The subject of journalism and communication of Wuhan University originated from 1980s. With the development of the country, it thrives under changes and innovation.
Aided by former Principal Liu Daoyu, Wuhan University established the Department of Journalism in September, 1983 .Professor Wu Zhaorong was the first dean of the department, and Wu Lengxi, the chairman of China Journalists Association, was the honorary dean. professor Bi Huanwu and He Wei taught in the department too. In 1984, the department enrolled the first undergraduates of Journalism. In the next year, it acquired the qualification to grant the master's degree and began to enroll graduate students. The major of Broadcasting and Telecommunication was established in 1985 and the major of Advertising was established in 1993. The Department of Journalism was modified to the School of Journalism in 1995, and professor Wu Gaofu became the dean. In 1998, Journalism became the key subject of Hubei Province. And it attained the qualification to grant the master's degree of Communication.
On April 1999, Wuhan University adjusted its subjects. Then School of Journalism was combined with School of Library and Information into School of Mass Communication and Knowledge and Information Management. In the same year, the School got the qualification to grant Doctor’s degree and began to enroll PhD students of journalism in the next year.
On August 2000, four universities united as the new Wuhan University. During the adjustment of schools on December, the Department of Printing of Wuhan Technology of Geomatics Engineering University was combined with the department of Journalism and Communication of Wuhan University as the School of Journalism and Communication. Professor Luo Yicheng served as the dean of the School. The School was made of 6 departments including Journalism, Broadcasting and Telecommunication, Advertising, Printing and Communication, Package Designing and Network Communication. 8 undergraduate majors were established including Journalism, Broadcasting and Telecommunications, Advertising, Printing Engineering, Package Engineering, Electronic Publishing, Network Communication and Broadcasting and Hosting Art. There were also 3 master’s major directions, that is Journalism, Communication and Printing Engineering. The subject of Journalism and Communication and Printing Engineering were among the national key subjects. And at that time there were 74 teachers including approximately 40 professors and about 1800 students. On September 2002, the new office building was founded to meet the needs of administration, education and experiment.
In April 2004, the Department of Printing and Department of Package became an independent department. And the School of Journalism and Communication( SJC) kept four departments including Journalism, Broadcasting and Telecommunications, Advertising and Network Communication, four undergraduate majors, which were Journalism, Broadcasting and Telecommunication, Advertising, Network Communication, Broadcasting and Hosting Art and Advertising Design. And the school also had 3 Master’s degrees directions (Journalism, Communication and Digital Media) and 3 new Doctor’s degrees directions (Intercultural Communication, Advertising and Operation and Management of Media). In December 2004, the Media Developing Research Center of SJC was approved by the Ministry of Education as a key base for literature and sociology science. Meanwhile, Hubei Province highly appreciated subjects development of SJC. In December 2006, the Experiment Center for Journalism and Communication of WHU was approved by Ministry of Education and became the first national level media experiment center. The center was equipped with the most advanced professional broadcasting studio, multimedia news editing lab, non-linear editing lab of broadcasting and telecommunication, recording studio, photography lab and etc. In the library of SJC there were more than 50000 professional books. The comprehensive education ability of SJC ranked top among other domestic universities. At the end of 2011, there were 42 professors , 25 officers, more than 800 undergraduates and nearly 800 postgraduates in SJC.
The school always emphasized both theory learning and skill training of the students. The education belief of SJC is “Strengthen the Foundation, Focus on the Practice, Serve the Society, Face the Future”. SJC attempted to explore a new road to reform the education according to the needs of society. For example, in 1980s, Department of Journalism and China Photography Association established the Class of News Photography. The students in this class won all the first prizes of a photography competition sponsored by Kodak.
As for science research and construction of subjects, the school paid much attention to innovation, trying to explore and solve problems met in the subject. After years, SJC started the research on theory of journalism, practice and culture of journalism and communication, journalism in Taiwan, Hongkong and Macau, comparison between Chinese and western news, development of ideology of journalism and communication, theory and practice of advertising. There are many famous and precious books written by scholars in SJC, like Comparison Between Chinese and Western News by Prof. Fei Fan and Prof. Shan Bo, Journalist As A Author by Prof. Wu Zhaorong, Guide to News Interviews and New Guide to News Interviews by Prof. Luo Yicheng and Fundamental Theory of Journalism by Prof. Wu Gaofu. During the 7th Five-Year Plan of China, the Department of Journalism took the job of editing and writing teaching materials of theory of journalism and writing of journalism for national teaching organization. During 8th and 9th Five-Year Plan, SJC took responsibility of 6 national key projects. Meanwhile, more than 10 research results won rewards of national level and provincial level. SJC emphasized that the theory had to be the guide of practical activity. So it cooperated with news media and set up research on morality of news employees, audience of TV and relationship between communication and economical reform in Wuhan.
