University description (as per official university website)
Northwest Normal University (NWNU) is a key university under the joint construction of the Peopleís government of Gansu province and the Ministry of Education of China. It is also one of the 14 state-supported universities in western China. The predecessor of NWNU is the National Beiping Normal University, which originates from the Normal School of the Metropolitan University founded in 1902. After the "July 7 Incident" of 1937, Beiping Normal University was incorporated into the National Beiping University and the BeiYang Engineering Institute. The new incorporation was named as the Northwest Union University, to which the National Beiping Normal University reconstructed itself as an affiliated normal school and became independent in 1939, renamed as the National Northwest Normal Institute and moved to Lanzhou City In 1941. Before 1958, the National Northwest Normal Institute was one of the six key higher normal institutes directly under the administration of the Ministry of Education, and in 1958, the administration of the Institute shifted to Gansu Province. The Institute was renamed as Gansu Normal University thereafter, but resumed its name as Northwest Normal Institute in 1981, and finally renamed as the Northwest Normal University in 1988 until now. In 1985, the Northwest Normal University set up "the Northwest Ethnic Minority Teachers Training Center" directly under the Ministry of Education, with the administrative system featuring "Two Tablets, One Leading Board". In 1986, "Tibetan TeachersíTraining Center" under the State Council was established in the University. At Present, the Northwest Normal University is the key university of Gansu Province, and also one of the 14 universities in western area under the strong support of the Ministry of Education.
NWNU has set up 18 colleges, 49 departments, 2 teaching departments, 101 teaching and research centers (institutes), 6 labs (experimental centers), 1 national key research base of humanities and social sciences, 2 national key disciplines, 1 key lab under the joint construction of Gansu Province and the Ministry of Education, 3 provincial-level key labs, 7 provincial and ministerial-level research institutes (centers),16 provincial-level key disciplines, 20 university-level key disciplines, 5 provincial-level-and-above education bases. Under the commitment of the Ministry of Education, the University has established a good number of institutes and organizations such as the Elementary Education Curriculum Reform Research Center, the Northwest Ethnic Minority Education Development Research Center, the National Key Constructing Base of Training Teachers for Vocational Education, the National Base of Training Teachers for Physical Education, the Computers Donating Center under the Ministry of Education, University Instructors Training Base. And the University also established a good number of provincial organizations such as Gansu Higher School Teachers Training Center, Gansu Modern Distance Education Center, Gansu Policies and Statutes Training Center for Administrative Cadres in Higher Learning Institutes, Gansu Ideological and Political Education Center, Gansu Pre-Qin Literature and Culture Research Center, Gansu Chinese Language International Promotion Center, Academy of Educational Development, Academy of Western Resources Application, Western China Teachers'Training Research Center, Northwest Frontier History and Geography Research Center, and Northwest Ethnic Minority Area Development and Management Research Center.
NWNU is among the first to be entitled the academic degree granting authority ratified by the State Council to confer Bachelorís degree, Masterís Degree and Doctorate since 1982. At present, the University has 6 postdoctoral research centers of Pedagogy, Chinese Language and Literature, Histology, Mathematics and Chemistry, 2 first-grade, 26 second-grade disciplines and 1 specialty with Doctorate granting authority, 9 first-grade, 92 second-grade disciplines and 6 specialties with masterís degree granting authority, and 62 Bachelorís specialties. NWNU has established a fairly good academic degrees accreditation system, covering 9 academic fields such as Philosophy, Economics, the Science of Law, Pedagogy, Literature, Histology, Science, Engineering, Management, and 25 first-grade disciplines.
About 140,000 students have graduated from NWNU since its independence. The enrollment of the University has covered 31 provinces (cities and autonomous regions) and the number of the graduates is up to 34,300 now, among which 4,568 are postgraduates and doctors, 1,110 are on-the-job postgraduates, 16,500 undergraduates and 13,100 adult students.
