USTC was founded with the mission of addressing urgent needs to improve China's economy, defense infrastructure, and science and technology education. Its core strength is scientific and technological research, and more recently has expanded into humanities and management with a strong scientific and engineering emphasis. USTC has 12 schools, 30 departments, the Special Class for the Gifted Young, the Experimental Class for Teaching Reform, Graduate Schools (Hefei, Shanghai, Suzhou), a Software School, a School of Network Education, and a School of Continuing Education. In 2012 the Institute of Advanced Technology, University of Science and Technology of China was founded.
USTC was founded in Beijing by the Chinese Academy of Sciences (CAS) in September 1958. The Director of CAS, Mr. Guo Moruo was appointed the first president of USTC. USTC's founding mission was to develop a high-level science and technology workforce, as deemed critical for development of China's economy, defense, and science and technology education. The establishment was hailed as "A Major Event in the History of Chinese Education and Science." CAS has supported USTC by combining most of its institutes with the departments of the university. USTC is listed in the top 16 national key universities, becoming the youngest national key university.
In 1995, USTC was amongst the first batch of universities obtaining support through the National 9th Five-Year Plan and the "Project 211". In 1999, USTC was singled out as one of the 9 universities enjoying priority support from the nation's "Plan of Vitalizing Education Action Geared to the 21st Century". Since September 2002, USTC has been implementing its "Project 211" construction during the 10th National Development Plan.
USTC consistently adheres to the school-running principle of pursuing the national interest and innovative pioneering. It upholds the combination of science with technology, teaching with research, and theory with practice. In a short period, USTC has turned into a comprehensive national key university with a focus on science and technology. USTC also offers management studies involved with science and technology and the humanities.
With the motto, "Studying diligently, making progress both in study and development of moral character" (?,?), USTC has made distinguished achievements in talent fostering, scientific research and technology transfer, turning into an important base of high-qualified talent training and high-level scientific research for the nation. USTC is regarded by the Ministry of Science and Technology as one of the 4 universities with best scientific research performance in China. It ranks among the best in the review of Chinese top universities by the US journal "Science" and the French journal "Research".
There are 13 schools, 27 departments, the Special Class for the Gifted Young, the Experimental Class for the Teaching Reform, the Graduate School, School of Management (Beijing), the Software School, School of Network Education, School of Continuing Education and Institute of Advanced Technology. USTC offers 43 undergraduate specialties, 17 first-category Ph.D. degree programs, 89 second-category Ph.D. degree programs, 105 second-category master's degree specialties. It becomes the key base for the education of the Ph.D. students within the CAS.
USTC has three national research institutions and 6 key laboratories of the Chinese Academy of Sciences (CAS). It also has some key scientific research institutions such as the CAS Research Center for Thermal Safety Engineering and Technology.
16 academic societies are affiliated with the University, including the Synchrotron Radiation Committee under the China Society of Physics, the System Simulation Committee under the China Society of Automation, and the Quantum Optics Committee under the China Society of Physics. The University publishes some important academic journals, such as "Journal of the University of Science and Technology", "Fire Science", "Journal of Low Temperature Physics", "Journal of Chemical Physics", "Experimental Mechanics", and "Education and Modernization".
There are more than 3600 faculty and staff numbers, 46 CAS and CAE academicians, 528 professors. The number of students accepting normal higher education at USTC totals around 13794, 8243 undergraduate students, 3873 master's degree students, and 1498 Ph.D. students among them. Besides, it also has 1575 professional master's degree students, 110 post-doctoral fellows and 134 guest professors.
USTC has been likened to the Caltech of China "due to its dominant leadership position in scientific research, elite undergraduate education, and rigorous academic programs" .
There are five campuses: East, South, West, North and Center Campus.
The campuses cover an area of 1.46 million square metres (360 acres), with 890,000 square metres (9,600,000 sq ft) of building area. The library has a collection of 1.73 million books, 3000 kinds of journal in the language of Chinese, 4000 kinds of English, 600,000 electronic books and 20,000 electronic journals in Chinese or in English.
Teaching Building II and the old library, East Campus, USTC
A first-class campus computer network is running within the campus. Five public experimental centers for teaching and research are under construction, namely the Center of Physical Science, Life Science, Information Science, Engineering and Material Science, and Application of Synchrotron Radiation.
Main library building located in the West Campus
The school hospital, is a specific attachment to the university, and holds the aim of providing such services as disease prevention, health care, treatment and health education for the teaching staff and the students. After over forty years of development and construction, the hospital has been steadily expanded, the level of treatment has continuously improved, and the equipment has constantly been upgraded. The hospital covers 5,200 m2, with 110 beds and more than 110 employees.
The hospital is committed to the treatment and health care services for over 10,000 students, about 3,000 teachers and more than 700 retired employees, plus the families of the employees who live on the campus, which adds up to more than 20,000 people. A branch hospital and an outpatient department have been established separately on the west and the south campuses that are also centers for students' living and studying activities. The medical personnel are on duty around the clock for the convenience of the people.
