Curriculum and Teaching Theory

With prominent influence in China, the discipline of curriculum and teaching theory of Department of Physics, Beijing Normal University has made tremendous contributions to the research in elementary and higher education. Yan Jinduo, one of the founders of this program, a veteran in physics teaching and physics education research, was one of the founding fathers of this discipline in China. Prof. Zhao Zheng, supervisor for PhD degree candidates, was a student of Nobel Prize laureate Prof. Ilya Prigogine in his early years and received his PhD degree from Free University of Brussels. Previously serving as Secretary General of China Gravity and Theory of Relativistic Astrophysics Society, Prof. Zhao has long been supervisor of PhD degree candidates on theoretical physics and is currently director of China Physics Society and deputy editor-in-chief of College Physics. We are one of the first master programs in China and the first to enroll PhD degree candidates. Over a hundred master and doctoral degree holders as well as visiting scholars in university have graduated from this program and become backbones of their employers across China. We have organized, for numerous times, the nationwide training program for backbone physics teachers sponsored by Ministry of Education, with hundreds of trainees having become leaders of their fields over the country. Based on the academic prominence of this century-old renowned university and inheriting decades of advancement in this discipline, our program undertakes the mission of guiding the research on physics education in China. Quality has always been the priority in the training of talents, with high standards of international scope, academic profundity and comprehensive competence and principle of quality before quantity. Besides, we constantly strive for excellence in scientific research and academic cooperation and exchange, which has resulted in fruitful achievements. These painstaking efforts, both in theory and practice, prove to be highly significant and influential in high education, normal education and development of basic education.

In recent years, with international horizons in view, our program has conducted a considerable amount of theoretical and pragmatic research, centering upon discipline construction and physics education research while serving the cause of curriculum reform in national basic education and higher education. We have organized and participated in numerous education research projects and online curriculum construction programs, as well as national curriculum standardization, compilation, review and approval of course books based on the new round of curriculum reform. A series of achievements have been made in physics teaching reform, physics education research, training of teachers and curriculum construction.

Currently, the main area of research under our program is physics curriculum and teaching. Our advantages as compared to other programs of the same nature in China lie in our relevance to key programs such as pedagogy and psychology, highly competitive team of teachers of Department of Physics, our wide international horizons, rich academic atmosphere of a research-oriented university, pragmatic and rigorous academic traditions, solid discipline foundation in physics, excellent student pool, outstanding faculty of rational structure of age and expertise and abundant library resources.

With scholar team building and curriculum construction playing a pioneering role, Research Institute of Physics Education shall be established within the next five years, focusing on the basic theories as well as application and development of physics curriculum and teaching theory. As nationwide and international academic cooperation and exchange shall be reinforced, PhD degree candidates will have the opportunity to engage in joint research in overseas universities, hence enriching themselves with latest research achievements in physics education, science education and cognitive science, both in China and overseas while building national and international joint research teams and platforms for in-depth research on pressing theoretical and practical issues in China¡¯s physics education development. On this basis, with theories in combination with practice, a new system of modern physics curriculum and teaching theories with Chinese characteristics shall be structured, thus preparing for deeper reform and development of physics education in China in terms of theories, mindsets, strategies and methodologies.


  • With Research Institute of Physics Education at the core and basic education curriculum and teaching reforms as a platform, we shall build an outstanding team of researchers consisting of university teachers, education researchers and actual teachers from both China and overseas, as well as a number of physics education research bases;
  • A research paradigm consistent with international trend of physics education development and China¡¯s reality shall be formed. On the basis of latest findings and methodologies of physics education research and relevant disciplines in both China and overseas, in-depth research shall be conducted by combining theory with practice, hence obtaining numerous achievements with significant theoretical and practical values and, by and large, constructing a theoretical system of modern physics curriculum and teaching theory with Chinese characteristics;
  • Develop new curriculum based on research and explore for quality education resources which satisfy the needs of new curriculum and promote the development of physics teachers¡¯ competence;
  • Train high quality postgraduate students with international vision, awareness of innovation and practical competences.


Academic Team

Name Birthdate Qualifications Position
Yuying Guo 1957.12 Doctor Professor
Chunmi Li 1966.03 Doctor Professor
Hua Xiang 1964.09 Doctor Associate Professor
Ping Zhang 1964.02 Doctor Associate Professor
Ying Luo 1967.11 Doctor Associate Professor