of OFO

At this point, most of the students were familiar with the system. Those who did not recognize the same were aware of the “Yellow Bicycle”

PAST PERFORMANCE

The students also agreed that 24% was a high number for a company like OFO. Although it has only been in Changchun this year, it has been operating in China for a while. They recommended that OFO help teach people how to ride bicycles or show people how to set up the account. They felt like there was not enough information about OFO or people introducing them to OFO.

Some students (and me) had trouble setting up the OFO account. Most of the unhappy users felt like the system was clear, but it often didn’t work or was broken. They complained that they would try to put in all the information and then would get an error code. But quite a few thought it went pretty smoothly.

The Bicycle “easy to reserve” part was must less satisfying amongst the students. The majority complained that there weren’t enough bicycles. They paid a high start-up deposit fee, but then could not ever find bicycles in their area. The bicycles were far away or were already being used. They wanted OFO to provide more bicycles in the area. At the same time, we discussed Beijing and Shanghai’s problems where there are TOO many bicycles available. The bicycles are parked on the sidewalks, and with so many taking up the space, people are forced to walk in the busy streets.

Most agreed that they enjoyed the experience overall. Some felt that it was too cold when they tried it (October — people in the far north are already bundling up for winter and heaters are turning on). Perhaps after summer they will have a different impression. Others felt like it was a lot of money and aggravation to get it all going. Many felt like it was a lot of fun for entertainment, but would not replace taxi or DiDi services.

FUTURE INTEREST

Overall, students seemed to feel that the program had a lot of potential and possibility. They did however think there were areas where it could be improved. It was a fascinating discussion, and the students responded very well!

Toad Bellies! #Foodie

1 Dec

​Strange #salad at the steakhouse the other night 😜 Back in #America when I was a kid, we use to blow in the leaves and make ‘#toad bellies’. 😂   Had no idea you could #Eat them!!!

Abbreviations are CRAZY

28 Nov
Me: “If I give you Q, TVC, and TFC you can find TC, AVC, AFC, SMC, ATC, etc.”
 
Students: 😓😵
 
Me: 🤣 Let’s try it step by step. . .

Happy #Thanksgiving!

23 Nov

Delicous treasure from one of my adorable students today – another gave me some Bon Bons.  Since I had to work on #thanksgiving (not a Holiday abroad 😭), this was quite the treat! 

Art I ❤ ~ Old Town

21 Nov
Old town 3 by WiredHuman

“Old Town” by Wired Human

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