High School Education
middle schools and universities in Shanghai
Since 1978, China has adopted the education policy of "nine-year
compulsory schooling system", which means all children
are required to attend school for at least nine years. During
the period, students will finish both the primary school
program and the junior middle-school program. For higher
education, students must pass examinations of all levels.
First, one should pass the entrance examination for senior
middle schools or middle-level technical schools. Then after
two, three or four years, one may sit in for the national
college entrance examination which usually take place on
July 7 to 9. Due the grueling weather and the stress
one bears all those days, the month of July is widely nicknamed
the "black July."
- Pre-school Education
Children aged from 3 to 6 usually attend kindergartens
near their neighborhoods, where they learn the basics
of the native language. And since most of the teachers
are female, they are told to play games of all kinds,
learn to dance, to sing and to act. Besides, the inculcation
of values and virtues such as "Truth, Kindness and
Beauty" into the children is one of the top priorities
on the teaching agenda among kindergartens
and child care centers throughout the country.
- Primary School Education
Previously the primary school education requires 5 years
and now has been lengthened to six years. During the period,
pupils are required to take a variety of subjects such
as the Chinese language, fundamental mathematics and moral
education. They are also taught to take part in sports
and extra-curriculum activities. In
recent years, foreign languages such as English become
an optional course in the later part of this six-year
- High School Education
This part of education is divided into two parts: three-year
junior high school program and senior. From junior high
school, students begin to learn a variety of science subjects
such as chemistry, physics and biology. Besides, they
are taught the Chinese history and that of foreign countries.
Geography is also a required course. Educators of all
levels attach great importance to the teaching of English---the
official second language---in most of the high schools.
At the same time, physical education is enthusiastically
Senior high school education is a continuation of that
in junior high schools. But it is more than that. Students
begin to take greater interest in some specific subject
and they are encouraged to do so. In order to create more
competition among them, a variety of contests are organized
annually in all levels. The "Olympic Series"
are the most noticeable ones. Despite this, the most important
thing for them is the preparation
for the national college entrance examination. Usually,
two sets of examinations are designed out of the consideration
that students are labeled as science students or arts
- Higher Education
The main task of higher education in China is to train
specialists for all the sectors of the country's development.
Universities, colleges and institutes, which make up China's
higher educational system, offer four- or five-year undergraduate
programs as well as special two-or three year programs.
Students who have completed a first degree may apply to
enter graduate schools.
China's institutions of higher learning operate on a centralized
enrolment system in which admissions committees at the
provincial level operate under the aegis of the Ministry
of Education. As a rule, admission is granted on the basis
of academic, physical and moral qualifications, though
allowances are made for minority nationality and overseas
The nationwide examinations are given during the first
ten days of July. The tests themselves, issued by the
Ministry of Education, fall into two categories: the humanities,
and the sciences and engineering. While candidates may
sit for only one of the two, they may list the institutions
and departments they wish to enter in order of preference.
Enrolment is then determined in the light of examination
results. Nonetheless, an brief investigation into their
social behavior and moral character is conducted before
students are admitted to institutions of higher learning.
In a number of fields, specific physical requirements
must be met.
Chinese university students are provided with on-campus
dormitories free of charge, where they live and study during
the week, China provides free education at the university
level, and those students whose families have financial
difficulties receive subsidies. The dormitory, which forms
an important part of university life, is run by the students
themselves through the students' union under the China Students'
Federation, to which all enrolled students belong. In recent
years, the number of pay students increases because of the
Educational programs carried out since the founding of the
People's Republic of China in 1949 have paved the way for
universal education in China. The focus of China's educational
policy is to improve the country's intellectual outlook
and bring about competent students in all aspects of China's