The cost of maintenance and other expenses are taken care of. In 1953, only 182 of the 221 universities continued to exist and 14 of the 49 comprehensive universities remain. All private and missionary universities are reorganized or taken over. This reorganisation involves the transformation of old universities and colleges; the establishment of new special colleges; the concentration of personnel, facilities, and funds to form new colleges and departments. The idea behind this reorganization is specialization. Single-field engineering colleges prepared the stu-dents for more specialized disciplines than multi-field polytechnical universities. Wang (2015) gives an example ".., in 1954 the major of railway engineering had four sub-majors, namely, railway construction, railway lines and business, railway houses, and water supply and drainage of railways. Some people even proposed setting two sub-majors under railway construction -railway location design and building. Specialization was highly valued, for example, in 1954 when examining the teaching plan of the majors of railway engineering and the majors of railway, bridge and tunnel design, the reform decided to cancel unnecessary courses which had little relation to the cultivating objects and courses which was not needed immediately for the current technology, such as thermal and electrical operation and automatic control in power engineering. On the contrary, professional courses should increase their study hours. For example, to strengthen the two specialized courses, water supply and drainage in railway engineering, the courses “railway location design” and “railway construction” should be combined into “railway location design and construction”, and “bridge and tunnel design” should put into “introduction to bridge and tunnel”. In this way, professional courses were greatly reinforced to cultivate engineers with more specialized engineering knowledge and skills for certain job positions.156"
An instrument to reach this goal of building a socialist economy is the on November 1, 1949, founded Chinese Academy of Sciences. (CAS as in real institute is founded in 1955). This is the result of the investigation
made in October 1949 in the SU, where he explored the Soviet Academy of Sciences, the Russian system for planning scientific research, and the connection between science and technology. The Chinese Academy of Sciences incorporated the Academia Sinica (1928), consisting mainly of scientists who had studied in the United States, and the Beijing Academy (1929), consisting mainly of European-trained scientists. June 20-26 of 1950, the first Administrative Affairs Meeting of the Chinese Academy of Sciences was held in Beijing, it decided to focus on long-term based research plans.
Chen Boda (1904-1989) deputy chief of the Communist Party Propaganda Department and vice-president of the Marx-Lenin Institute
Besides the CAS, following the Soviet model, research academies in various ministries have been set up. "For example, the Ministry of Health founded the Chinese Academy of Medical Sciences in 1950 and the Chinese Academy of Traditional Chinese Medicine in 1955. Each of the industrial ministries set up its own specialized research institutes and laboratories in many of the major industrial enterprises as well. The Ministry of Agriculture established the Chinese Academy of Agricultural Sciences and research institutes for agricultural sciences in provinces. " March 8, 1954, The CCP stated explicitly that "the State Planning Commission takes the responsibility to review the plans for the Academy of Sciences, the production department and the institutions of higher education in terms of their scientific research for the purpose to solve the problems arising from the combination of scientific research and the production practices and the issues in all aspects regarding the assignment and cooperation during the scientific research."46
About 60% of the associates of the CAS are former members of the Academia Sinica and Beijing Academy. Many intellectuals, scientists, and technologists had left the mainland during the turbulent period of 1933-1949. The CAS reckons the repatriation of these persons as one of their main tasks. This attempt results in the return of 2000 US trained scientists and engineers. For example,
"At the beginning of 1950, he escaped the USA secret police notice and the Hong Kong Kuomintang’s kidnap, ignored the superior’s persuading to stay, resigned firmly from the occupation of the United Nations, and took flight to Hong Kong straightly. With the concern of Premier Zhou Enlai, his family finally went back to Guangzhou" In 1955 of the 172 elected members of the CAS, 84 had a US academic background. Only 17 are CCP members. (19 CAS members had been chosen in the CPPCC National Committee of 1949 and 3 in the standing committee of the 1949 CPPCC) The selection for membership of the CAS is founded on three criteria: academic achievement, promotion of discipline, and loyalty to the people’s cause, with the first being the most important. Cao (2004) remarks "Candidates for social science membership were examined politically to see whether they supported socialism and the CCP and whether they applied Marxism to their research, criteria more stringent than loyalty to the people’s cause " Ultimately the CCP approves the candidates.
