Chemistry discipline in Shaanxi Normal University (SNNU) was founded in 1944. After generations of efforts, a discipline with dominant position and distinguished feature has been developed with potent influence in the society of scientific research and social areas, both at home and abroad.
1. Orientations and Objectives on the Construction and Development of Chemistry Discipline
The chemistry discipline in SNNU is the key construction discipline of the National 211 Project, the key construction discipline of Shaanxi Province, and the first-class construction discipline of SNNU. The chemistry discipline is driving our university into a research-based comprehensive university with teacher and education as the characteristic. It adheres to the guidance from the national strategy demands, persists in development tactics with specific and explicit directions, and develops into international high-level chemistry discipline with distinctive features.
2. Advantages and Characteristics of Chemistry Discipline
The chemistry discipline adheres to the traditional strengths of fundamental chemistry research, focuses on national strategy demands, strengthens on interdisciplinary communication, highlights on practical application. We have built a system focusing on surface & interface chemistry and applications, featuring on several interdisciplines including “new energy chemistry”, “analytical chemistry in life science”, “green synthesis and catalysis” and “cultural relics conservation chemistry”. It evolved into a training base for “chemistry-plus” innovative talents.
Discipline Platform: We have the first-level authorization unit of doctorate degree in chemistry with a post-doctoral mobile station, and the second-level authorization unit of doctorate degree in applied chemistry and material physics & chemistry. We have built an integral training system for talents of undergraduates, masters, doctors and post-doctors. Two national level experimental teaching demonstration centers and more than ten steady teaching practice bases off campus have been set up and developed to meet the demands for specialized talents cultivation. We have national level teaching team plus excellent course in physical chemistry, and national level bilingual teaching demonstration course in analytical chemistry. We also have six provincial level teaching teams covering all courses in chemistry discipline as well as chemistry education course. We have built the Base of Introducing Talents of Discipline to Universities on Applied Surface and Colloid Chemistry from the Ministry of Education and State Administration of Foreign Experts Affairs. We have two bases from the Ministry of Education, including the Key Laboratory of Applied Surface and Colloid Chemistry and the Engineering Research Center of Protecting Historical and Cultural Heritage. Three laboratories of Shaanxi Province are based in the chemistry discipline of our university, including the Key Laboratory of Analytical Chemistry for Life Science, the Key Laboratory of Macromolecular Science and the Engineering Laboratory of Energy Related New Technologies.
Faculty Team: We have developed a team of more than 80 high-level fundamental research faculties, the backbones of which include “Yangtze River Scholars”, “Distinguished Young Scholars”, “Outstanding Young Scholars”, “Young Scholars of Thousand Talents Program”, “Scholars of Hundred Talents Program in Shaanxi” and “New Century Outstanding Talents”. Fundamental research areas with stable orientations have been established for decades, covering the analytical chemistry in life science, green catalysis and synthesis, colloid and surface & interface chemistry, solution and thermal chemistry. On the other direction, we have also developed a team of more than 30 high-level applied fundamental research faculties, the backbones of which include “Scholars of Thousand Talents Program”, “Scholars of Hundred, Thousand and Ten Thousand Talent Project”, “Scholars of Hundred Talents Program in Shaanxi” and “New Century Outstanding Talents”. Applied chemistry research areas with stable orientations and distinctive features have been established and developed for more than ten years, including conservation of cultural relics, fossil fuels catalysis and conversion, new energy materials, explosive chemical detection and energy-related materials that are closely related to the national defense security. We possess two innovative research teams of Ministry of Education, including the team of surface & interface chemistry with applications and the team of molecular diagnosis. We also possess another three innovative research teams of Shaanxi Province, including the team of novel carbon-based materials, the team of key fundamental research on highly selective and efficient carbon conversion in syngas, and the team of analytical chemistry in life science.
Hardware Resources: We established a hardware platform to effectively support fundamental chemistry research and characteristic applied chemistry research. Advanced large instruments, with the value of around 150 million RMB, guarantee the analysis of composition/structure at molecular/micro/meso levels and the tests of photonic/electric/magnetic/thermal properties. We independently developed the domestic advanced network administration system for large instruments. We also have tens of data bases with more than 600 specialized journals to absolutely fulfill the requirements on research and teaching.
