Every Tuesday, 72-year-old Grandpa Chen comes to the Calligraphy Experience Centre at Tianjin Radio and TV University (Tianjin RTVU) for his calligraphy lesson.

Every day, after Grandma Li takes her grandson to school at the Haihe Education Residence, she goes to the Community Learning Experience Centre to participate in educational activities.

Every weekend, over 300 children get up early to come to the Community Education Art Experience Centre at Hedong to receive “Community Child Stars” art instruction and performance training. They compete at the level of full-time actors and actresses.
They are enabled to learn based on their interests and needs as a result of the support of community education provided by Tianjin RTVU.

In recent years, Tianjin RTVU has grown in the areas of degree education, vocational training and community education in accordance with the needs of its region, promoting lifelong learning in the city through reforms and technological upgrades.

Open education in the new era

Tianjin RTVU was founded in 1958 as China’s first distance-education university, using radio broadcasting as the main teaching approach. It has promoted the integration of information technology and education ever since, constantly making use of new technologies, from TV to the internet and beyond.

In recent years, the university has upgraded the quality of its degree education, training programmes and community education in order to accelerate the process of becoming an open university and enhance its cooperation with organisations outside the campus, among other goals.

“Internet +” community education and learning for all

Community education is essential to lifelong learning, and Tianjin RTVU has contributed to its development by distributing learning cards to the city's residents. High-quality e-learning resources and an “Intelligent Learning Experience Centre” have been built to enable residents, through mobile learning and live broadcasts, to study anywhere and at any time.

The Tianjin lifelong-learning network is an intelligent-learning platform built by Tianjin RTVU to enable urban and rural residents of the region to study anywhere and at any time. It keeps work from interfering with learning, enabling on-demand study integrated with offline activities and other functions by logging onto a computer or mobile phone through the lifelong-learning card. More and more citizens of all ages are therefore taking part in learning activities.

A new type of university

Over the last 60 years, Tianjin RTVU has received recognitions of national excellent university for adult continuing education” the research and the demonstration application construction centre of public service platform mode of lifelong learning of the Ministry of Education (MOE), Tianjin sub-centre of the National E-Learning Resource Centre and the Experimental Unit of Community Education I of the MOE. It has sponsored national exhibitions of calligraphy and seal cutting, children’s performances, the Tianjin community-education forum in Beijing, Tianjin and Hebei, and other events, and has become a nationally recognised centre of community education.

Through the Tianjin lifelong-learning network and the pilot Community Education Experience Centre, Tianjin RTVU developed the courses Health Care for the Elderly, Lifelong Learning for Females, Education for the Young and others. By focusing on specific demographics it has been able to meet their unique learning needs.

Tianjing RTVU has managed to connect open education with modern vocational education and undertake innovations in vocational training and open lifelong learning, training methods, and the development of distance education. It has become a leader in Tianjin community education.

By Tianjin Daily