Seminar on Strategies and Practical Ways for the Construction of First-class Foreign Language Discipline held at SJTU
Published：2019-05-05 Author：Ren Zhujing, Xu Fan
On April 20th, the Seminar on Strategies and Practical Ways for the Construction of First-class Foreign Language Discipline was held at the School of Foreign Languages, Shanghai Jiao Tong University. Facing the new requirements and expectations of the central government for “Double First-class” discipline construction and higher education reforms in the new era, the seminar addressed the challenges, construction plans and pathways of foreign language discipline development. Attendees included deans and experts of foreign languages colleges from more than 20 universities，including Peking University, Nanjing University and Fudan University, as well as leaders, department heads and teacher representatives of School of Foreign Languages of Shanghai Jiao Tong University.
Seminar on First Level Foreign Language Discipline Construction Plan and Pathways
The seminar included two sessions. The morning session was hosted by Peng Qinglong, Associate Dean of SFL, Yang Feng, Editor-in-Chief of Contemporary Foreign Language Studies, Zhang Honggang, Head of the German Department, and Yang Mingming, Professor of French and Russian Department. The afternoon session was hosted by Yang Bingyan, Head of the English Department, Wu Baohua, Head of the Japanese Department, Zhu Yifan, Director of the Teacher Development Center, Ding Hongwei, Deputy Director of the Language, Intelligence and Neuroscience Research Base, and Professor Shang Biwu, Foreign Academician of Academia Europaea.
Ding Jian, Secretary of CPC SFL Committee, extended sincere welcome to the experts and scholars attending the conference and expressed heartfelt gratitude to the foreign language colleges of peer universities for their long-term support. He said, under the leadership of the university and the school, with the joint efforts of faculties and students, SFL has achieved remarkable results, and will continue to create a new chapter with the strong support inside and outside school in the journey of world-class discipline and university construction.
Ning Qi, Dean of the School of Foreign Languages at Peking University, shared her view on the backwash effect of discipline evaluation on discipline development. She said, facing the new requirements of the national development, we should properly handle the relationships between discipline development and interests orientation, and teaching achievements quality and quantity to truly achieve the long-term development and progress of foreign language disciplines.
Yang Jincai, Dean of the School of Foreign Studies at Nanjing University, stressed the issue of talent cultivation in first level discipline construction, and shared their talent training measures in “Double First-class" construction.
Qu Weiguo, Dean of the College of Foreign Languages and Literature at Fudan University, noted that to ensure the healthy and stable development of China’s foreign language disciplines, we should handle major issues including the characteristics of foreign language disciplines and the core indicators of world-class foreign language disciplines with due attention.
Wang Junju, dean of the School of Foreign Languages and Literature at Shandong University, talked about how to realize the change “from big to strong” in the construction of foreign language disciplines, pointing out that it is critical to move proactively to adapt to new challenges in a down-to-earth style.
Guo Yingjian, Dean of the School of Foreign Languages at Renmin University of China, discussed the pathways of first level discipline construction under the “Double First-class” initiative. He said, professional competence should be the major focus in first-level discipline construction.
Yan Guodong, Dean of the College of Foreign Languages at Nankai University, said that first level foreign language disciplines in comprehensive universities should be built to a higher level with broader vision and higher pursuit, and efforts should be made in teaching, research and employment to match with the “Double First-class” construction of the university.
Ma Xiao, Dean of the School of Foreign Languages and Literature at Wuhan University, shared his view on topics of adult education, talent training, “foreign language +”, AI and big data, and proposed measures to promote interdisciplinary research, strengthen basic disciplines and stress discipline characteristics.
Liu Zhengguang, Dean of the College of Foreign Language at Hunan University, shared their practice of culture building in foreign language discipline construction. By promoting an inclusive and harmonious culture where contribution and personality development are valued, the College has built a strong faculty team and an internationalized talent training system.
Duan Feng, Dean of the College of Foreign Languages and Cultures at Sichuan University, pointed out the necessity of non-first-level foreign language disciplines in comprehensive universities to draw support from and serve the needs of the university’s “Double First-class” construction. He also discussed the issues of talent shortage in China’s western region and the synergetic development of discipline and talent cultivation.
Pan Haiying, Dean of the School of Foreign Language Education at Jilin University, talked about the issues of foreign language discipline positioning, future development and construction in “Double First-class” construction based on their own practice.
Xu Mingwu from the School of Foreign Languages at Huazhong University of Science and Technology delivered a report on the feasibility and replicability of the measures adopted in their research internationalization process.
Chen Xiangjing, Dean of School of Foreign Studies at Xi'an Jiao Tong University, said that when facing development bottlenecks, we should build our own disciplines to improve the teaching quality and serve the needs of university, local and national development and adhere to the path of interdisciplinary and diversified development.
Li Chengjian, Dean of School of Foreign Languages at Southwest Jiao Tong University, introduced their practice and exploration of foreign language discipline construction in the new era in nearly four years, such as building think tank platforms, research centers and engineering translation courses based on school characteristics.
Chen Hongjun, Dean of the School of Foreign Languages at Dalian University of Technology, stressed the characteristic development of foreign language disciplines in universities of science and engineering, for which Shanghai Jiao Tong University has provided a good example.
Chang Hui, Associate Dean of the School of Foreign Languages, Shanghai Jiao Tong University, gave a speech entitled “Construction of Foreign Language Competence Cultivation System”, in which he offered insights into the constructions of core disciplines essential for foreign language competences in second language acquisition, foreign language teaching and foreign language tests as well as support disciplines of theoretical linguistics, psycholinguistics, corpus linguistics and educational technology.
Hu Kaibao, Dean of the School of Foreign Languages, Shanghai Jiao Tong University, concluded the seminar by sharing SFL’s practice in exploring academic frontiers, serving the national needs, constructing traditional disciplines of language testing and corpus, and pursuing interdisciplinary development. He pointed out that appropriate policies should be adopted in first level discipline construction, and sincerely hoped that all participants will continue to follow and support SFL’s development, and share valuable ideas and suggestions in the future.
The seminar covered topics of discipline assessment, funding issues in teaching staff training, enrollment, performance assessments and research paradigms that are directly relevant to first level foreign language discipline construction, providing constructive insights into the construction of foreign language disciplines in Chinese universities.