The 2013 review of Open University of China (OUC) Outstanding Courses has been completed, with 40 courses from 19 provincial radio and TV universities (PRTVUs), two local open universities and two schools of the OUC selected (see appendix for complete list).

In order to further advance the construction of the OUC courses, improve the quality of course and teaching resources, and explore a mechanism of joint construction and sharing of teaching resources, the OUC initiated the selection of 2013 OUC Outstanding Courses in May. The Notice on Application for 2013 OUC Outstanding Courses (No. 1(2013) OUC resources) issued earlier pointed out, courses based on new media and new technologies (such as course resources that can be operated on tablet computers and mobile phones) were particularly encouraged to apply. 87 courses from 28 PRTVUs, two local open universities and two schools of the OUC applied. Of these, 29 come under the arts and law category, 25 come under the economics and management category, 19 come under the engineering category, five come under the education category, four come under the foreign languages categories and five come under the agroforestry and medicine category. 10 PRTVUs, including Hebei RTVU, and Shanghai Open University (Shanghai OU), submitted more than four courses. 

On July 26, the OUC and the Cooperation Association of Teaching Resources of China Radio and TV Universities (CRTVUs) held the 2013 OUC Outstanding courses review meeting in Beijing. University leaders including Yang Zhijian, Li Ling, Yan Bing, Li Linshu, Liu Chen, and Yang Xiaotang attended the meeting. The OUC President Yang Zhijian said that the selection of outstanding courses plays an important role in accelerating the construction of the OUC. The goal of this project is not only selection and review, but also to promote the construction and quality of online courses in the whole system. Yang hopes that the selection of courses based on the Internet will raise the level of the RTVU system as whole, and help the OUC to become a new type of university supported by information technology. Yang also used MOOCs as an example to emphasize that during the process of using technologies to promote teaching reform, the OUC should follow current trends and expend more effort in both theoretical research and practical application.

As the leader of the review group, vice president of the OUC Yan Bing pointed out that course development is a form of fundamental construction for teaching of the OUC. The construction of outstanding courses is an important measure in advancing overalle course construction. The first aim of course construction is to build a range of high quality courses that demonstrate the characteristics of the open universities and meet the study needs of their learners. The second aim is to increase the overall standard and capacity of course construction throughout the universities. The selected courses embody the following principles: pointed orientation, strong achievements, clear examples, and in-depth exploration. Yan Bing emphasized that it is not enough to evaluate courses based on their technical aspects. In addition, the evaluation of outstanding courses is not just about resources, but also about teaching content, teaching models, and the realization of instructional design. The OUC should pay attention to the whole teaching process, rather than just a static demonstration of the resources. The most important measure is the actual results of using information technology and the real applicability of the courses, such as the combination of online courses and mobile learning. At the summary of the meeting, Yang pointed out that the achievements of the construction of outstanding courses are clear to see. However, the OUC should carry out further research on the issues remaining, and begin to reform the content and curriculum system based on the needs of the OUC course construction.

During the evaluation meeting, 40 courses were selected as 2013 OUC Outstanding courses, based on the preliminary evaluations of 29 experts and the results of a number of group discussions. The 40 courses will be demonstrated to the public for a week. 

2013 OUC Outstanding Courses
Name of the Course
Application Unit
The history of the Chinese political system
Hebei RTVU
Lectures on computer law and intellectual property law
Hebei RTVU
Management methods and art
Hebei RTVU
The culture of mathematics
Hebei RTVU
Korean listening and speaking
Jilin RTVU
English phonetics
Heilongjiang RTVU
Literature appreciation
Harbin RTVU
Computer-aided design
Shanghai OU
Personal finance
Shanghai OU
Social etiquette
Jiangsu OU
Economics and life
Jiangsu OU
Installation engineering assessment
Jiangsu OU
Practical legal basics
Zhejiang RTVU
The aesthetics of advertising
Fujian RTVU
The basics of computer culture
Jiangxi RTVU
Digital image processing
Shandong RTVU
The history of mathematics
Shandong RTVU
Internet systems and practices
Shandong RTVU
Qingdao RTVU
Practicals of mechanical manufacturing and automation
Henan RTVU
The fundamentals of nursing
Henan RTVU
Fruit tree pest control
Henan RTVU
Professional career planning
Hubei RTVU
Early childhood education  policies and regulations
Hunan RTVU
Taxation basics and practices
Hunan RTVU
Hunanese culture (regional culture)
Hunan RTVU
Management methods and art
Hunan RTVU
Introduction to linear management planning
Shenzhen RTVU
Basic accounting practices
Guangxi RTVU
The use and maintenance of everyday office equipment
Sichuan RTVU
Mechanical manufacturing engineering
Chongqing RTVU
Introduction to franchising
Xi’an RTVU
Rhetoric and the verbal arts
Qinghai RTVU
Management information systems
Xinjiang RTVU
Advanced Chinese (1)
Xinjiang RTVU
Forest cultivation
OUC School of Agroforestry and Medicine
Human physiology
OUC School of Agroforestry and Medicine
Human resource management in public departments
OUC School of Arts and Law
The modern Chinese political system
OUC School of Arts and Law
Online advertising practices
OUC School of Arts and Law

By Zhou Xiang, Gao Minghui, the OUC