Ye Xipei (1902-1971) metallurgist.
The united front policy of the CCP during the civil war had ensured that many intellectuals had anti-GMD feelings (see also
, einem Fachmann der Partei für Bildungsfragen, der bald stellvertretender Erziehungsminister und Leiter des Parteikomitees im Ministerium werden sollte, wurde dieses Unterkomitee für Kultur in verschiedene Sektionen für Bildung, Literatur und Künste, Museen und Presse aufgeteilt. Qian selber übernahm auch die Sektion für Bildung." Yao (1989) states "Scientists were fairly well respected in the first years of the People’s Republic. And after the experience of a long period of social upheaval they, in turn, appreciated the stable research environment. In that period, before the emergence of other scientific research venues and formats, the CAS scientists were the “seed” and “locomotive" of scientific activity throughout the country." The role of the intellectuals changes from an active force in the political arena to a passive group to be acted on. Huang (1991) notices a decline in the number of professors in absolute numbers and percentages (1952: 30%, in 1953: 23%, and in 1954: 20%).
Qian Junrui (1908-1985) Economist
Directly after the take over the CCP only changed the GMD ideology into communist thought at the universities. However already in 1950 the period of laissez-faire was over. The western inspiration has to disappear and the SU is considered a new role model. Li (2012) cites "The socialist Soviet Union has gained success with the most advanced theory of mankind, Marxist Leninism, and with a proletarian worldview and methodology. Whether in politics, economy, culture, science, art, and so on, it represents the most advanced ideas and techniques of mankind, strong evidence of its infinite potential for development. For this reason, all progressive countries of the world, all specialists and scholars who truly love their countries and their people, are ardently learning Russian. Without learning Russian, we cannot fully assimilate the most advanced ideas and techniques of mankind, we cannot become true scholars and specialists, nor can we do well in our own country’s revolutionary cause and reconstruction." In September 1951, the CAS, under the pressure of the CCP started a political reeducation program. The Korean War reinforces the anti-western feelings and scientists are pressed to discard ‘hostile feudal ideas’ and ‘bourgeois’ ideologies which are inspired by western educated researchers. (see
Two outstanding cases of this SU influence are the founding of the Renmin University and the reconstruction of Harbin Institute of Technology in 1950. The Renmin University is based on the principle of ‘connecting teaching with practice, combining Soviet experience and Chinese circumstances.’ and “adopt advanced Soviet experience in development and invite Soviet professors to train all kinds of cadres for the construction of the new country.” It became a model for a completely new style of higher education for universities throughout the country. The courses given are: Economic Planning, Factory Management, Finance-Credit, Cooperatives, Trade, Law, Diplomacy, and Russian. All students are required to follow lessons in Foundations of Marxism-Leninism, Dialectical and Historical Materialism, and Political Economy. Most of these teachings are given by SU specialists. (in 1950: 37 SU) The relation between the SU and the Chinese students caused several problems. "...,difficulties at Renda are not attributed to the experts but to those Chinese who “adopt an arrogant attitude” and are unwilling to learn from the Soviet instructors, to insufficient Chinese efforts to acquaint the Soviet experts with Chinese conditions, and to difficulties with the Chinese translators.16 Thus, in each case, responsibility for making the relationship work seemed to be a matter for the Chinese side guided by the principle that the Soviet experts could “do no wrong.” " Measurements are taken to overcome these problems by criticizing conservatism or empiricism (in other words rejecting SU advice) and criticizing dogmatism (in other words considering SU advice as the ‘holy grail’). Pepper (1990) shows the pitfall "In this manner, the earlier much-criticized practice of relying wholly on unrevised Western teaching materials reproduced itself in the early 50s. Now, however, even the precise methods of instruction for each course were prescribed from Soviet practice." " As Renmin University and Harbin Institute of Technology were approved by the central government to learn from the USSR, these two universities served as models for reforming Chinese institutions of higher education. Every year, they provided seminars led by Soviet professors for teachers and professors all over the country.47 Likewise, many universities were restructured along lines proven at these universities. Thus, Renmin University and HIT were established as flagship universities for post-secondary education reform in the Russian model."