3. Objectives in Talent Cultivation
In accordance to the cultivation policies of the university targeting on fundamental, diverse, high-quality, competent, and creative talents, we take the advantages of the chemistry discipline, strengthen the fundamentals in chemistry theories and skills for students, elevate the development potential of majors in chemistry, and train distinguished teachers and high-level researchers with faithful ideality, broad visual field, innovative personality and all-round developed morality, intelligence, physique and aesthetic.
Based on the objectives in talent training, we cultivated a class of outstanding fundamental education professionals, high-level researchers and industrialists. Among the graduated students, one is selected as the academician of the Chinese Academy of Sciences, two are selected into the National Ten-Thousand Talents Plan, three are selected into the National Thousand Talents Program, one is selected as Distinguished Professor of Yangtze River Scholars, two are selected into the National Thousand Talents Program (Youth), five are awarded as Distinguished Young Scholars by National Natural Science Foundation of China, two are awarded as Outstanding Young Scholars by National Natural Science Foundation of China, and one is rewarded with National Top 100 Excellent PhD Thesis Award. Meanwhile, we trained large numbers of outstanding teachers and fundamental educationists for the national basic education field.
4. Orientations in Chemistry Discipline
We aim at continuously exploring the advantages of all-round developed first-level chemistry discipline in fundamental research, strengthening construction strategy on chemistry application discipline supported by the chemistry discipline. We are also concentrating on the development of material chemistry featuring on “new energy chemistry”, “analytical chemistry in life science” with cross connection to life science, and applied chemistry featuring on “catalytic conversion of fossil fuels” as well as “cultural relics conservation chemistry”. A pattern of discipline construction and development has been shaped based on mutual effects between fundamental research and chemistry application, the former boosts the latter and the latter conversely tows the former.
With 30 years of efforts, we have developed into a first-level chemistry discipline authorization unit of doctorate degree and a post-doctoral mobile station from a master degree authorization unit. We accomplished the discipline construction covering six second-level disciplines (inorganic chemistry, organic chemistry, analytical chemistry, physical chemistry, polymer chemistry and physics, food chemistry) and one first-level discipline (chemistry). Supported by chemistry discipline, discipline construction objectives have been realized on material chemistry, chemical biology and applied chemistry with interdisciplinary characteristic. Under the guidance of key issues related to national strategy and national economy, five research areas and teams (surface & interface chemistry, new energy chemistry, analytical chemistry in life science, green synthesis and catalysis, cultural relics conservation chemistry) have been shaped focusing on chemistry discipline and its cross connections.
5. Domestic and International Influence
In 2012, the chemistry discipline in our university was ranked the 23rd place during the third round of national university discipline evaluation. In the same year, chemistry discipline entered top 1% of ESI ranking among universities and research institutions worldwide. Within the top 1% universities and institutions, our ranking increased from 97.31% in 2012 to 56.54% in 2016. Engineering and material disciplines in our university that are closely related to chemistry discipline also entered top 1% of ESI ranking among universities and research institutions worldwide.
In our discipline, academic leaders such as Prof. Yu Fang, Prof. Jianliang Xiao, and Prof. Shengzhong Liu with high international impacts have emerged and been known in the scientific society. Research results have been published in prestigious journals such as JACS, Angewandte Chemie, Advanced Materials and Chemical Science. The capability to undertake the Major Programs, Key Programs, Major Research Plan, Key Instrument Project of National Natural Science Foundation and the Weapons and Equipment Exploration Programs has been increased significantly in recent years. The trust degree from enterprises has been increasingly strengthened, and funds for crossing research projects from enterprises reach 80 million RMB in the past four years. Distinguished alumni have been known worldwide in academic field, such as Prof. Can Li (Academician of Chinese Academy of Sciences) and Prof. Xinrong Zhang (Associate Editor of Analytical Chemistry). Research areas including the colloid and interface chemistry, luminescence analysis and cultural relics conservation have significant impacts worldwide.
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