History of education in China
|History of China|
|Neolithic c. 8500 – c. 2070 BCE|
|Xia dynasty c. 2070 – c. 1600 BCE|
|Shang dynasty c. 1600 – c. 1046 BCE|
|Zhou dynasty c. 1046 – 256 BCE|
|Spring and Autumn|
|Qin dynasty 221–206 BCE|
|Han dynasty 206 BCE – 220 CE|
|Three Kingdoms 220–280|
|Wei, Shu and Wu|
|Jin dynasty 265–420|
|Eastern Jin||Sixteen Kingdoms|
|Northern and Southern dynasties
|Sui dynasty 581–618|
|Tang dynasty 618–907|
|(Second Zhou dynasty 690–705)|
|Five Dynasties and
|Northern Song||Western Xia|
|Yuan dynasty 1271–1368|
|Ming dynasty 1368–1644|
|Qing dynasty 1644–1912|
|Republic of China 1912–1949|
|People's Republic of China 1949–present|
This article needs attention from an expert in China. The specific problem is: underdeveloped, poorly sourced, misleading.(April 2017)
The history of education in China began with the birth of the Chinese civilization. Nobles often set up educational establishments for their offspring. Establishment of the Imperial examinations (advocated in the Warring States period, originated in Han, founded in Tang) was instrumental in the transition from an aristocratic to a meritocratic government. Education was also seen as a symbol of power; the educated often earned significantly greater incomes.
- 1 Education System Impact
- 2 Xia, Shang and Zhou Dynasties
- 3 Hundred Schools of Thought
- 4 Han era
- 5 The First Separation Period
- 6 The Sui and Tang Dynasty
- 7 The Second Separation Period and The Song Dynasty
- 8 The Mongolian Dynasty
- 9 Ming Dynasty
- 10 Early modern period
- 11 Qing dynasty
- 12 Modern era
- 13 See also
- 14 References
- 15 Bibliography
Education System Impact
Education was one of the most likely ways for citizens to obtain urban Hukou status, however the difficulty of the entrance exams kept many children with rural Hukou status from progressing. If a child was successful they would be immediately granted urban Hukou status upon admission into high school. Attending high school made it more likely that they would have the opportunity to take China's college entrance exam. Succeeding at the exam and progressing to college made it very likely that the student would obtain a good job, however failure meant that they would return to the countryside, where they would revert back to rural Hukou and peasant status.
Xia, Shang and Zhou Dynasties
The schools to teach the youth nobles were divided into "lower" and "upper". The government founded five national schools to educate Six Arts of junior nobles. It depended on the education of the person, not the government.
Hundred Schools of Thought
At that time, numerous different schools enrolled the students. The most famous one was the Confucianism and its leader Confucius was seen as the founder of education for the masses. One of his sayings was "Provide education for all people without discrimination". Another was "Teach according to the student's ability".
The different schools were often organized into political entities to gain social influence. The most strict system of education belonged to Mohists. Rival scholars were invited to courts; governmental sponsorship led to the development of the first Chinese academies. Importance of education and respect to the teachers was stressed in the Annals of Lü Buwei.
Emperor Wu of Han favored Confucianism and made it as the national educational doctrine. In 124 BC, The Origins of Statecraft in China was set up to turn out civil servant for the state, which taught the Five Classics of Confucianism. The traditional Chinese attitude towards education followed Mencius's advice that "Those who labor with their minds govern others; those who labor with their strength are governed by others." Students selected to gain a government post upon mastering a classic. By 25 CE, the Taixue had an enrollment of 30,000 students, 7,000 faculty, 240 buildings, and 1,850 rooms. Confucian scholars set up their private schools as well.
Meanwhile, art school Pear Garden appeared in early 8th century, and in 1178 national military school was set up.
The First Separation Period
The Sui and Tang Dynasty
The Second Separation Period and The Song Dynasty
The Mongolian Dynasty
Early modern period
Imperial examination began at 605, which required the competitors to pass their local cutting score before the final examination in the capital. So the private school prevailed. White Deer Grotto Academy and Donglin Academy were their models.
