On December 31, 2015, the Open University of China (OUC) held a seminar on non-degree education at industry and corporate colleges. At the seminar, they held discussions on non-degree education work for industry schools and further clarified development ideas to explore a new model of cooperation and development. 

About 30 people, including Vice Presidents of the OUC Li Linshu and Liu Chen, heads of 9 industry and corporate colleges (School of Social Work, School of Foundry Engineering, School of Information Security, School of Circular Economy, Logistics School, Software School, Textile School, School of Automotive Engineering, and School of Mechanical Industry), as well as heads of related departments of the OUC attended the seminar. Liu Chen presided over the seminar. 

Li Linshu pointed out that industry and corporate colleges of the OUC were set up based on mutual resource integration and complementary advantages. The advantage of the industry association lies in the non-degree form; therefore the top-level design of the industry and corporate colleges and their business orientation should not just focus on degree education, they should transform their ideas, first starting from the non-degree education, then, by using the credit bank system, coordinated development with degree education can also be implemented.

The participants discussed the reform development of non-degree education and industry and corporate colleges. They agreed that there has been a dramatic change in non-degree education work, and obvious progress has been made in the top-level design, organization structure, platform building, and business model innovation. This has provided a good opportunity and platform for the development of non-degree education in industry and corporate schools. According to the participants, the industry and corporate colleges should actively leverage their own advantages, closely coordinate with the OUC in industry policy, industry and professional standards formulation, training programme planning, and non-degree education integration design to jointly promote career development. They proposed that the OUC should be concerned about and support the development of the industry and corporate colleges, integrating the development of the industry and corporate colleges into the OUC's overall planning development, thus helping them with difficulties and problems in their development process. The non-degree education work should focus on designing a good cooperation plan and incentive mechanism, arousing the enthusiasm and initiatives of industry and corporate colleges. It is hoped that the OUC could improve the issue handling process and strengthen communication with the industry and corporate colleges to better allow the colleges to integrate school development in a fast manner and impel the non-degree education work to enter a new stage. 

Director of the OUC’s Department of Business Development and Educational Cooperation Li Yanzhong delivered a report entitled Marching into a New Stage of the Construction of Industry and Corporate Colleges--Review, Analysis, and Outlook, in which he analyzed progress and problems in the construction of industry and corporate colleges, and laid out plans for their next steps. Director of the Department of External Education and Professional Training Ma Ruolong delivered a report entitled Open and Sharing, Promoting Non-Degree Education of Industry and Corporate Colleges, in which he focused on the working progress, new business models, and the cooperation theory of non-degree education. Deputy Director of the Credit Bank Management Office (Learning Achievements Accreditation Centre) Yan Xiaoping delivered a report entitled Application of the Credit Bank in Industry, in which he introduced the progress and planning of the construction of the credit bank, and a number of advantages that the credit bank brings in its application to industry and corporate colleges. 

Liu Chen summarized that in the process of strategic transformation from radio and TV universities to the open universities, the non-degree education of industry and corporate colleges faces great opportunities: first, after a year of hard work, non-degree education has laid a solid foundation for working basis and platform support, and is exploring a new business model in non-degree education development; second, after two years of accumulation, the industry and corporate colleges have become familiar with the OUC, and accumulated experience in disciplines, courses, and resources; third, after nearly three years of study, the credit bank has achieved fruitful results, and the pilot work has laid a solid foundation for non-degree and degree education; fourth, the OUC paid great attention to teaching reform and has made new plans for it. He hoped that the industry and corporate colleges leveraged their own advantages and actively created conditions to start full cooperation with the OUC in non-degree education. 

By Sun Jingliang, OUC