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Company Projects

Real-world projects to extend your business and international experience

Undertaking demanding research or consultancy projects for external businesses in both the UK and China is a major focus of this unique Masters programme and forms a substantial part of the assessment (120 credits). This project work provides a great chance for you to put your skills to use in genuine business situations, learn first-hand practical lessons about the business world, and exchange ideas with entrepreneurs and business leaders.

The projects will be with businesses participating in the Lancaster China Catalyst Programme. This new cross-University initiative has been set up to facilitate the growth of technology-focused SMEs in the UK, helping them to expand their commercial activities in China. At the same time it enables students on this MSc to develop knowledge and experience of what is involved in international business development.

The projects are likely to take a variety of forms, but will involve collaborative R&D and commercialisation to support the development of new ventures, products, services or business processes. Working either individually or as part of a cross-disciplinary team, you will take in several projects, involving businesses in both the UK and China.

In your second year, you spend six months during the Michaelmas and Lent terms in China, working with a business in Guangdong Province. This is a great way to enhance your CV and to build upon your international experience. In some instances, the project could start during the previous term, depending on the needs of the company concerned.

We help you to find accommodation in China and provide support to help you make the most of this exciting opportunity.

Language and cultural studies

In preparation for the Year 2 placement in China, all non-Chinese speakers take an intensive module in Chinese Language and Culture for Business in the Summer term of Year 1. This module is run by the Lancaster University Confucius Institute. This is supplemented with non-credited Chinese language lessons which are provided in the Michaelmas and Lent terms of Year 1.

Designed for beginners with no or little prior knowledge of Chinese, it provides an immersive introduction to Mandarin Chinese in its standardised spoken form and to simplified characters as used in mainland China, focusing particularly the language needed in a business context. It prepares you linguistically and culturally for your industrial project in China, developing your awareness of cultural diversity and Chinese-Western cultural differences and helping you to communicate effectively with colleagues in China.

Students who already speak Chinese will take the cultural element this module, and a Business Ethics and Society module.

Other interaction with business

Other business engagement is also an integral element of the programme. Throughout your first year you will also be expected to attend and participate in guest lectures and a seminar series - offering real lessons and insights from business leaders and relevant quasi-governmental organisations.