Introduction to Shaanxi Normal University
Directly administered by the Ministry of Education of China, Shaanxi Normal University (SNNU, website: www.snnu.edu.cn/), a key university under the construction plan of China’s national “211 Project” and a university under China’s Innovation Platform Construction Plan of the“985” Superior Discipline of Teacher Education, is a major base for training teachers and administrators of higher learning institutes and secondary schools as well as other high-level professionals in China, and is known as the “Cradle of Teachers” in Northwest China.
The University, situated in the ancient capital city of Xi’an, one of the four internationally renowned historical and cultural cities, was founded in 1944 under its original name “Shaanxi Provincial Teachers’ College”, and then renamed “Xi’an Teachers’ College” in 1954. In 1960, it merged with “Shaanxi Teachers’ College” to become “Shaanxi Normal University”. In 1978, it was brought under the direct administration of the Ministry of Education of China.
During its more than 70-year history in education, the University, while rooted in China’s West, has embraced the whole country, developed a school spirit of “Morality, Learning, Aspiration and Action” and has seen itself become firmly established in Western China as an influential top-tier comprehensive teachers training university, as it strives to achieve the goal of building itself to be a major comprehensive research university distinguished by its teacher education.
The University currently has 17,502 full-time undergraduate students and 17,343 postgraduate students, with more than 66,000 students in continuous education and long-distance learning programs, as well as more than 1,100 international students. Over the years, more than 300,000 students have graduated from SNNU.
The University currently has 1,752 full-time teachers, among whom there are 475 full professors and 696 associate professors, with 71% of them holders of doctoral degrees. The University offers 18 first-degree doctoral programs, 41 first-degree master’s programs, one professional doctoral degree program (Doctor of Education), and 24 professional master’s programs (including nine areas in Master of Engineering).
It has four national key disciplines, two national talent cultivation and research base in basic disciplines, one National Engineering Laboratory, one Ministry of Education humanities and social science research base, four Ministry of Education key laboratories and engineering research centers, one State Sports Administration Sports Sociology key research base, 17 Shaanxi Provincial key laboratories and engineering research centers, five Shaanxi Provincial key humanities and social science research bases, 12 Shaanxi Provincial laboratory teaching demonstration centers, as well as 60 other research centers and institutions.
Xi’an (Panorama) is the capital of Shaanxi Province and the oldest of the Four Great Ancient Capitals, having held the position under several of the most important dynasties in Chinese history. It is about 2 hours by air from Beijing and 2 hours from Shanghai. Known as the leading city of China’s Western Development Drive Program since 1990s, Xi’an is an important economic, cultural, industrial and educational center of the central-northwest region, providing visitors with modern and convenient facilities.
Xi’an was the eastern terminus of the Silk Road, and played a very important part in Chinese history. Today Xi’an is one of the most important and convenient transportation hubs in central and western China. Frequent flights, trains and buses connect the city with other major cities all around the country. The urban transportation of the city has been somewhat frustrating in recent years because of the metro construction. Now metro line 1, line 2 and line 3 are in operation. Several other lines are also under construction or in the planning process. For now the buses and taxis can take you to get around the city.
Xi’an is a foodie paradise, with excellent restaurants serving local and international cuisine. You can’t come to Xi’an without sampling the following: savory, often spicy roujiaomo “burgers”; DIY roupaomo, a soupy concoction of bread in mutton stew; cumin-laden meat skewers in the Muslim Quarter; and refreshing liangpi rice noodles with peanut sauce, perfect for cooling down in the heat of summer. Make sure to visit the night market to explore the flavors of Shaanxi street food.