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About HNU

Our history

Hunan University is part of one of the four famous academies of the Song Dynasty, dating back to the founding of the Yuelu Academy in 976 AD. We have maintained our culture and high standards in the face of numerous changes for over a millennium.

This institution was reconstructed into Hunan Institute of Higher Learning in 1903, renamed Hunan University in 1926, and subordinated to the Republic of China's Ministry of Education as one of several state universities in 1937. After liberation and the founding of the People's Republic of China, the Central People's Government appointed Li Da, a well-known philosopher and educator, as the first President of Hunan University; while Chairman Mao Zedong wrote the name for the University.

Since 1963, the University has been affiliated with the Ministry of Mechanical Industry. In 1978 it was approved as a key and comprehensive university of China, and became directly affiliated with the Ministry of Education in 1998. In 2000, Hunan University and Hunan Institute of Finance and Economics merged, as a new, wide ranging University took shape.

A digital campus

Our University covers a total area of 1,531,960 sq.m., with a construction area of over 1045,930 sq.m. With a collection of more than 6.9 million books and 128TB of digital resources (Chinese and English), we are also equipped with an advanced IPv6 campus network. 10GB wired cable backbone network covers all the teaching buildings and office buildings, and students' apartments, along with a wireless campus network. More than 30,000 computers have access to the campus network, backed by a bandwidth of 5.2G. This enables multi-channel teaching, as well as our administration and services based on mobile technology. Furthermore, National Supercomputing Centre of Changsha has been put into use.

Our facilities and achievements

Our University is well equipped with top class facilities:

  • 2 state key laboratories
  • 2 national-level international research centre
  • 1 national-level international research centre
  • 1 key discipline laboratory of the Commission for Science, Technology and Industry for National Defence (COSTIND)
  • 5 key laboratories of the Ministry of Education
  • 4 engineering technology centres of the Ministry of Education
  • 20 laboratories of Hunan Province
  • 2 provincial engineering laboratory
  • 4 key laboratories of institutions of higher learning of Hunan Province
  • 3 key laboratories for the mechanical industry
  • 17 provincial-level social science research bases.

In addition, the University has set up Technopark Co. Ltd., and provided resources for 56 projects in the Enterprise-University Research Institute, located at the Lugu High-tech Industrial Park. This institute collaborates with 32 provinces and over 1,000 enterprises. The National Supercomputing Centre of Changsha, which was also founded by the University, has started working with the Government and a number of enterprises. For the past decade, the University has undertaken approximately 10,000 scientific research projects, and has received the following awards:

  • 3 national natural science second class awards
  • 4 national technological invention second class awards
  • 1 science and technology advancement first class award, plus 18 national second class awards
  • Outstanding achievements in humanities and social sciences, including 14 first class awards and 27 second class awards
  • Outstanding achievements in philosophy and social sciences in Hunan Province, including 8 first class awards and 26 second class awards.

In recent years, the University as a whole has earned numerous achievements, such as:

  • 1 first prize and 7 second prizes in the National Teaching Achievement Assessment
  • 25 courses were rated for national excellence.

From 2013-2017, students from Hunan University have won nearly 1400 awards for contests above provincial level, including first prize in the National Extracurricular Academic Science and Technology Work Competition, Champion of the CCTV Cup English Speaking Contest, first prize in the Mathematical Contest in Modeling (MCM), and the Perseverance Award at the Formula SAE. 

Professor Keqin Li, IEEE Fellow,
Distinguished Professor of Chinese National 1000 Talent Plan
College of Computer Science and
Electronic Engineering

Hunan University upholds the thousand-years-old tradition of "seeking truth from facts" from the Yuelu Academy.HNU has the most diligent and intelligent students and faculty with farsightedness and capabilities,and is developing into a world-class research university with established and continued honor.

Dr. Hyeon-Jong Hwang
Assistant Professor
College of Civil Engineering, Hunan University

HNU helps me to get used to the new surroundings. Youth program fund for young faculty supports my research and international exchange."

Students and academic staff

There are nearly 36,000 students at the University, of which more than 20,000 are undergraduates and 15,000 postgraduates.

In terms of teaching and courses, the University has established:

  • National basic course teaching bases in science and engineering (chemistry)
  • National undergraduates' cultural quality education base
  • 7 national level teaching teams
  • 6 bilingual model courses
  • 6 innovation/talent cultivation centres
  • 4 national model experimental teaching centres.

The University currently has over 4,000 staff, with more than 1,950 faculty members. This number includes:

  • Over 1,400 Professors and Associate Professors
  • 5 members of the Chinese Academy of Sciences and Chinese Academy of Engineering
  • 3 invited members at both Chinese Academies of Sciences and Engineering
  • 38 members of the state's Thousands Talents programme
  • 20 members of the state’s Ten Thousand Talents programme
  • 17 Cheung Kong Scholars’ programme Chair Professors
  • 19 National Outstanding Youth Fund award winners
  • 5 members of the Academic Degree Commission under the State Council
  • 22 members of the state's Outstanding Talents project of the 21st century
  • 134 candidates for the New Century Excellent Talents within the Ministry of Education support programmes
  • 201 Council Experts for Special Allowance
  • 4 National Distinguished Teacher prize winners
  • 8 innovative teams that are supported by the programme for Cheung Kong Scholar’s and Innovative Research team.
  • 4 innovative research teams that are supported by the National Natural Science Foundation

Looking to the future

We have successfully completed the transition from teaching university to research university. We have the infrastructure essential for a comprehensive and research intensive university, and are aiming to become one of the top league Chinese universities by 2026. By 2050, we plan to be an internationally renowned research intensive university.