Future -Oriented Education
The third of Tamkang University's innovative major objectives is future-oriented education. Future-oriented education at Tamkang University dates back to 1968 when Dr. Clement C. P. Chang in his article entitled "The Future Trends of World Civilization" emphasized the importance of "futures studies," thus introducing futures studies to the Republic of China. Dr. Chang's pioneering idea was further realized by introducing books on future studies to TKU faculty and students, such as Knowledge Explosion, Catch the Future, The Limit of Growth, and by The Birth of The World of Tomorrow, a monthly on futures studies inaugurated by Tamkang University on January 10, 1975. Dr. Chang's Education in the Twenty-First Century, published in 1978, laid a solid foundation for Tamkang's educational philosophy, which emphasizes a "global view and future-oriented education". Most of all, in 1980 Tamkang was elevated from the status of college to university. At that time, Dr. Chang wrote "Looking Forward Thirty Years in the Future: 1980-2010," in which he pointed out the academic role Tamkang should play in Taiwan and the world, giving a guideline for the University's future development. Under this direction, Tamkang's mission toward future-oriented education is "to recognize the future, adjust to the future, and create the future" so as to enable students to recognize the changing world, to face that world, and, moreover, to create their own future world.
To realize this mission, Tamkang has set up the following objectives: 1) to strictly carry out the design and instruction of core courses on futures studies; 2) to make general courses future-oriented; and 3) to make future-oriented innovations in instruction, research, administration and service. Accordingly, Tamkang University has for many years offered a course "Futures Studies" open to all majors. And beginning in 1993, the University has sent faculty and students to attend annual “Conference of World Future Society(WFS) and World Futures Studies Federation(WFSF).”
In order to fully carry out this policy, the Division of Futures Studies was inaugurated in 1995 under the Center for Educational Development. The division offered undergraduate courses in five major areas: futures studies in society, technology, economy, environment and politics. It also designed several graduate courses related to futures studies. In 2000, the division was elevated to the Status of the Center for Futures Studies. The center has published quarterly Journal of Futures Studies, kept actively ordering and exchanging essays, journals, and books, coordinating scholarly discussion via international conferences, workshops, and websites, and co-sponsoring seminars with WFS, WFSF, and Foundation for the Future (FFF). The Institute has also received a four-year research grant from the Ministry of Education to integrate undergraduate futures related courses into a futures research program. Most importantly, a the Graduate Institute of Futures Studies has commenced Fall 2002. The goals are: 1) To equip students with the capability of environmental scanning, scenario building and visioning within an integrated context of social change; 2)To cultivate students as future global elites with critical and innovative thinking in the fields of education and social sciences; 3)To enhance students' ability as policy and planning experts with great interest in local and global issues.
In addition to endeavoring under the triple objective of "globalization, information-oriented education, and future-oriented education," Tamkang University is currently re-engineering its "Fourth Wave" so as to realize its ultimate goal of becoming a first-rate international university.