Officially founded on Oct.3, 1950, Renmin University of China (RUC) is the first new type of key university set up by the Communist Party of China. Since then, RUC has evolved into a comprehensive and research university mainly engaged in the study of human, social and management sciences and concurrently involved in the study of information and environmental sciences.
In 1998, RUC established the first online college in China that provides education programs via the Internet --- "Online RUC". Since then, "Online RUC" has set up Teaching and Learning Service Centers in more than 50 cities all over China and enrolled more than 40,000 students in its junior college and undergraduate programs. In Year 2004, in order to reinforce the integration of RUC's online education and continuing education resources and develop itself into a world class online university, RUC merged its Online Education College and the Adult Higher Education College into RUC Continuing Education College. Thanks to the unremitting efforts of more than 7 years, RUC has become one of the domestic leading universities wit its strong capability and excellent quality of online education management and "Online RUC" has become one of China's most influential online colleges.
In 2002, "Online RUC" became the only award winner in the sector of online education of the "Top 10 Chinese Websites" organized by CPCW; in 2003, "Online RUC" was named as one of the "Top 10 Online Education Institutions" by Sina.com; in 2004, "Online RUC" was named as one of the "Top 10 Online Education Institutions" by learning.sohu.com.
Online RUC took the lead in the experimental application of the mode of cooperative school operation with enterprises, which has been proved a success. The mode of cooperative school operation adopted by Online RUC has two key features. The first feature is the establishment of a company called CMR Web-Learning Co., Ltd., an outcome of cooperation between the school and enterprises, chiefly providing technological development and services to the online education program of RUC, and the establishment of a related technical service agreement to clearly define and specify the duties and responsibilities of and the relationships between the College and the Company. The second feature is the introduction of modern enterprise management concepts and mechanism to the internal management of RUC's online education college, aiming to facilitate the College to meet the challenges and tasks arising in the course of online education development with fully promoted quality and efficiency in all aspects.
Based on the general orientation of the College, Online RUC has set up a technological model that is "IP-based, Web-based and designed for practical application" and started to practice the project-based systems and the system of technology development and introduction for routine technological development as well as the commitment system and the service contract system for technical maintenance. Online RUC has independently developed and set up a large-scale 4-in-1 online education platform comprising of the learning resources platform, the teaching platform, the management platform and the campus culture platform and covering scores of subsystems including the Curriculum Development System, Question Database System, Teaching and Learning Service Center Management System, Thesis Management System, Student Status Management System, Teaching Affairs Management, and Tuition Management System and so on.
The teaching process of the online education program of RUC is mainly composed of eleven closely connected steps including textbook-based self-study, online course study, online learning guidance, online question & answer (via real-time voice communication, e-mail, BBS, etc), online discussion (achieved via a special BBS on "Online RUC" Website), online assignment, online simulated self-test, necessary face-to-face tutoring, circuit teaching, centralized examination and graduation thesis. These closely connected teaching processes do not only facilitate a gradual learning progress to the students, but also involve distinct requirements and strict management on the key steps to assure the teaching quality. In terms of teaching management, a brand new management mode based on the teaching management system platform is practiced consisting of the credit unit system, the elective system, the system of flexible length of study, "the system of two terms and four exams in one academic year", the appointment-required examination and question-and-answer system and the system of examination locale changes. The students are thus allowed to select the courses on their own and arrange their study time flexibly in association with the instructional planning and examination plans and based on their own situations and conduct personalized learning relying on the various teaching resources.
In addition to the emphasis laid upon independent learning, Online RUC has also been making continuous efforts in Instructionales to build an online learning environment that supports both collaborative learning and independent and interactive learning and, as a result, the students' individual ideation and abilities of inter-learner communication and tolerance to discrepancy have been further promoted.
In addition to a "five-in-one" teaching faculty consisting of more than 600 discipline experts, lecturers, course tutors, Teaching and Learning Service Center tutors and methodology tutors, Online RUC also boasts of a full-time management team that is very familiar with the features of adult education and includes more than 90 staff members of teaching management, enrollment management, administration as well as the management and financial management of the Teaching and Learning Service Centers directly under the administration of Online RUC.
The Online RUC practices the credit unit system to the full extent. Based on this credit unit system, learners of a three-year junior college education program available for senior high school graduates are supposed to obtain 80 credit units (approximately 17 to 18 courses) within a learning period of 2 to 5 years; learners of a five-year undergraduate education program for senior high school graduates are supposed to obtain 160 credit units (approximately 34 to 35 courses) within a learning period of 4 to 7 years; and learners of a three-year undergraduate education program for junior college graduates are supposed to obtain 80 credit units (approximately 17 to 18 courses) within a learning period of 2 to 5 years.
Students are allowed to graduate if they complete all the compulsory and elective courses as specified and obtain the total number of credit units as required within the specified learning period. In addition, students taking the undergraduate programs may only graduate if their graduation theses are appraised as PASS (inclusive) or above. All graduates of Online RUC Program are granted with the RUC Diploma (for Online Education) and the qualified graduates of the undergraduate programs will be granted with a Bachelor's Degree of the Renmin University of China.