paid a visit to the SU. The major institution that the delegation visits is the Soviet Academy of Sciences. After their return, the CAS increases the number of Russian reading courses, increases the number of delegations to the SU and invites more Soviet experts. Guo (2020) remarks the visit was not perfect, the delegation had limited understanding of Soviet science, especially their knowledge on defense and military technology. Meanwhile, the exchange of students starts, those students have to meet the following criteria for selection "(1) political loyalty; (2) academic record and potential; (3) family background; and (4) a social network that had no ‘political problem’.45 After 1953, China held a nationwide test to select students for the Soviet Union, including a screening process that was extremely competitive."
Qian Sanqiang (1913-1992) Nuclear physics.
CAS started to receive Soviet experts after the signing of the accord for technical and scientific cooperation in October 1954 in Beijing. This agreement covers the free exchange of technical resources, including technical and scientific reports, technical experts and aid, and the latest information about scientific and technologic results. Most experts are male, some are allowed to bring family. Their motivation to go to China varies in terms of adventure, luxury, and conviction. The scientific cooperation between both countries had economic value for both. Particularly southern China was of interest for the SU, because it was the only large tropical area in the Eastern Block. In fact, it was in response to a special request from the Soviet requirement that the Chinese government initiated a large-scale project on the utilization of tropical resources in southern China, including integrated surveys on tropical biological resources conducted by the CAS with participation of Soviet scientists. Lac and rubber were the main tropical resources, in March 1953 the SU sent a delegation to explore the region. Natural rubber remained a very popular and strategic product. Pepper (1990) notes not only the structure of the education system is copied from the SU but also the teaching material. "Also following the Soviet example, nationally unified teaching plans, syllabuses, materials, and textbooks were introduced for every academic specialty or major. The content was based on translations of Soviet equivalents, which were sometimes simply reproduced verbatim."
The growing influence of the SU had more drawbacks. Politics interfere increasingly in science, Soviet scientists are looked up and have more privileges, (See
Before and after 1949, the scientists tried to keep their autonomy. The GMD government aspired to sinification, standardization, and specialization of the university curriculum, and most professors demanded more freedom. After 1949, the CCP tries to seek control. "Thus, when the CCP equally called for a standardization of the curriculum, installed mandatory political education courses and study groups with the aim of coordinating the political consciousness of those involved in educating a new generation of socialist-trained intellectuals, hardly anyone would have been taken by surprise – similar attempts had after all already been made under the exiled GMD government in Chongqing." From October 1949 on, all students of university departments of history, philosophy, education, economics, law, literature, and political studies have to take college on 1. Dialectical materialism and historical materialism (including a short history of social development) (first semester, 3 hours per week), 2. On New Democracy (including the history of modern Chinese revolutionary movements) (second semester, 3 hours per week), and 3. Politics and economics (starting from the second year of study for one total year of study, 3 hours per week).
Lee (2008) describes the dispute between militant CCP cadres and soft-liners. The militants believe that professors could not be trusted because of their bourgeois background and strong measures should be taken against them. The soft-liners made a distinction between anti-CCP behavior and bourgeois ideas. "For them, since most professors were not opposed to the CCP and their expertise was valuable, the party should work with them and let them gradually overcome their bourgeois ideas through their own effort at thought remolding." Yang (2018) notices some other obstacles "In the early 1950s, public institutions in the ﬁelds of education, culture and hygiene faced certain problems like excessive size of staff, too many personnel, too high rate of administrators, too high criteria for building and facilities, too low of utilization of facilities, wastage of funds. So it was important to ﬁx the number of persons and set quotas of facilities." Yamada (1971) ascertains "By far the most irritating and serious disruptions to research were neither the excessive number of required meetings nor the extra administrative duties. Most scientists were annoyed by the feigned superiority, exclusiveness, hostility, and distrust openly displayed by party members toward specialists and their work. Party members generally lacked understanding or sympathy for research and the scientists remained a source of irritation. A closer look at the intelligentsia as a class reveals that they were, indeed, considerably different from the average party member in both background and outlook."
