Practice and Thought on Education and Training of Farmer in China
Farmers’ education and training is an essential element and means for building new socialist countryside and promoting agricultural modernization with Chinese characteristics, and is of strategic, fundamental and radical significance to the balanced development between the rural and urban areas and the overall building of well-off society. The Central Agricultural Broadcasting and Television School (CABTS) enjoys distinctive advantages of co-hosting teaching programs, competitive costs, providing much convenience to learners, being conducted in large-scale, boasting of large number of students and focus on practice. Therefore, the CABTS plays an important role in farmers’ education and training, and is a major player in China’s long-distance agricultural education and farmers’ education and training.
In the past decade of the 21st century, given the acceleration of industrialization and urbanization and the implementation of pro-farmer policies in China, remarkable achievements were made in China’s agriculture and rural economy. Correspondingly, China is faced with different situation and challenges. It is found that the uplift of agricultural productivity is more and more relied on technological advancement, improving farmers’ technological competence. Meanwhile, the functionalities of agriculture and the rural areas are further expanded, the forms and players of agricultural operations are much diversified, and the migration of rural labors is of new features. All of those proposed new tasks and higher requirements to farmers’ education and training. It is imperative to make new explorations in practice and more innovations in theoretical study.
The author has the opportunity to be involved in long-distance agricultural education. His continuous pondering on the legislation, policy-making, student targeting, innovations in teaching methods and teaching evaluation and management brought along a series of basic ideas and methodologies. Based on learning from foreign countries, he put forward that rural long-distance education in China might selectively introduce the mainstream, substitution and upgraded model of combining digital and Internet-based technologies with traditional technologies. With regard to the new situation and changes in China’s rural and agricultural developments, he proposed that farmers’ education in China should be in line with the national rural and agricultural policies, the realities of local economic and social development, and the learning needs of farmers themselves. It is his belief that farmers’ education and training should be farmer-centered, focus on tangible and practical results, build up farmers’ capacity, encourage farmers to start up their own business and boost the thinking that education should last life-long. He also advocated that farmers’ education and training should shift from employment-centered to start-up-centered, from traditional farmers to vocational farmers, from experience-based to knowledge-based, from family operation to organizational operation, and from passive acceptors to active players. It is our goal to build teams of outstanding rural cadres, farmer technicians, high-caliber back-bone farmers, outstanding farmer entrepreneurs, and skilled farmer workers.
The author honored to compile all his speeches and articles for domestic and international forums or published at journals, hoping that the Book will make its due contribution to farmers’ education and training in China, attracting more attention to the course, and inspiring more in-depth thinking and study.
The Book is composed of five parts. Part One Study and Exploration I collected theses submitted for international seminars from 2001 to 2010. Part Two Study and Exploration II collected reports and theses published home from 2003 to 2010. Part Three CABTS System Building and Corporate Culture collected theses and reports covering CABTS system building and corporate culture. Part Four Observations and Perspectives mainly collected articles published on domestic journals from 2003 to 2010. Part Five Essays of the Rest comprises sparks of thoughts that are not systematic but might be thought-provoking.
Published by China Agriculture Press, September 2011