Focus on Double First-Rate

Zhejiang University
Hangzhou, Zhejiang (CN)
October 12 2017
Organization Type

About Zhejiang University

Located in the historical and picturesque city of Hangzhou, Zhejiang University is a prestigious institution of higher education with a long history. After a hundred years of construction and development, Zhejiang University has become a comprehensive research university with distinctive features and relatively great impact at home and abroad. Research at Zhejiang University spans 12 academic disciplines, covering philosophy, economics, law, education, literature, history, art, science, engineering, agriculture, medicine, management and etc. In all 22 disciplines of ESI, there are 18 disciplines leading to top 1% in the world. Zhejiang University has always been committed to cultivating talent with excellence, advancing science and technology development, serving for social well-being, and promoting advanced culture with the spirit best manifested by the university motto “Seeking the Truth and Pioneering New Trails”. Zhejiang University has long been holding the educational philosophy of putting people foremost, cultivating students in an all-round way, seeking the truth and pioneering new trails in search of excellence, and is committed to cultivating future leaders with an international perspective.

A look into ZJU’s plan to world-class university

Nature’s inside view interviewed Prof. WU Zhaohui, President of Zhejiang University

What are the steps towards the goal?

We have set up a three-step plan to be consistently listed among the top in world university rankings. To achieve this, our strategies are to cultivate high-quality people, build academic strength, pursue research excellence, attract high-calibre scholars, observe cultural traditions and explore reform approaches. We are implementing comprehensive reform to improve our systems of talent training, academic innovation, faculty team-building, school administration and support. We will keep the momentum of the reform, be open to integration into global education and innovation network, retain an innovation-driven strategy and stay true to the mission of serving regional, national and global needs.

How does ZJU cultivate innovators?

We have a coordinated approach to improve talent training. The goal of our holistic   education is to closely integrate knowledge transmission, skill training and personality moulding. We are reinventing an educational model that incorporates general and  specialized education, interdisciplinary training, as well as ideological and political teaching. We also try to streamline classroom education, open online courses, mobile learning and internet platforms to diversify students’ classroom experience. Future leaders need to be high-quality innovators with an international perspective. We have leveraged our multidisciplinary strength and entrepreneurial spirit to train interdisciplinary, creative talents. Our achievements are demonstrated by prizes won by ZJU students in international contests, such as a mathematical contest in modeling, an international collegiate programming contest and RoboCups. Entrepreneurial success of ZJU graduates and the amount of funding secured by ZJU start-ups are also outstanding among Chinese universities.

What are your internationalization strategies?

As globalization increases, opening up is integral to our goal of building a world-class university. We are accelerating our internationalization plan by forging partnerships with world-class academic institutions overseas. We have sent out more than 8,000 teachers and students for exchange and received more than 6,000 overseas students as of 2016. We have also built first-rate joint institutes with the University of Edinburgh and the University of Illinois at Urbana Champaign. Our plan to open up also means creating an ecosystem for innovation and entrepreneurship by integrating resources across and outside campus. In education, we are embracing the “open loop university” concept, providing open-access learning opportunities and building an internationalized platform. We also strive to promote sharing of knowledge and culture.

(The Official Newsletter Letter of Zhejiang University, Vol.01, May 17th, 2017)

A look into ZJU’s international student education

Professor SONG Yonghua published an article entitled Enhancing the Quality of International Student Education in China to Advance “ Double First-Rate “ Plan on China Education Daily

Professor Song Yonghua, Executive Vice President of Zhejiang University, Director of Zhejiang University Center for International Education Research, and Chairman of International Education Committee, Chinese Society of Educational Development Strategy ( IEC) recently published an article entitled Enhancing the Quality of International Student Education in China to Advance “Double First-rate” Plan on China Education Daily. He proposes new ideas for improving the quality of international student education in China in the new era when the establishment of both world-class universities and first-class disciplines is a high priority.

The article points out that the core value and mission of world’ s leading universities lie in the accountability of cultivating high-qualified talents and global leaders with national passion, international vision, and global competitiveness. Due to the general trend of the internationalization of higher education worldwide, the competition for high-quality students has become a common trend among universities worldwide. Providing high quality international student education to world’ s top talents and employing the graduates have become an important national strategy. Therefore, in this context, it is important to strongly emphasize the strategic role of international student education to further improve China’ s international competitiveness.

The article further stresses that in order to advance the goal of double first-class by elevating the quality of international student education, the following steps need to be taken into consideration, including “improve the status of international student education in China and contribute to the national development strategy ” , “innovate the concept of international student education in China and cultivate world leaders” , “expand the input of educational resources to improve the quality in education”, and “create advanced and systematic support system to expand service capacity”. The article carries significant guiding concepts to both Chinese-foreign cooperative educational programs, as well as educational practitioners nationwide. (


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