On 6th March 2016, the Open University of China (short for OUC) and Guangzhou Distance Education Centre held a signing ceremony in Beijing, signifying the formal launch of a national all-network industry and enterprise teaching pilot centre, with Guangzhou Distance Education Centre responsible for the construction and operation of all-network teaching platform for the “McDonald’s Dream of Pursuing Further Education” programme.

OUC vice president Liu Chen and president of Guangzhou Distance Education Centre Xie Song signed the agreement on behalf of the two parties. The ceremony was also attended by relevant personnel from the OUC and McDonald’s (China), including McDonald’s vice president Zhang Junwei, executive human resources manager Huang Xiaoqiang, and project manager Peng Jialin.

Liu Chen stressed that the project is of essential significance to the reform of the OUC’s school operational and has been identified as a key project for 2017, as well as an explorative“all-network teaching” model as part of “Six-Network Integration” learner development model reform.

Liu Chen also pointed out that the OUC Experimental School will lead the implementation of the project, giving full play to its advantages in order to help the relevant units effectively manage the “McDonald’s Pursuing Further Education” programme and serve 120,000 McDonald’s employees nationwide.

According to the agreement, both parties will make the “McDonald’s Pursuing Further Education” programme a pilot project for the establishment of an all-network teaching platform and use its operational support system to fully implement a “Six-Network Integration” learner development model and explore reform based on an Internet operational mechanism. It will also promote pilot credit bank construction and explore a “dual system” university and the construction of a new type OUC cloud university.

The OUC and McDonald’s(China) signed an agreement on the "Dream of Pursuing Further Education" in July 2016, in which it was specified that the project will be deployed based on the principles of unified enrolment, course resources, teaching management, online platforms, and an evaluation system. The agreement signed with Guangzhou Distance Education Centre symbolises the formal implementation of the “McDonald’s Pursuing Further Education” programme. Pilot enrolment has been conducted in 27 cities nationwide and by the end of 2016, a total of 954 employees had been enrolled at seven all-network degree education programmes at the OUC Experimental School.

The McDonald’s "Dream of Pursuing University Education" programme represents the OUC’s positive response to the “Dream of Pursuing Further Education” plan launched by the Ministry of Education and the All-China Labour Federation. The two sides will explore a model for continuing education for employees and a new model for learner development in large-scale enterprises against the backroom of “Internet Plus”. It will emphasise “the integration of industry and teaching and cooperation between schools and enterprises” so as to establish a strong example for continuing education in industry and enterprises across China.

By Li Chao, OUC