The introduction of Lysenkoism in the People's Republic of China is exemplary for the consequences of the 'rucksichlos' introduction of Soviet ideas.
did experimental research on improved crop yields. Stalin backed his studies because due to the famine and loss of productivity resulting from forced collectivization in the 1930s, his projects seemed promising. Lysenko rejects the ideas of
Lysenko (1898-1976) Soviet Union. He rejected Mendelian genetic inheritance theory and promoted to plant seeds very close together since, according to his "law of the life of species", plants from the same "class" never compete with one another.
whose ideas are internationally accepted. In the context of "learning from the SU” 'Morganism’ is rejected in the People's Republic of China and Lysenko’s report “The situation in biological science” is translated in 1949 and is considered mandatory in biology departments of the universities. Several SU biologists (followers of Lysenko) are invited to teach in China. Lectures which treat the ideas of Mendel, Weismann, and Morgan are forbidden and labeled “bourgeois,” “reactionary,” “idealistic,” “metaphysical,” and “pseudoscientific.” The SU encouragement of
Morgan (1866-1945) US. He laid the foundation of the science of genetics.
is a key element in the promotion of the “Sino-Soviet Friendship”. It is the showcase of SU science. This scientific approach of agriculture is considered a way to produce a surplus to finance the heavy industry (see
Ivan Michurin (1855 - 1935) Soviet Union. He introduced scientific agricultural selection. During the Lysenkoism campaign, work by Michurin was misused, after his death, by the Soviet propaganda as an argument against genetics.
And although increasingly critical SU comments started to appear in the People's Republic of China "…until late 1954 censorship and tight control prevented the press from publishing any translations from Soviet publications that were critical of Michurinist biology. This period saw recurrent public reprimands accusing biologists of violating the Party’s support of Michurinist biology. Some of the most severe reprimands were pitched at near-hysterical levels and were attenuated over months and even years. Miscreants were subjected to re-education sessions and their offending publications were taken out of circulation and destroyed." This violent introduction of Michurinist biology provokes much criticism from scientists. In an editorial of the Renmin Ribao of June 29, 1952, the CCP states his opinion. It is an attempt to restore the relation with Chinese scientists and to uphold the SU theory. "A good Marxist-Leninist takes diﬀerent approaches to politics and to science; so it is therefore thoroughly inappropriate to generalize and say that all of the ‘‘old biology’’ is idealist, reactionary, in service to the bourgeoisie, or fascist." and the newspaper concluded "In the new China, Morgan is not wanted; Michurin is." It takes two more years before the first Chinese translations of SU critics, are distributed in People's Republic of China, and in December 1954 the Science Gazette (CAS magazine) circulates the debates nationwide. Not only the ideas of Morgan are banned, even the ideas of Einstein are questioned. In 1947, the Renmin Ribao called Einstein “the world’s most renowned progressive scientist” and applauded his protest against U.S. militarism. Under the influence of the SU this opinion changes and in 1953 Einstein’s interpretation of relativity is condemned. After the death of Stalin, this opinion changes again with the acceptance of relativity and other scientific contributions of Einstein, but he is still criticized for his confusing and idealist worldview. The observations of Wang (2015) are worth citing "The idea that the “today of the Soviet Union is the future of China” once gave countless Chinese people a bright vision of future, and the national policy of “leaning to one side” made China blindly worship the Soviet Union and Soviet experts in the Cold War. In 1954, when Soviet experts helped China manage the Yellow River construction planning, they held that conserving water and soil and blocking mud could make the river clear. Russia did not have rivers with as much silt as the Yellow River in China. The Yellow River was in China, and no people had a better understanding of the merits and demerits of the Yellow River and difficulties as well as the success and failure of water control there than the Chinese people. However, one sentence from Soviet experts made people take action to clear the river. Thus decisions that historically were never taken, were immediately decided. For example, the Japanese and the KMT had discussed the Sanmenxia dam project, and it was studied after the liberation, but the decision to dam the river was not made.97 When Soviet experts said it was possible, the decision was made quickly." He concludes "However, the project caused serious problems soon after it was finished due to its design defects - it had to be rebuilt, which indicated severe mistakes in the original decision-making."