NWNU boasts a well-organized and high-quality teaching staff of 2,408, among which 1,267 are fulltime teachers, 233 professors and research fellows, 595 associate professors and associate research fellows, 363 doctors, 605 postgraduates, 2 academicians, 93 doctoral supervisors, 516 master students supervisors, 1 national distinguished teacher, 57 teachers enjoying special government allowance ratified by the State Council, 8 winners of the "New Century Excellent Talents Supporting Program" and the "University Youth Teachers AwardsĒ, 5 young and middle-aged experts of outstanding contribution, 3 winners of the "National Hundreds and Millions of Talents Project", 106 academic teams (35 at national level and 71 at provincial and ministerial level) of first-grade disciplines, 8 national-level experts, 19 provincial and ministerial-level experts, 70 Gansu "333" "555" Talents of Scientific and Technological Innovations, and 60 Gansu Provincial Pioneering Talents. Prominent professors such as Lizheng, Li Jinxi, Yuan Dunli, Dong Shouyi, Li Jianxun, Hu Guoyu, Lv Sibai, Kong Xianwu, Chang Shuhong, Chenyong, Huangzhou, Pengduo, Guo Jinxi, Cheng Guodong, Xue Qunji, Li Bingde, Jin Baoxiang, Jin Shaoying, Nan Guonong have taught successively in the University.
NWNU also boasts a strong scientific research capability. In recent years, the SCIE-included research papers relevant to the basic theory of natural sciences continuously ranked around 50 among the national colleges and universities and within the top 10 among the national normal universities. The social sciences study of the University boasts several distinctive and superior disciplines such as Western History and Geography, Ethnic Education, Curriculum and Teaching Theories, Ancient Books Systematization and Dunhuang Studies. The University has also won 432 awards at the provincial and ministerial level and above, among which are 1 national award of "the Five one Program", 2 national third-prize awards and 70 provincial awards for scientific and technological progress, 6 awards conferred by the Ministry of Education for advanced achievements in humanities and social sciences research (among them is 1 first-prize award), 329 provincial awards for advanced achievements in social sciences research and 28 provincial Awards of Dunhuang Literature and Art.
The University takes the initiative to meet the need of local economic and social development, strengthens the applied and soft sciences research, and promotes actively the transformation of research achievements, thus having yielded lots of representative achievements, profitable economic returns and profound social effects. The University has conducted international exchange and cooperation extensively, established cooperative relationships with more than 120 universities, established research institutes and international organizations in more than 40 countries and China Taiwan province as well as Hong Kong Administrative Region, and held more than 50 large-scale international academic conferences and educated more than 1,100 overseas students. Up to now, NWNU has established 2 Confucius Institutes with the University of Khartoum of Sudan and the Free International University of Moldova.
NWNU enjoys a favorable circumstance. Its campus occupies a total area of 960 hectares, and new campus of 729 hectares. It also covers 1800 hectares of greening land and construction compensation land. All of the campus buildings cover a floor space of 737 thousand square meters, 395.8 thousand square meters of which are teaching and auxiliary buildings. The total value of the teaching instruments and equipments is up to 17,067 million Yuan, average value being above 800 Yuan. The university library has a collection of more than 2 million volumes. The University also established a modern network system for public education services, such as the distance education network, the comprehensive teaching affairs management network, the campus computers network, communication network and cable TV network.
The University was honored many times as the "National Advanced Group of Ethnic Education ", "National Advanced Group of Ethnic Unity and Progress", "National Advanced Grassroots Unit of Party Organization" and "National Advanced University of Party Construction and Ideological Work" by the State Council, the Organization Department of CPC Central Committee, the Publicity Department of CPC Central Committee, the Ministry of Education, the State Ethnic Affairs Commission, the Central Committee of the Communist Youth League and Gansu Province.
At present, under the urgent demand of the economic and social development of Gansu Province and the western area as a whole, NWNU is working hard to establish itself as a first-class university targeting at training first-class teachers in western areas, and as a high-level university across China with distinctive academic features and superior disciplines.