Education during the Qing dynasty was dominated by provincial academies, which did not charge tuition fees and gave stipends to preselected students. They were dedicated to the pursuit of independent study of the classics and literature, rather than to the preparation for governance, as was the case with imperial academies. Professors rarely lectured students, instead offering advice and criticizing research.
The near total neglect of engineering, mathematics, and other applied science education by the state contributed to a vast gap in military power between China and the European empires, as evidenced by the outcomes of the First and Second Opium Wars and the Sino–French War amongst others. In response, the Qing embarked on a self-strengthening movement, founding the Tongwen Guan in 1861, which hired foreign teachers to teach European languages, mathematics, astronomy and chemistry. In 1898, Peking University was founded, with a curriculum based on the Japanese system. In 1905, the imperial examinations were abolished. In 1906, American President Theodore Roosevelt passed the Boxer Indemnity Scholarship Program, which diverted overfunding of the Boxer Indemnity toward higher education inside China. Tsinghua University was founded in 1911 by its provisions.
Republic of China
The New Culture Movement of 1919 was a reaction against the Chinese government's emphasis on technical knowledge, and resulted in a new enthusiasm for theoretical knowledge, but with a focus on Western philosophy rather than Confucianism. Education was mostly decentralized in this period, since China was politically disunited, with Chinese warlords and foreign imperialists, especially the Japanese, occupying significant chunks of Chinese territory.
Internal Migration in Communist China was almost nonexistent due to policies put in place by the previous communist government pre 1978. Those pressing policies limited the amount of education that was limited to citizens due to lack of funding, specifically women as mentioned previously, and the type of employment that was available to them, which in most cases indicated factory work that only offered harsh working environments with little pay and to add to the negativity, the salary that the employees were receiving was not even close to being able to afford medical expenses and many of the “popular” organizations did not offer any type of health care for their employees. Regardless of the difficulties China met, several universities were recognized for keeping academic and education excellence during this time period. The so-called Famous four universities were especially well documented during war period, namely the National Central University, the Wuhan University, the Zhejiang University, and the National Southwestern Associated University.
After the Kuomintang's defeat in 1949, the government had retreated to Taiwan. During the first 20 years of Nationalist rule, mandatory schooling consisted of six years of primary school education, which was also the length under Japanese rule. In 1968, the ROC government extended it to nine years.
Jingtang Jiaoyu was a form of Islamic education developed during the Ming dynasty among the Hui, centered around Mosques. The Arabic and Persian language Thirteen Classics were part of the main curriculum. In the madrassas, some Chinese Muslim literature like the Han Kitab were used for educational purposes. Liu Zhi (scholar) wrote texts to help Hui learn Arabic. Persian was the main Islamic foreign language used by Chinese Muslims, followed by Arabic.
The Chinese Muslim Arabic writing scholars Ma Lianyuan 馬聯元 1841-1903 was trained by Ma Fuchu 馬复初 1794-1874 in Yunnan with Ma Lianyuan writing books on law 'Umdat al-'Islām (عمدة الإسلام) شىي ش grammar book on ṣarf (صرف) called Hawā and Ma Fuchu writing a grammar book on naḥw (نحو) called Muttasiq (متسق) and Kāfiya (كافية). Šarḥ al-laṭā'if (شرح اللطائف) Liu Zhi's The Philosophy of Arabia 天方性理 (Tianfang Xingli) Arabic translation by (Muḥammad Nūr al-Ḥaqq ibn Luqmān as-Ṣīnī) (محمد نور الحق إبن لقمان الصيني), the Arabic name of Ma Lianyuan. Islamic names, du'ā' (دُعَاء), ġusl (غسل), prayers, and other ceremonies were taught in the Miscellaneous studies (Zaxue) 雜學 while 'āyāt (آيات) from the Qur'an were taught in the Xatm al-Qur'an (ختم القرآن) (Haiting). Ma Fuchu brought an Arabic Qasidat (Gesuide jizhu 格随德集注) poem to China.
Hui Muslim Generals like Ma Fuxiang, Ma Hongkui, and Ma Bufang funded schools or sponsored students studying abroad. Imam Hu Songshan and Ma Linyi were involved in reforming Islamic education inside China.