On October 1, 1951, The People's Republic of China adopted the gaokao system (the National College Entrance Exam). It is mostly taken by senior high school graduates and their final score decides in which kind of college or university they can be registered at. Before this time, each university had its own admission procedure. With the introducing of the nationwide gaokao system the centralization of the entrance examinations is completed. "Situace byla nicméně ve ... se … stále poněkud roztříštěná, jelikož nedošlo ke standardizaci zkoušek. Jejich centralizace byla navíc pouze částečná, protože si univerzity nadále sestavovaly přijímací zkoušky dle vlastních požadavků,.." Graduated students with diplomas from any public or private senior secondary school, senior normal schools, secondary technical schools, and senior vocational schools can make an application for taking part in the examinations. Taylor (1973) remarks "In 1954 nine examination subjects were named: the national language, political general knowledge, a foreign language (English or Russian), mathematics, physics, chemistry, biology, history and geography.66 In addition to the compulsory subjects of national language, political knowledge, and a foreign language,67 the examinations were divided into two parts. Those applying for entry in the Sciences, engineering, medicine, agriculture and forestry specialties were examined in mathematics, physics, chemistry, and biology. Candidates in the humanities, political Science and law, and finance and economics were to be tested in history and geography.68" and he continues the political examination is designed to discover personal opinions on particular current issues. The essay topic is awarded for its ideological content and has to have a political subject. For example, in 1953 the essay subject was ‘Recalling a revolutionary cadre whom I have known’ Otsuka (1998) notices "However, the cadre members of the People's Liberation Army and other administrative units who were already receiving supplementary courses are also admitted. This is one of the distinctive features left which has a strong transitional flavor. They only took entrance examinations in the subjects that had been part of the supplementary courses, and if they passed they were distributed among the universities preferentially. " Likewise, industrial workers, revolutionary cadres, ethnic minority students, and overseas Chinese students could count on some lenience. Soviet advisors introduced the Workers-Peasant Accelerated Middle Schools. On April 3, 1950, the first Workers-Peasant Accelerated Middle School was opened, it was part of the Beijing University. Its purpose was to prepare children of workers and peasant background to study at universities. The courses have a length of 3 to 4 years. These schools are seen as a remedy to reduce the US influence and break the resistance against the new social order in universities. Besides, it should give children of workers and peasants the possibility to study in universities. The students had to be sons and daughters of outstanding worker-peasant cadres or workers who had participated in the revolution or industrial workers with experience. They had to be not older than 35 and in excellent health. At the end of 1950 twenty-four schools are founded and in 1954 there are 87 schools with 51.000 students. Only 0,4% have a peasant background. Workers-Peasant Accelerated Middle Schools are not a success, their academic standard is low and therefore are unable to raise the number of worker-peasant child students at universities. Two reasons can be mentioned, first, the low educational level of the the students who enrolled in the Workers-Peasant Accelerated Middle Schools, partly because 'retired' revolutionaries are sent to these schools as a reward for past services. Secondly, local authorities were reluctant to send qualified students because they feared they would not return to their villages.
At the same time of the introduction of the gaokao system, the GAC takes the decision to ensure each graduate an assignment. See also
The dissemination of knowledge is not only limited to universities and other programs but also through the publication and circulation of scientific books. In 1950, there are 10 categories: social science, philosophy, history, geography, language, art, literature, natural science, and applied science. The most numerous books are social science books on Maoism-Marxism-Leninism-Stalinism and on domestic mass movements (Resist America Aid Korea)
wrote in 1951 "Thirty Years of the Chinese Communist Party", which had a circulation of more than 7 million in 10 years. In 1952, several books are published on economic issues (e.g., Coal Mines of the Kailan Mining Administration, Treaty Ports, and Concessions) covering the period between 1900 and 1950.
