Sichuan Academy of Social Sciences established its Graduate Faculty in November 1982 with approval of the Publicity Department of Sichuan Provincial Party Committee (approved by Organization Committee of Sichuan Province Graduate Faculty was renamed as Graduate School in March 2007) In 1983 it entered into the records of Chinese Ministry of Education. In 1984 it began to recruit postgraduates and was the earlier organization that enrolled postgraduates. It has 5 primary disciplines which offer master degree, namely, applied economics, law, politics, sociology and Chinese language and literature, and 43 secondary disciplines; Among organizations which are not universities and colleges, it is the third one that offers juris master degree program besides the Party School of the Central Committee of CPC and Chinese Academy of Social Sciences; It jointly recruits and trains doctoral candidates with Sichuan Agricultural University; As a provincial post-doctoral research center, it reaches an agreement of jointly training post-doctors with Southwest University of Political Science and Law, Southwest University of Finance and Economics and Sichuan University. With nearly 400 postgraduates, its enrollment scale is on top among research institutions in southwest China and ranks second among local academies of social science.
Graduate School boasts a qualified faculty of over 200 teachers, including 81 research fellows with senior titles, 92 with vice-senior titles, 24 experts enjoying special government allowance from State Council, 29 leaders in science and technology of Sichuan Province, 44 alternates for science and technology leaders of Sichuan Province, 17 excellent experts with outstanding contributions to Sichuan, 8 doctoral tutors and 61 master tutors.
Erudition, Innovation, Cultivation, Endeavour
After 20-odd years of construction and development, the Graduate School forms a training mode “Teaching Through Research and Research Through Teaching” by taking the advantage of its abundant education resources, advantaged research facilities, high-level tutor team and cutting-edge research topics.
After 20-odd years of construction and development, the Graduate School gradually improves and perfects its education and cultivation system and forms a cultivation mode“unity of discipline construction and degree education , unity of scientific achievements and teaching contents, unity of project research and teaching practice，unity of academic echelon and teacher training, unity of scientific research evaluation and teaching evaluation” which adapts to the feature of research institutions. As a result, it forms the following advantages and characteristics:
First, as to the aim of cultivation, emphasis is to be laid on the improvement of scientific research practice ability and the promotion of professional development. In terms of the cultivation of graduates, local academies of social sciences and education system have a lot in common. They both aim at cultivating all-round graduates with solid foundation of professional knowledge, good foreign language skills and independent scientific research ability. However, SASS’s graduate education has its unique features. When students step into SASS, their research fields are usually linked to their tutors’cutting-edge research projects, so they can enter into the scientific research environment earlier. While studying basic courses and specialized courses, they can further enrich and improve their knowledge structure so that their research ability can be improved quickly and undertake independent scientific research in the shortest time.
Second, SASS preserves in “small batch, high quality”orientation. As research institution, compared with colleges and universities, SASS has unattainable advantage in per capita possession of teachers, research facilities and practical projects. It has become the inherent law for the collaborative development of contemporary high-end scientific research and education that high-level research innovation and the cultivation of high-quality talents adhere to each other and promote the development of the two sides. SASS cultivates high-level creative and innovative talents through scientific research practice. It has always put people first, promoted innovative education, served the country, emphasized all-round quality education and stressed on scientific education as well as graduate students’innovative ability. In this way, graduate students in SASS possess higher research and application ability. They have earlier and easier access to academic frontier and tutor’s strict scientific research training. While at school students generally can participate in more than one research subject and some of them take part in high specification academic exchange. Incomplete statistics show that 1326 postgraduates for 28 years have graduated until July 2014. The employment rate of postgraduates in recent three years has been beyond 90 percent. Among these graduates, there are 67 scholars with vice senior title or senior title, 6 doctoral tutors, 23 master tutors, 2 ministerial officials and provincial heads, 26 bureau-level cadres and 52 county-level cadres. Graduates have yielded fruitful results。During 29 years of postgraduate education, postgraduates have published 1200 academic papers, many of which are reprinted by publications such as Duplicated Materials by People’s University and more than ten academic monographs separately written or co-written win a number of provincial prizes.
Third, government, enterprise, school and research institution jointly train postgraduates. As with scientific research, graduate teaching should “serve the scientific decision of provincial committee and government, serve the economic and social development of the province and serve the improvement of people’s livelihood”. At the beginning of postgraduate education, SASS develops extensive cooperation with government, enterprise, colleges and universities. In general, there are the following cooperation manners: first, employ personnel from four parties as tutor or teacher; second, provide postgraduates with teaching practice base; third, carry out research cooperation; fourth, jointly apply for doctor and master degree authorized units. Students can realize all-round development and meet the needs of market economy through cooperation.
Fourth, cross training instead of single tutor. SASS offers excellent faculty and boasts a number of qualified and highly-experienced experts. The course is taught by more than 70 research fellows, including 10-odd second-level research fellows. The cultivation of postgraduates is guaranteed by a high-level faculty. Compared with colleges and universities, the number of postgraduates instructed by one tutor is far less than that in colleges and universities. However, the cultivation of postgraduates follows dual-tutor system and tutor group system rather than the traditional “one to one”model. Sometimes, even several tutors mentor one student. The instruction by tutors stresses interdisciplinary training instead of being limited by one discipline. For example, management tutors instruct students from Chinese and Foreign Political System major and economics tutor instruct demography major students. Interdisciplinary education greatly improves the innovation ability and compound ability of students so they can better adapt to the realistic demand of contemporary society.
Fifth, it has unique cultural atmosphere conductive to innovation. The cultural atmosphere of SASS differs from that of colleges and universities. Students have more opportunities to participate in social activities and have easy access to social life due to SASS’s close connection to social practice, which provides a unique condition for the cultivation of student’s innovation ability and social adaptability.
SASS is the only local scientific research institution which recruit and train Juris Master；SASS possesses a favorable condition for scientific research and a great number of projects, a wide range of academic exchange and a great deal of opportunities of participation for students; Its scholarship has a wide coverage and there are a few types of rewards(rewards for scientific achievements, core journal papers, embarking on a PHD) ； It covers a wide range of humanity and social science disciplines providing both acidic degree and professional degree; the rate of employment is high and employers give positive feedbacks. Until July 2014, SASS has conferred 1326 mater’s degree and cultivated a great number of students with academic success in postgraduate training classes。These senior talents go to different walks of life and become an important force for theoretical studies, academic research, economic construction and social development.
Training of the Party and government cadres is an important way for SASS to play the role of consultation and education. From 2004, commissioned by the Organization Department of CPC Sichuan Committee, SASS offers “Cadre Self-selection” program for cadres at provincial organs. In 2012, SASS undertakes the training work of “Research on the Construction of New Countryside Complex”. This is an international bidding project of “New Industrialization and Urbanization of Sichuan Province”organized by Sichuan Provincial Committee. SASS is one of the 15 bidders for the project, together with Oxford University, Nanyang Technological University, Zhejiang University, etc. By the end of 2012, SASS has already trained more than 20 thousand cadres.
At present, in accordance of the principle of “Loyalty, Innovation, Openness, Harmony”, the Graduate School of SASS is further deepening the reform, strengthening foreign exchange and cooperation, absorbing advanced school managing experience, pursing “famous school” strategy and striving for better results of all work.