University description (as per official university website)
Shanghai International Studies University (SISU) was founded in December 1949 as the former Shanghai Russian College. It later was named the Shanghai Foreign Language Institute and became a national key university approved by the State Council in 1963. Approved by the Ministry of Education in 1994, it was officially renamed as “Shanghai International Studies University”. In the same year, it was listed as one of the first colleges and universities jointly supervised by the national Ministry of Education and the Municipality of Shanghai. In 1996, it passed the evaluation process of Project 211 directed by the Ministry of Education, and became one of the nation’s “100 key universities for the 21st Century.”
Shanghai International Studies University is a research, teaching, and multidisciplinary comprehensive university, committed to cultivating foreign language elites with “high-quality, multiple skills, international vision, spirit of innovation, and capacity of practice”. Having a long tradition of conscientious teaching and learning, SISU enjoys a very good reputation both at home and abroad.
Now, SISU has two campuses in Hongkou and Songjiang. The Hongkou campus is located in the center of Shanghai, covering 16.9 hectares with elegant surroundings. The Songjiang campus is in Shanghai's Songjiang New District, covering an area of 53.3 hectares, with a picturesque environment.
At present, SISU has a full-time enrollment of over 1,400 postgraduate students, 6,000 undergraduates, 800 college students, and 1,200 international students. There are also 25,000 other types of registered students in various programs.
SISU has a faculty with significant academic prestige and educational experience. The full-time teachers number more than 500, including more than 300 professors and associate professors as well as a group of young and middle-aged outstanding lecturers.
Colleges and Departments
SISU comprises colleges and departments that offer associate, bachelor, bachelor and postgraduate programs, programs for adults, network programs and programs for international students, as well as several research institutes. There are 20 teaching colleges and departments: College of English Language and Literature, College of Japanese Culture and Economy, College of Oriental Language and Literature, the Russian Department, French Department, German Department, College of Western Languages, College of International Finance and Trade, College of International Business, College of Journalism and Communication, the Law School, College of International Education, College of International Cultural Exchange, Graduate Institute of Interpretation and Translation, the Graduate School, the Network Institute of Education, Vocational and Technical College, College of Advancing Education, Overseas Cooperation Institute (Chinese-foreign joint collaboration), and Xianda Economics and Humanities College (private independent college). There are four related teaching departments: Department of Physical Education, Department of Social Sciences, the Overseas Training Department (formerly called the Preparatory Department), and Department of Personnel Overseas Group Training.
Disciplines, Majors and Programs
SISU has five major disciplines: literature, education, economics, management and law. It provides thirty-one bachelor programs (seventeen language programs: English, Russian, German, French, Spanish, Arabic, Japanese, Persian, Korean, Thai, Portuguese, Greek, Italian, Swedish, Dutch, Indonesian, and Teaching Chinese as a Foreign Language; fourteen comprehensive programs: translation, international business & trade, finance, law, international politics, educational technology, journalism, radio & television news, advertising, information management & information system, business administration, accounting, English teaching and public relations; additionally, another three language programs have been approved for recruitment, which are Hebrew, Vietnamese and Ukrainian), twenty-three master’s programs (English language & literature, Russian language & literature, French language & literature, German language & literature, Japanese language & literature, Spanish language & literature, Arabic language & literature, foreign linguistics & applied linguistics, comparative literature & world literature, international relations, international trade, business management, educational technology, journalism, European language & literature, linguistics & applied linguistics, modern & contemporary Chinese literature, diplomacy, translation, Asian & African language & literature, communication, international politics, ideological & political education).
There are also nine second-tier Ph.D. programs (English language & literature, Russian language & literature, French language & literature, German language & literature, Japanese language & literature, Arabic language & literature, translation, international relations, foreign linguistics & applied linguistics; among which translation is the only master’s and Ph.D. program in China, and international relations is the only non-language Ph.D. program in a language school), one first-tier Ph.D. program (foreign languages & literature), and one postdoctoral center (foreign language & literature).
SISU attaches great importance to fundamental foreign language teaching. The programs and the curriculum are constantly optimized and updated. The scope of each program is being further expanded. The latest teaching approaches and management expertise are in use. The programs offered are categorized into three types, namely comprehensive programs (language + specialty), bilingual programs (English + another foreign language) and professional programs (English + a profession). Tutorship and credit systems are adopted for undergraduate students.
Research Centers, Institutes and Journals
SISU advocates academic research. Especially in recent years, constant achievements have been made in academic research. The academic papers, books, textbooks and reference books have won many awards in nationwide appraisals.
SISU has one national research center of humanities & social sciences (Middle Eastern Studies Institute), one undergraduate education base of non-universal languages (Italian, Portuguese and Greek), two national key programs (English and Russian), one national developing key program (Arabic), and two Shanghai key programs (Arabic and international relations). Now SISU is a major unit of the Ministry of National Education of the University of Foreign Language Teaching Steering Committee.
More than ten research institutes and academic groups have been established, including the Research Institute of International Relations and Foreign Affairs, Middle Eastern Studies Institute, Institute of Linguistic Studies, Institute of Literature Studies, the SISU Intercultural Institute, the America Research Center, Canada Research Center, German Region Research Center, New Zealand Research Center, etc. The scope of research includes foreign language and literature, international politics, economics, and cultures.
SISU also publishes many influential Chinese journals (listed in the CSSCI), including the Journal of Foreign Languages, Foreign Language World, International Observation, Arabic World Research, and Educational Technology for Foreign Language Teaching. A new co-sponsored international journal has also been launched, the Journal of Middle Eastern and Islamic Studies (in Asia).
Exchange, Resources and Contributions
Advocating international academic exchange and cooperation, SISU has entered into partnerships with more than 100 renowned universities in over 30 countries and regions. Quite a few foreign government leaders have visited SISU and many world celebrities are appointed as part-time professors. Every year, SISU sends its outstanding students to study abroad. Students of SISU have been invited to many important academic forums held at home and abroad.
The SISU library has 900,000 books as well as about 2,000 kinds of Chinese and foreign newspapers and periodicals. It has established the Ministry of Education Arts and Literature Information Center, the Oxford English Teaching Information Center, and the Asian Foundation Book Giving Distribution and Transshipment Center.
Many scholarships, loans and financial support are provided. Chances of part-time jobs are offered to help students fulfill their study. With specialized skills, students are enthusiastic about internships in every field. Meanwhile, students are cultivated and nourished by the kaleidoscope of campus life and university culture of SISU.
Aiming to equip students with a good command of foreign languages, comprehensive knowledge and skills, and striking characters, SISU focuses on enhancing students’ social adaptability and competitiveness by improving their overall abilities. Thus SISU students have obtained obvious advantages in the labor market.
SISU owns the Shanghai Foreign Language Education Press and Shanghai Foreign Language Audiovisual Publishing House. The School Education Technology Center is equipped with advanced teaching facilities and means, including satellite ground receiving devices, closed-circuit television systems, simultaneous interpretation system, and language laboratories, etc.
Over the past nearly sixty years since its establishment, SISU has turned out a great number of visionary and innovative professionals featuring both language proficiency and comprehensive skills. They are found all over the world. In the future, SISU is striving to become a high-level multidisciplinary international research and teaching foreign language university.