Air Force Medical University (AFMU) launched its graduate programs in 1962 and 31 graduate students were trained between 1962 and 1965. After the restoration of China’s graduate education in 1978 following a 13-year break, the university restarted its graduate programs. It became one of the first batch of national universities authorized to confer master’s and doctoral degrees in 1981. Pilot graduate school was founded with the approval of Ministry of Education in June, 2000. Formal graduate school was founded in June, 2001 and was accredited by Ministry of Education in June, 2004. Graduate School is composed of admission and teaching division, discipline construction and academic degree division, and three regiments of graduates. The main tasks of Graduate School consist of admission of postgraduates, career guidance, teaching and academic development, conferment of academic degree, post-doctoral administration, discipline construction, construction of “World-top Disciplines and Universities”, and construction of “Key Disciplines and Universities”, “211 Project”, “2110 Project” and “530 Project”.
Graduate School has created a favorable environment for graduate education with the solid foundation of AFMU. At the university there are 10 centers for post-doctoral researchers, 12 first-level disciplines with the certified conferment of academic doctoral degrees, 12 first-level disciplines with the certified conferment of academic master’s degree, 10 second-level disciplines beyond national directory, 6 interdisciplines, and 65 second-level or third-level disciplines. The university confers professional doctorate in two fields and professional master’s degree in nine fields. The academic degree authorization system of AFMU is mainly based on medicine, covering such disciplines as pedagogy, science, engineering and management and it mainly confers academic degrees as well as professional degrees. At the university there are 15 national key disciplines, 4 national key cultivation disciplines, 2 national key laboratories, 5 construction programs of “Key Disciplines and Universities”, 12 key disciplines supported by Phase III of “211 Project”, 4 key disciplines supported by Phase III of military “2110 Project”, and 4 key disciplines supported by Phase II of “530 Project” from General Logistics Department of PLA. At the university there are 2 national research centers for clinical medicine, 20 military construction programs of national key clinical specialties, 28 specialized medical centers of PLA, 14 logistics laboratories of PLA, and 15 key medical laboratories of PLA.
AFMU has a galaxy of high-caliber faculty, with 339 supervisors for doctoral candidates and 579 supervisors for postgraduates for master’s degree. Among them there is 1 academician of the Chinese Academy of Sciences, 4 academicians of the Chinese Academy of Engineering, 33 Cheung Kong Scholars, 7 chief scientists of “973 Project”, 20 awardees of National Science Fund for Distinguished Young Scholars, and 5 members of discipline appraisal group of Academic Degree Commission of the State Council.
Graduate School has cultivated more than 15,000 graduates for PLA and China by July, 2018, including over 4200 graduates with doctorate. 1042 graduate students are currently studying at the university, among whom 336 are doctoral candidates. 11 dissertations have been awarded the prize of National Excellent Doctoral Dissertation and 11 dissertations were nominated the prize. 43 dissertations have been awarded the prize of Military Excellent Doctoral Dissertation and 53 theses have been awarded the prize of Military Excellent Thesis. 116 dissertations have been awarded the prize of Excellent Doctoral Dissertation of Shaanxi Province. Many graduates of our university are now backbones and discipline leaders of medical and health domain at military and national levels.
Graduate School has established a normative graduate cultivation system, with a training mechanism that graduate education is closely combined with scientific research and that graduate students for academic degree and professional degree are separately cultivated, and with a quality management system that postgraduate admission, curriculum study, project research, practical activities, thesis/dissertation defense, and degree authorization have been systematically controlled. In recent years Graduate School has blazed many new trials in graduate education to ensure the quality of talents, such as the program of excellent non-military students for master’s degree with the exemption from graduate entrance examination, the successive MD-PhD program, the program of top second-year graduates for master’s degree to study for doctorate, the program of funding for doctoral research, the China Scholarship Council Program for overseas graduate education, and the program of scholarships and grants for graduate students.
Graduate School will further facilitate the scientific development of graduate education in the new era by cultivating high-caliber medical personnel who will meet the needs of the army and the country through deepening educational reform and bringing forth new ideas in cultivation mechanism.