Hu Qiaomu (1912-1992) sociologist, Marxist philosopher
Published in PRC 1949-1954
Translation: "The aim was to create regional balance by shifting institutions and to promote engineering and other technical disciplines by dismantling the renowned universities. The aim of the regional reorganization was to keep at least one, and at most two, universities in each of China's six major military administrative zones." Stiffler (2003). Page 221
28-07-1950 GAC provisional measures for the control of private institutions of higher learning
28-07-1950 GAC decision concerning the leadership over institutions of higher learning
16-12-1949 GAC decision to establish Renmin university
16-12-1949 MOE Implementation plan for Renmin university and
30-03-1950 Letter from Mao Zedong to Stalin with a request for professors for Beijing and Nanjing universities
Stiffler remarks "There existed a serious divide in the early years between younger cadres with relatively high levels of education (middle school or some college) and older cadres who sometimes possessed only elementary-school-level educations. This considerably complicated Renda’s mission of training Chinese Communist cadres in the new Soviet knowledge." Stiffler (2010). Page 307
"Zhang Wentian (ambassador in SU) created a special section of the Chinese embassy in Moscow dedicated to managing the educational exchange, in close cooperation with a three- person commission created in 1950 to oversee Chinese students abroad at the highest level: Nie Rongzhen (chief of staff of the People’s Liberation Army), Li Fuchun (northeast deputy to the Central Committee), and Lu Dingyi (Central Committee propaganda director)— all of whom had studied in the Soviet Union in the 1920s. They reported directly to Zhou Enlai, and Liu Shaoqi was deeply involved as well." McGuire (2018). Page 283
10-09-1951 Telegram from Stalin to Mao Zedong about the Chinese plan to plant of rubber trees in PCR
28-08-1952 Cable, Zhou Enlai to Chairman Mao [Zedong] and the Central Committee and
01-09-1952 Report, Zhou Enlai to Chairman Mao
Ginsburgs (1976) notices "...the Soviet govemment granted China a credit in the sum of 8.55 million rubles to finance expenses connected with the development of rubber plantations on Hainan island and the coastal zones of south-east China." Ginsburgs (1976).Page 10
Source: Yu (1955). Page 20
"Because when the People's Republic of China was first established, the political enthusiasm of progressive students in major cities was very high. Therefore, when the government explicitly ordered political courses in colleges and universities, the response was generally good. Most students are not disgusted because of the freshness. However, over time, things changed drastically. On the one hand, there was no unified political teaching material at that time. Most of the political teachers in schools did it reluctantly. They had very little understanding of the knowledge of the CCP and its theories. They could only read newspapers and interpret dogmatic slogans as teaching content. This method of teaching quickly begins to tire students." Yang (2013) No page number.
"A typical curriculum of the technical institute in China is as follows: 1. Political studies: 400 hours, about 10 per cent. of total. 2. Basic science: higher mathematics, physics and chemistry. 3. Basic technology: about 34 per cent. of total. 4. Specialised courses: 28 per cent. 5. Russian: three years. 6. Thesis planning: 10-12 weeks. 7. Experiment: 16-28 weeks. 8. Physical education: two hours weekly for first and second year undergraduates. 9. Vacations: six weeks in summer and two weeks in winter”. "In an attempt to accelerate graduation the Chinese compressed the five-year Soviet curriculum into a four-year programme, resulting in an extremely heavy load of 60-70 hours a week for the student, although the Ministry of Education prescribed only 36 classroom hours and 18 study hours weekly.91 In addition, the student has to participate in numerous political meetings and labour work during rest hours, weekends, and even vacations." Hsü (1964). Page 143 and Page 157
"Yanbian University, opened in 1949, was the first minority university in China with the Korean language as the main language of instruction. In the National University Entrance Exam, Joseonjok students also have the option of testing in Korean." Han (2010). Page 234
22-06-1950 GAC decree on the placement of graduates of public and private institutions of higher learning throughout the nation
Decision of the Ministry of Education on the implementation of curriculum reforms in institutions of higher education. Approved July 28, 1950; promulgated Aug. 2, 1950
Provisional rules for institutions of higher education. Approved July 28, 1950; promulgated Aug. 14, 1950.
Provisional rules for technical schools. Approved July 28, 1950; promulgated Aug. 14, 1950.
Provisional measures governing the control of private institutions of higher education. Approved July 28, 1950; promulgated Aug. 14, 1950.