Introduction

Beijing Foreign Studies University (BFSU), whose history can be traced back to 1941, is a key university affiliated to the Ministry of Education (MOE). BFSU offers the largest number of language learning programs and other interdisciplinary studies in China. BFSU has been China's s principal base offering excellent training in foreign relations, foreign trade, foreign culture and foreign language learning and teaching.

The university is one of the first nationally accredited institutions offering Masters and Doctoral degree programs. In her history of over sixty years, the university has turned out tens of thousands of graduates with high levels of proficiency in foreign languages, foreign relations or related areas. The university has won the name of cradle for diplomats in China thanks to her outstanding graduates serving wherever a five-starred red flag is flying.

In July 2000, BFSU was authorized as an experimental university of modern distance education by the MOE. In December 2000, the Institute of Online Education, BFSU, was formally established and professor Chen Nai-fang, President of the university, was appointed Dean of the Institute.

Thanks to the amazing fusion of the universitys strong educational resources and contemporary network technology, the Institute of Online Education has established a set of modernized, open and multi-layer teaching and administration patterns. Adhering to their fundamental beliefs, the professors managing the Institute, have developed a wide variety of teaching resources at the university, and integrated professional research with foreign language education for all to meet the growing needs of social education and achieve the final goal of high quality lifelong education.

The Institute has established a close partnership with Beijing Pacific Century Info-Tech Co., Ltd. (BPC),an advanced national corporation devoted to the development of our online education platform. BPC ensures the Institute's prosperity with her general technical and financial support.

Traditional ideas for time, space, resource accumulation and capture have been experiencing amazing changes with the fast growth of contemporary network technology. After China's entry into the WTO, the growing need for multi-disciplinary English majors will provide unprecedented opportunities and challenges to English teaching and online education. Facing the century's greatest opportunities, the Institute is committed to be China's largest online foreign language university offering the best possible education by virtue of our continuous and vigorous endeavors.

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