The discipline division of higher education and specialty setting based on the discipline are the foundation of study and the model of teaching for modern universities. The undergraduates’ and graduates’ specialty setting belong to two different specialty catalogues in China.
The setting and adjustment of Bachelor’s Degree specialty in China demonstrate the following features:
1. With regard to the specialty adjustment decision, the educational authorities of the state manage the revision and adjustment of specialty catalogue for bachelor degree.
2. With regard to the guiding ideology of specialty adjustment, emphasize the social adjustment of college students on the basis of the disciplines. widen specialty caliber gradually expands, it changes the specialty setting method of specific product, specific industry and specific technology oriented.
3. The categories of specialty decrease gradually.
4. The market oriented function of specialty setting is strengthening, and the decision-making power of the universities is increasing now. The change of employment status of college graduates has a bigger and bigger impact on the specialty setting. For example, with the globalization of economy and China’s entry to WTO, Foreign Language and International Trade become hot specialties successively. With the development of modern information technology and the increased demands of society, Computer Science, Software, Communications and E-Commerce are pursued and admired in the market. Since 1980’s, China resumed postgraduate admission, from that time, the three-level specialty setting of discipline, first- level discipline and second-level discipline were identified. In June, 1997, Academic Degrees Committee of the State Council and State Education Commission jointly issued the Lists of Disciplines and Specialties of Master and Doctor Degree- awarding as well as Postgraduate Education. The discipline of Management was added to the new list, totally there were 12 disciplines, 88 first-level disciplines and 382 second-level disciplines.
In the degree-awarding of 11 disciplines, Engineering was the highest, among which bachelor degree accounted for 44.95%, master degree accounted for 37.70% and doctor degree accounted for 39.92%. The second was Science, among which bachelor degree accounted for 9.94%, master degree accounted for 10.12% and doctor degree accounted for 20.02%.