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Life Science and Environmental Sciences College

Introduction to the College of Life Science and Environmental Sciences


The College of Life Science and Environmental Sciences of CUN is formerly known as the Department of Biology and Chemistry established in 1986, which enrolled tertiary students of biology and chemistry. It began to enroll undergraduate college students in 1994, and MS candidates of Ecology in 2001. After years of constant development and growth, in 2002 it was renamed as the College of Life Science and Environmental Sciences.

College Orientation and Guiding Ideology

CLSES of CUN is a comprehensive college composed of several disciplines like Biological Science, Environmental Sciences, Chemistry and Medicine. According to the disciplinary characteristics and the actual situation of the College, CLSES established a developmental principle to develop ecology on the basis of biological sciences, and to develop environment sciences on the basis of chemistry.

After nearly five years of reform and development, we have created a unique guiding ideology. The goals and orientation are to make CLSES a research-based college centered around the study of the ecological and environment in minority areas, and the issues of minority medicine, and a pedagogic-based college featuring ecology, environmental sciences and ethnic medicine, and coordinating multidisciplinary development. CLSES’s long-term development goals are to build itself into a first-class teaching and research center after 10-15 years of efforts.


There are four teaching sections: biology section, chemistry section, environment section and medicine section; two institutes: the Institute of Resource and Environmental Protection in China’s Ethnic Area, and the Institute of Chinese medicine Engineering Technology; one experiment center comprised of a infrastructure biological laboratory, a infrastructure chemical laboratory, a infrastructure environmental science laboratory, an analytic equipment testing center, and other teaching and research labs; and one general office in CLSES.

Disciplines and Specialties

CLSES has three major categories of undergraduate programs: science, engineering and medicine, further divided into six disciplines and eight undergraduate specialties, in which the biological sciences include biological science and biotechnology, environmental sciences include environmental science and ecology, the chemical category includes chemistry, the chemical and pharmaceutical sciences include pharmaceutical engineering, the Chinese medicine includes Tibetan medicine, and the category of preventive medicine includes preventive medicine.

CLSES is authorized with the right to award MS Degree for four specialties: ecology and botany under Biological Sciences, environmental science under Environmental Science, and ethnic medicine under Chinese Medicine.

By 2006, CLSES has a total number of 850 students, including over 800 undergraduates and 49 postgraduates.


CLSES has a present staff of 51 people, including 37 professional teachers, 7 laboratory technicians, and 7 full-time administrative staff, with an average age of 41 years old.

Among the faculty, there are 10 professors, 19 associate professors; 19 MS tutors. 25 of them have doctorate degrees (10 postdoctoral and 4 doctoral candidates), and 10 people with master’s degrees.

To improve the level of faculty, the College increased the introduction of high-level personnel. In the last five years, it imported one "double-employed" academician, one academic leader and Chief Scientist, three returned overseas teachers, and six postdoctoral teachers. The specialty structure, diploma structure and title structure of the faculty has been greatly improved, and the academic standards have been similarly enhanced.

In the faculty, five people have got the national "Baogang Steel Outstanding Teachers’ Award", three are "Major Outstanding Young College Teachers of Beijing", one is the "Pacesetter of Innovative Technology in Beijing", one got the "Candlelight Cup Award of Ethnic Education of Beijing", and one is the “Top 10 Teacher” of CUN.

Discipline Construction

CLSES is a multidisciplinary and comprehensive college, so it has always emphasized the construction of its advantageous and featured disciplines and meanwhile maintained the other disciplines. With the help of the State Ethnic Affairs Committee and university, CLSES’s Ecology specialty became one of the key specialties of the State Ethnic Affairs Committee in 2001.

In order to strengthen the construction of the key specialty, Ecology, and make it into a distinctive first-class one in China, CLSES has determined the development direction to develop ecology on the basis of biological sciences, and develop environmental sciences on the basis of chemistry, according to the characteristics of the existing disciplines and specialties.

According to CUN’s construction goals in the "211 project" and the "985 project", CLSES undertook the construction of the "Key Discipline of Ecological Environment in Minority Regions" in the "211 Project", and the construction of "Research Center of Ethnic Population, Resources & Ecological Environment" and "Research Center of Minority Health and Traditional Minority Medicine Development" in the "985 Project", and planned to focus on the construction of ecological subjects, environmental studies and ethnic medical disciplines in the next five years, in order to make the three key disciplines the national first-class teaching and research centers.

Scientific Research

According to the needs of economic development and ecological environment construction in ethnic areas and the development direction of the College, CLSES has decided on the following main directions of research: (1) biodiversity and ecological countermeasures in ethnic regions; (2) biological resource use and protection in ethnic regions; (3) environmental change and environmental impact assessment studies in ethnic regions; (4) ecological planning studies in ethnic regions; (5) ecological environmental protection and community development in ethnic regions; (6) minority protection of traditional knowledge and benefit-sharing.

CLSES has taken on 973 major national infrastructure research and planning projects, and over 20 of national scientific research projects, State Natural Science Fund projects, the Ministry of Education’s projects, the State Ethnic Affairs Committee’s projects. Particularly in the last five years, CLSES’s scientific research capacity and level of academic research has been greatly improved. For example, from 2005 to 2006, CLSES received eight projects of the State Natural Science Fund, one Beijing Education Commission’s cooperative project of industry, teaching and research, and one project of the State Fund for returned overseas personnel. The total research fund adds up to more than 100 million RMB.

Achievements in Pedagogic and Scientific Research

1. Achievements in Pedagogic Research

CLSES has undertaken two provincial- and ministerial-level pedagogic research projects and nine university-level pedagogic research projects. It has won a national second prize for outstanding teaching achievements, 16 provincial- and ministerial-level awards and honorary titles, 18 university-level awards and honorary titles. It has also published more than 20 papers on pedagogic research and five textbooks.

2. Achievements in Scientific Research

CLSES has published more than 300 scientific papers in important academic journals at home and abroad, among which there are 30 admitted by SCI and more than 200 published in core domestic publications. It has published four academic works. There have been 10 items of scientific research achievements that have got national- and provincial-level progress awards, four that have got university-level outstanding research achievement awards, six that have been transferred and applied. CLSES got in 2001 one collective award for outstanding research achievements given by CUN, in 2005 two awards for outstanding investigation reports given by the State Ethnic Affairs Committee, and in 2006 two second prizes of investigation report given by the State Ethnic Affairs Committee.