Muslim Kuomintang officials in the Republic of China government supported the Chengda Teachers Academy, which helped usher in a new era of Islamic education in China, promoting nationalism and Chinese language among Muslims, and fully incorporating them into the main aspects of Chinese society. The Ministry of Education provided funds to the Chinese Islamic National Salvation Federation for Chinese Muslim's education. The President of the federation was General Bai Chongxi (Pai Chung-hsi) and the vice president was Tang Kesan (Tang Ko-san). 40 Sino-Arabic primary schools were founded in Ningxia by its Governor Ma Hongkui.
Imam Wang Jingzhai studied at Al-Azhar University in Egypt along with several other Chinese Muslim students, the first Chinese students in modern times to study in the Middle East. Wang recalled his experience teaching at madrassas in the provinces of Henan (Yu), Hebei (Ji), and Shandong (Lu) which were outside of the traditional stronghold of Muslim education in northwest China, and where the living conditions were poorer and the students had a much tougher time than the northwestern students. In 1931 China sent five students to study at Al-Azhar in Egypt, among them was Muhammad Ma Jian and they were the first Chinese to study at Al-Azhar. Na Zhong, a descendant of Nasr al-Din (Yunnan) was another one of the students sent to Al-Azhar in 1931, along with Zhang Ziren, Ma Jian, and Lin Zhongming.
Hui Muslims from the Central Plains (Zhongyuan) differed in their view of women's education than Hui Muslims from the northwestern provinces, with the Hui from the Central Plains provinces like Henan having a history of women's Mosques and religious schooling for women, while Hui women in northwestern provinces were kept in the house. However, in northwestern China reformers started bringing female education in the 1920s. In Linxia, Gansu, a secular school for Hui girls was founded by the Muslim warlord Ma Bufang, the school was named Shuada Suqin Wmen's Primary School after his wife Ma Suqin who was also involved in its founding. Hui Muslim refugees fled to northwest China from the central plains after the Japanese invasion of China, where they continued to practice women's education and build women's mosque communities, while women's education was not adopted by the local northwestern Hui Muslims and the two different communities continued to differ in this practice.
Although religious education for children is officially forbidden by law in China, the Communist party allows Hui Muslims to violate this law and have their children educated in religion and attend Mosques while the law is enforced on Uyghurs. After secondary education is completed, China then allows Hui students who are willing to embark on religious studies under an Imam. China does not enforce the law against children attending Mosques on non-Uyghurs in areas outside of Xinjiang. Since the 1980s Islamic private schools (Sino-Arabic schools (中阿學校)) have been supported and permitted by the Chinese government among Muslim areas, only specifically excluding Xinjiang from allowing these schools because of separatist sentiment there.
People's Republic of China
After coming to power in 1949, the Communist authorities brought the educational system under national control. They condemned excessive study of the humanities and social sciences, considering them wasteful and deleterious to China's industrialization. The Chinese Academy of Sciences was set up the year the Communists came into power. Education was reformed following the Soviet model, and small engineering departments were amalgamated into giant polytechnic institutes such as Tsinghua University and Tianjin University. Education became highly specialized, with students studying subjects like "railway bridge construction."
Since the 1990s the Soviet model has been largely abolished in China, with many universities expanding or merging with others to provide more comprehensive education in parallel with specialized technical training.
Communist moral education versus informal career education was another struggle within itself. Due to such communist control, continued government education wasn’t an option for most. That also includes females. “Most of factory girls believed they were so poorly educated that taking a class wouldn’t help.” With that being said, many still decided to take night schooling along with working in factories to help better themselves. Eventually it started to become more common between workers to start changing work schedules between one another to help make the extra time needed for education. However, creating the personal time needed for such independent success was not easy. “The post socialist state has further controlled workers’ self-organization and, consequently, wages to facilitate low-cost exports.”. Migrant workers were also highly important to this operation making up over 75%.
- Academies (China)
- Guozijian (Imperial Academies)
- Hanlin Academy
- Boxer Indemnity Scholarship Program
- Imperial examination
- Imperial examination in Chinese mythology
- Education in the People's Republic of China
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- Traditional China
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- Educational Exchange
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