ABOUT

About SFL

The School of Foreign Languages
A Survey of the School

The teaching of foreign languages in Southeast University (SEU) boasts a long history. As early as 1902, Sanjiang Normal College (predecessor of Southeast University) even in its preparatory stages as an institution of higher learning began to offer the Japanese language course. The College officially opened in 1903, offering up to 17 kinds of courses, two of which were English and Japanese. Then the following years saw the founding of the English Specialized Section (1917), the Foreign Language Teaching and Research Section (1983) and the Foreign Language Department (1987) (predecessor of the Foreign Language School). In 2006, the Foreign Language Department was renamed the School of Foreign Languages. In history, many scholars and personages taught in the School. Among those who worked as professors in charge of the School were Wu Mi (Harvard educated), Mei Guangdi (Harvard educated), Lou Guanglai (Harvard educated), and Zhang Shiyi (Columbia educated), among others.

The School is comprised of four departments and four learning centers—the Department of English, Department of Japanese, Department of College Foreign Languages, Department of Public English Teaching for Graduates, MTI Program, Testing Center, Extracurricular Activity Tutoring Center & Foreign Language Learning Center. The School also boasts 1 National Model Site of College Foreign Language Teaching Reform, 1 provincial-level research institute, namely, the Research Center for Asian Pacific Language Policies, 6 university-level research institutes—the Institute of Linguistics & Applied Linguistics, Institute of Foreign & Comparative Literature Studies, Institute of Translation Studies, Institute of Modern Education Technology Studies, Institute of American Culture & Higher Education, and Institute of Japanese Language & Culture, 2 university-level research center, namely, the Research & Developing Center of Foreign Language Textbooks, and the Research Center for Russia, as well as 1 Committee of Professors. All the above serve as a supportive platform for the interaction & integration of teaching & research, talent nurturing and staff training.

The School, in its endeavor for outstanding accomplishments in academic development, now offers two undergraduate programs, namely, English and Japanese, with the former awarded Jiangsu Provincial Key Major, as well as five Master’s degree programs, i.e. Linguistics and Applied Linguistics, English Linguistics and Literature, Japanese Linguistics and Literature, Translation and Interpreting, as well as Russian Linguistics and Literature. The year 2013 saw the approval of the joint fostering program for double-degree masters of Linguistics and Applied Linguistics between SEU and Monash University, the first of its kind approved by the Ministry of Education of China. The total student enrollment now reaches nearly 600, including 358 undergraduates and 181 postgraduates.

Now the School boasts a faculty of 114 full-time teachers, including 12 full professors, 48 associate professors, 2 doctoral supervisors, 34 master’s supervisors, 1 winner of the National Award for Great Teachers, 1 winner of the Provincial Award for Great Teachers, 2 teachers selected into the Top-Level Talents Program 333 of Jiangsu Province, and 3 selected into the Outstanding Young Teachers Program of Jiangsu Province. Furthermore, the School engages nearly 20 preeminent experts and scholars both at home and abroad as part-time or visiting professors. Almost all faculty members have either studied or taken refresher courses overseas.   

The School, adhering to the three basic functions of a university, i.e., “nurturing talents, pursuing scientific research, and serving society”, has been increasingly influential in the foreign language area with its achievements over years. The School, committed to the nurturing of high-quality and inter-disciplinary talents with a Chinese mind and global vision, has brought up quite a few internationally prestigious scholars, experts and senior professionals in the past hundred years. In recent years, in response to national strategies, it is further devoted to the nurturing of talents in line with national and local demands and the gap of professionals in domestic and foreign markets, which has won acclaim of both peers and the industry with competitive advantages through cooperation with relevant enterprises and industries. In addition, the School, offering English, Japanese, German, French, Russian and Latin courses to non-language majors of SEU as their first or second foreign language, has been among the best and set an example nationwide in terms of its innovation-oriented teaching mode and achievements in talent nurturing, and has thus won quite a few national and provincial-level teaching achievement awards. Likewise, scientific research of the School has also been fruitful. Four research orientations are identified with strong disciplines of SEU, namely, foreign language education and learning science, foreign literature and arts, Asian Pacific language policies and language planning, and translation studies. The recent years has witnessed a significant growth in its research funds, successive success in the application for major projects, and a yearly increasing number of high-quality papers, which contributes potentially to social economy.

At present, professors of the School hold important social positions such as chairman of Jiangsu College Foreign Languages Teaching & Research Association; the School also serves as one of the national foreign language test centers for CET-4 and CET-6 oral examinations, Japanese Language Proficiency Test, IELTS and TOEFL, among others. 

Looking into the future, we will uphold our tradition of excellence and in the meantime accelerate our reform. We will work closely together for a sound and sustainable development in our contribution to the goal of building Southeast University into a world-class university.