The Open University of China (OUC) recently held a conference on its 2020 teaching and research. It took place online as well as in-person due to the impacts of Covid-19.

Li Yanzhong, director of the OUC Reform and Development Department, presided over the meeting, during which Ju Chuanjin, OUC vice president, delivered a report titled "Innovation in the Development of Scientific Research". He pointed out that 2020 marked a milestone for scientific research at the OUC, which introduced regulations related to management of research projects, management of their funding, selection of the top OUC research achievements (trial version), and rules for the use of funding, to optimise research policies and environment. OUC faculty and staff, despite the impact of Covid-19, devoted themselves to academic research, and completed applications for 133 projects outside the university, 35 of which were approved, a great increase in both numbers. For the first time, the university established a teaching-reform project, which was well received within the system. Research activity within the university is becoming more and more dynamic, and showing increased investment, enthusiasm and achievements. At the first digital scientific-research forum, 25 young and middle-aged scholars from six departments of the OUC headquarters presented top-quality work at six meetings. As part of the 14th Five-year Plan, the university will continue to emphasise scientific research, as well as the development of an academic community, under the guidance of Xi Jinping's Thoughts on Socialism with Chinese Characteristics for a New Era. It will seek to enhance motivation, the numbers of projects, and research capabilities, develop scientific research to promote construction of disciplines, enhance teacher training, and support the development of open universities.

Three branches of the OUC, through the two-way video capabilities of the OUC cloud classroom, discussed the research that took place during the time of the 13th Five-Year Plan. Wang Bojun, vice president of Shanghai Open University, gave a report titled "Strengthening Characteristics, Building Brands, and Enhancing Scientific Research to Promote its Sustainable Development"; Li Zhengguang, vice president of Fujian Open University, gave a report titled "Focusing on Featured Research to Promote the Scientific-research Capabilities of the OUC System"; Wu Zhaohua, vice president of Sichuan Open University, gave a report titled "Innovations in and Improvement of Scientific Research to Promote the Construction of Open Universities"; and Li Song of the OUC Faculty of Education delivered a speech titled "Promoting the Construction of a High-quality Education System through Scientific Research, and Promoting Teacher Research through Platform Construction”.

Chen Shougang, director of the OUC Scientific Research Office, presided over the meeting on national project applications in 2021. Professor Zheng Yonghe, doctoral supervisor at Beijing Normal University, and former director of the Policy Bureau of National Natural-sciences Foundation of China (NSFC), gave a report titled "Thoughts on Strengthening Basic Research in Education". Meng Zhaohai, associate researcher with the National Institute of Education Sciences, and deputy director of the office of the National Leading Group for Educational-science Planning, gave a report titled "Reflections on the High-quality Development of Education Research in the New Era". Li Shuang, an associate professor at Beijing Normal University, and Wang Guopeng, a teacher in the OUC Academic Affairs Department, shared their successes with NSFC project applications in terms of determining direction, selecting topics, and writing materials. For the audience, the meeting was innovative in form and rich in content, promoting learning, as well as exchanges among OUC branches, and enhancing the confidence and enthusiasm of faculty and staff in relation to scientific research.


By Chen Min, OUC