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With a long history of education, the School of Liberal Arts housed by Jiangsu University has laid a good foundation of academic studies for liberal arts. Currently it offers two undergraduate programs: Chinese Language and Literature (branching into Teacher Training and Secretary) and TCSOL, as well as two postgraduate programs: the Master of Chinese Language and Literature of the first-category discipline and the professional program of MTCSOL. The Language and Culture Center under the same administration as the School of Liberal Arts comprises two departments: Chinese Language Teaching and Foreign Language Training. It also houses Confucius Institute Headquarters Training Program of Teachers to Teach Chinese to Speakers of Other Languages and JSU TOEFL Test Center.

The School of Liberal Arts boasts a faculty of 53, among whom 42 are full-time, including 7 full professors, 14 associate professors, 29 PhDs, 10 overseas returnees studying and/or engaged in TCSOL abroad, 1 ranked among Talents of Jiangsu Qinglan Project, and 1 among Jiangsu PhDs for Innovation and Entrepreneurship. In recent years we have exerted an important influence in the academic circles with our prominent achievements in studies on the inheritance and dissemination of outstanding Chinese cultural classics, studies on regional literature and culture, literature and art studies and folklore, etc. Faculty members at the School of Liberal Arts have headed 7 projects sponsored by the National Social Science Foundation of China, among which 1 is a key project, and 8 projects at the provincial or the ministerial level. We won 1 second prize of Jiangsu Philosophy and Social Science Outstanding Achievement Award. We have published more than 20 academic monographs and more than 300 research papers, including more than 40 papers on authoritative periodicals like Foreign Literature Review, Jianghai Academic Journal, and Central China Academics, as well as other periodicals indexed by CSSCI. The School creates an exceptional academic environment for its professors, having invited such famous scholars as Lu Jianming, Zheng Jiawen, Zhou Jianzhong, Wang Huayun, Luo Shijin, Zhong Zhenzhen, Wu Yinghui, Zhang Xinsheng to give lectures at Zenghua Pavilion Forum. In recent three years, a number of important academic conferences have been held by the School, including Symposium on Multidisciplinary Perspective on Lu Xuns Cultural Relics and Spiritual Inheritance, Symposium on the Hermeneutics of The Analects of Confucius and the Inheritance and Dissemination of Confucianism, 8th Symposium on Yuan Haowen, International Symposium on The Category of Literary Theory and The Literary Mind and the Carving of Dragons, etc. Availing ourselves of the long-standing and plentiful historical and cultural resources in Zhenjiang and inheriting the outstanding tradition of academic research of ours, we have established 8 research institutions, namely the Center for the Grand Canal Cultural Inheritance and Dissemination, the Institute of the International Publicity of Chinese Classics, the Institute of the Culture of Three Kingdoms, the Institute of Corpus Linguistics, the Institute of Zhenjiang Local Culture, the Institute of the Culture and Literature and Art of the Six Dynasties, the Institute of Folk Culture and Intangible Cultural Heritage, the Institute of Language Policy and Strategy, the Institute of China Spirit.

The School of Liberal Arts adheres to its educational tradition of more than a hundred years. The inception of its educational history dates back to the Chinese courses, i. e. Chinese Linguistics and Chinese Literature that comprise the bulk of Chinese classics, offered by the Top Express Class and the Junior Teachers’ College of Sanjiang Normal University founded in 1902 by Liu Kunyi and Zhang Zhidong. Since the founding of the People’s Republic of China in 1949, the majority of the School faculties have come from the Chinese Teaching and Research Section of the former Jiangsu University of Science and Technology and the Chinese Department of the former Zhenjiang Teachers’ College.

The Department of Chinese of Zhenjiang Teachers’ College was founded in 1958, offering a teacher training program in Chinese at the junior college level. In 1993, the Department of Chinese of Zhenjiang Teachers’ College and the Department of Literature of Nanjing Normal University initiated a joint teacher training undergraduate program in Chinese. In 1990s, Jiangsu University of Science and Technology offered a Commercial Secretary Program at the junior college level and housed the Chinese Teaching and Research Section that undertook all the kernel courses of the Commercial Secretary Program, as well as such University-level public courses as College Chinese and Applied Writing. In 2001, the Department of Chinese affiliated to the School of Humanities and Social Sciences was founded by combining the Department of Chinese of the former Zhenjiang Teachers’ College and the Chinese Teaching and Research Section of the former Jiangsu University of Science and Technology, together with the founding of Jiangsu University by amalgamating the former Jiangsu University of Science and Technology, the former Zhenjiang Medical College and the former Zhenjiang Teachers’ College. In 2002, the newly founded Department of Chinese successfully passed the appraisal of degree-granting qualifications for undergraduates in Chinese (a teacher training program) and then started to enroll students independently. Within the same year, based on the former Commercial Secretary Program, a new undergraduate program entitled Chinese Language and Literature (Senior Foreign Secretary) was offered and the first students officially enrolled in 2003 in Jiangsu province. In 2007, the Department of Chinese of the School of Humanities and Social Sciences was qualified to offer the TCFL Program at the undergraduate level and enroll students from all over China. In 2011, the Department of Chinese of the former School of Humanities and Social Sciences was incorporated into the newly founded School of Humanities and Law and branched into the Department of Chinese Language and Literature and the Department of Teaching Chinese to Speakers of Other Languages. On May 27, 2016, Jiangsu University dissolved the School of Humanities and Law, organized the School of Liberal Arts(under the same administration as the Language and Culture Center), thus opening a new chapter in the development of the School of Liberal Arts.

The School of Liberal Arts highlights the philosophy of innovative talent cultivation and reinforces the quality of talent cultivation. We stick to the cultivation model that focuses on both theoretical teaching and practical training, devoting ourselves to cultivating innovative, international and interdisciplinary talents. By adhering to the steering principles of “self-cultivation-based, study-centered, employment-oriented, growth-targeted”, we have made remarkable achievements in ideological education, academic atmosphere, Youth League and Students Union work, community management, social practice, volunteer service, etc through exerting the professional competence and personality characteristics of students. We have won honors in quite a few student activities at the provincial or above level, whose features and spotlights have been reported by major media in China, like People’s Daily, Guangming Daily, China Education Daily and China Youth Daily. The degree-conferring rate in recent years have amounted to above 99%; the employment rate to above 97%, including a graduate enrollment rate of about 15% and an employment rate of about 50% of civil servants, public institution workers, and college-graduate village officials. The educational quality is widely acknowledged and universally commended by the employers.

Under the same administration, the School of Liberal Arts and the Language and Culture Center jointly promote the education of TCSOL, providing a sound mechanism for the internationalization of the School of Liberal Arts and the Chinese language and culture education of the overseas students in Jiangsu University. The innovation on and international spread of the traditional discipline of Chinese Language and Literature becomes the basic future development orientation of the School of Liberal Arts. To strengthen the future international cooperation and exchanges, we will construct a platform for international exchanges of language and culture, expand the enrollment scale of overseas students majoring in Chinese Language and Literature and TCSOL, and strive to promote the internationalization of our education.

To quote an ancient Chinese poet, “From shore to shore it is wide at high tide, and before the fair wind a sail is lifting.” In the new historical period when Jiangsu University is striving to build itself into a “top-notch, distinctive and international research university”and a Double First-class university”, the School of Liberal Arts will seize every minute to steadfastly build a school of liberal arts with distinctive professional characteristics, multiple channels for international cooperative education and widespread international influence by constantly heralding the strategy of internalization, prioritizing the discipline construction, consolidating scientific research, centering on undergraduate teaching, and highlighting talent cultivation.

 

 
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