As for domestic and international academic exchanges, the Department of Journalism set up relationship with USA, Japan, Australia, Canada as well as Taiwan, Hongkong and Macau for cooperation and academic exchanges. SJC would assign young teachers to learn in top universities and news media in China in order to improve the teaching and research level of the faculty team. The school also recruited some famous scholars of journalism and experienced media employees as part-time professor or honorary professor. Meanwhile， SJC remained a long-time and friendly relationship with many famous media in China, which set a propitious foundation for education of journalism and communication.
In 2000, Wuhan University offered the education of journalism and communication a new opportunity of development. And this was also a period when Chinese journalism and communication education got into a huge competition. In all projects of SJC, the school always insisted on putting the construction of subjects in the first place. And the school centered on research and education and got replenished by serving the society.
In 2002, the project “Modern Media and Development of Chinese Society and Culture” held mainly by SJC was classified as a key project of 10th Five-Year Plan and 211 Industry,which meant SJC became one of the key national education organization. In 2003, SJC was qualified to establish the PhD programs of Journalism and Communication as the first-level discipline. In 2004, Media Development and Research Center of Wuhan University was permitted by Ministry of Education as the key research base for science of literature and sociology. The Innovative Base of Journalism and Communication with Media Society was classified as a key project in the second round of 985 Project. Two academic journals of SJC, Reviews on Journalism and Communication (2001) and Annual Report on Chinese Media Development (2003), had a great effects in academic field.
Since 2001, SJC has been improving the teaching ability of undergraduate education and the quality of students cultivating. In 2004, students from SJC won 2 first prizes and 6 second prizes in science and research competition among college students in Hubei. In 2004 and 2005, students of SJC consecutively won the championship of China College Student Advertising & TV Debate Competition. Mr. and Miss. Journalism and Who Will Host 2008 Beijing Olympics had a great influence in colleges of Wuhan. On October 2006, SJC got a good feedback from the supervision and evaluation team of Ministry of Education. For the education on postgraduates, the school took new methods like modifications of learning schedule and reform on cultivation system. SJC revised the cultivation plan of postgraduates twice, which made it more appropriate, scientific and regular. Since 2003, the academic results published by postgraduates of SJC consecutively ranked top among other schools of literature arts in WHU and even other universities for many years. Luojia Forum for Journalism and Communication became one of ten academic brands of students. On October 2004, SJC held the first National Academic Forum of Journalism and Communication for PhD students.
In the field of scientific research, the overall power is growing. SJC set the ideology of research according to regular patterns of academic research, the new trend of this subject and the reality of SJC. Since 2001, SJC has took the responsibility of 25 key projects, ranging from international level to provincial level. SJC has a budget for research 2,050,000 RMB per year and published 175 academic journals per year. SJC has published 10 books so far and each year they have about 10 papers to participate the international academic conference. SJC also won 3 prizes from Ministry of Education and 10 provincial prize.
The academic atmosphere are active in SJC. SJC has held 21 national and international conferences of all kinds since 2001. Some of them were highly praised by domestic and foreign scholars, such as Intercultural Communication International Academic Conference (2004), China and USA Media Environment and Reform of Media Academic Conference (2005), Wuhan Optical Valley International Cartoon Annual Salon (2006), Political Communication International Conference (2007), Crisis and Intercultural Communication International Academic Conference (2007), Advertising and Cultural Communication International Academic Conference (2008), Intercultural Communication International Academic Conference (2011).
SJC had a group of influential scholars of this country. Three professors were recruited by Ministry of Education into the Plan of Developing Century Brilliant and Innovative Talent. Prof. Shan Bo and Prof. QiangYuexin were hired as Luojia Special Professor. Prof. Luo Yicheng assumed the job of evaluation team for the subject of journalism and communication. Professor Zhang Haijin was granted as China Advertising Figure of 2006. Meanwhile, SJC pays much attention to develop the talents of young teachers, encourages them to get a higher degree. And the school would send young teachers to study and communicate abroad regularly. The scholar age structure is gradually getting appropriate.
In the future, SJC will put the construction of subject under the historical and cultural process of media society. At the same time, SJC will take foreign advanced university as references to improve academic quality. The aim of SJC is to create better research management system and talent training system, to serve the society with comprehensive academic resources, to remain its leading position among other domestic universities and to make it an international center of journalism and communication research and talent training.