In addition to carrying out daily diagnosis and treatment, the school hospital also, according to the college hygiene regulations, undertakes physical examination services under the principle of prevention. It is already a convention for students to take physical examinations both after their entrance and before graduation, and another check during their college years. Physical examinations are given every two years for school personnel and those who have retired.
To fulfill the demands of the science-major students for medical knowledge, the corresponding doctors of the school hospital have compiled a book titled Health Education for College Students, which, as the textbook for the selective course of health education, illuminates medical knowledge systematically from various angles. In recent years, this course has been taken by increasing numbers of students, and the title "advanced collective" has been bestowed on the hospital by the education authorities.
Since its participation in the CAS Experimental Program of Knowledge Innovation, USTC has achieved a batch of important and innovative results in the basic research of nano science and technology, quantum information science, life science research, fire science and fire protection technology, polar scientific investigation and research, bio-mass clean energy research.
USTC actively encourages and push forward transfer of the research results and the industrialization of high and new technology. The University-Region (Enterprise) Cooperation Committee was established for the strengthening of the cooperation with the local governments and enterprises. It has established and developed the relationship of cooperation with some famous large and medium-sized enterprises such as the Daqing Petroleum Administration, Sinopec, the Bao Steel Group, Lenovo Group, and Haier Group. In total, 16 local governments and enterprises have become members of the USTC-Region (Enterprise) Cooperation Committee. Some research results incubation bases have been established, such as the Hefei National University Garden of Science and Technology, the Luohe Hi-tech Garden, the Guiyang Industrial Garden of Science and Technology, the Shanghai Research and Development Center, and the Shenzhen Futian Base of Industry, Teaching and Research. The Anhui Provincial Government and USTC have jointly presented the "Province-University Cooperation Program", fostering the industrialization of technological results. USTC also actively files applications for the "Seed Funds" established by prefectures and cities in China, sparing no efforts in making contribution to the regional economic construction and social development.
USTC has concluded agreements of cooperation and exchange with around 100 universities and research institutions in more than 30 nations and regions. Around 300 international experts and scholars will visit USTC every year for lecturing and collaborative research. USTC has sent around 10,000 individual visits to more than 30 nations and regions for study and cooperative research.
There are 16 affiliated academic societies, including the Synchrotron Radiation Committee under the China Society of Physics, the System Simulation Committee under the China Society of Automation, and the Quantum Optics Committee under the China Society of Physics.
USTC has taken a leading position among Chinese universities on the number of research papers published internationally and in the citation rate of the papers. Since 1996, USTC consistently ranks No. 4 on the number of papers included by SCI; Since 1999, it ranks No. 1 on the number of papers published in the journals with high-impact factor among universities across China. Between 1991 and 2000, USTC ranks No. 1 among Chinese universities on the number of papers published in the internationally distinguished journals of "Science", "Nature", "PRL", and "JACS". USTC ranks No. 2 among the universities and research institutions in the world on the number of nano-research papers published from 1996 to 2000. The 2019 The Times Higher Education Rankings ranked USTC 93rd overall in the world and 3rd in China. The 2018 QS World University Rankings ranked USTC 97th overall in the world. The 2018 US News Best Global Universities ranked USTC 138th overall in the world and 3rd in China. The 2019 Times Higher Education World University Rankings ranked USTC 93th overall in the world.
Only the National Laboratories, State Key Laboratories, and Key Laboratories of the Chinese Academy of Sciences are listed below, among which the National Laboratories have the highest qualification. USTC is the only university in mainland China which possess two National Laboratories at the same time.
Shimin Fang - better known by his pen name Fang Zhouzi. A Chinese popular science writer, primarily known for his campaigns against pseudoscience and fraud in China. Ph.D of Michigan State University
Notable faculty members
Zhou Guangzhao (1929-) - Famous theoretical physicist, Vice-chairman of the Standing Committee of the National People's Congress of China, Honorary President of USTC at present.
Yan Jici (1901-1996) - Pioneer of Modern physics research and education in China, former Vice-president, President and Honorary President of USTC.
Qian Linzhao (1906-1999) - Famous physicist and educator, pioneer of scientific history and education in China, former Vice-president of USTC.
Fang Lizhi (1936-2012) - Former professor of astrophysics and vice president of the USTC
Hua Luogeng (1910-1985) - Pioneer of modern mathematics research and education in China, former Chairman of the Department of Mathematics and Vice-president of USTC.
Guo Moruo (1892-1978) - A Chinese author, poet, historian, archaeologist, the first president of USTC.
Meng Xuenong (1948-) - Former Mayor of Beijing, and former Governor of Shanxi Province
Qian Xuesen (1911-2009) - Father of missiles of China, former Chairman of the Department of Mechanics with USTC.
Zhao Zhongyao (1902-1998) - Pioneer of modern particle physics research and education in China, one of the first in the world to find positrons, former Chairman of the Department of Modern Physics with USTC.