The history of College of Humanities and Social Development (CHSD) could be traced back to the Ancient Agronomy Research Group initially founded by Mr. Xin Shuzhi in 1952, and to the Political Theory Teaching and Research Group in 1953 of Northwest Agricultural College. Since then a number of well-known scholars had been working here including Xin Shuzhi, Shi Hansheng etc.
College now is composed of four departments: Department of Sociology, Department of Public Affairs Management, and Department of Art offering four undergraduate programs (Law, Sociology, Public Affairs Management, and Social Work). The College also has two master’s degree authorizations in first-class disciplines (Sociology, History of Science and Technology), five master's degree authorization disciplines (Environment and Resources Protection Law, Vocational and Technical Education, Rural and Regional Development, Specialized History, Philosophy of Science and Technology) and co-constructs the doctoral degree authorization center of Rural and Regional Development with College of Economy and Management. All these disciplines cover six categories (Law, Education, Philosophy, History, Science of Management and Science). Besides, the CHSD has in-service master’s degree authorization of Agricultural Extension, MPA, MSW and Vocational Education and two Minor Programs (Secretary, Law).
The CHSD now has four research institutes, among which China Agricultural History and Culture Research Center is provincial philosophy and social science research base. Other affiliated institutes include Shaanxi Province Agricultural Law and Environmental Law Research Center, MPA Center of NWAFU, Research Center of Rural Society. And the CHSD is equipped with Moot Court, Room of Bibliographic Retrieval, Data Analysis Laboratory of Social Research, Room of Telephone Interview, and Laboratory of Social Work. Meantime, the college sets up fifteen practice bases for the disciplines of Social Research, Social Work, Law, Public Affairs Management, etc.
The college now has a staff of 72 people, including 9 professors, 18 associate professors; 26 of them are qualified to supervise master’s students. Among the teachers, there is one review team member for National Social Science Fund, one recipient in the "Excellent Young Teachers’ Program, MOE ", one winner in the " Program for New Century Excellent Talents in University, MOE”, two award winners of Outstanding Teachers in NWSUAF, and three young academic backbone faculties of the university. Seven teachers have been funded to study abroad by university or CSC. One person was selected into the Steering Committee of Teaching for Higher Education by MOE (History category teaching guidance committee). 13 teachers are served as vice president of the Society of provincial level or above.
There are 974 undergraduate students, 406 master students and 13 doctoral students in CHSD. And the college also has correspondence education of Law, Public Affairs Management, Sociology and Social Work, to meet the need of society.
In the past 5 years, CHSD has accomplished great academic achievements to meet the national and regional desires for development, and has undertaken over 50 items of key research projects at the national and provincial level with more than 400 published articles in core journals. In the fields of international academic exchange, the college has developed a worldwide cooperative research and academic exchange relationships with universities and research institutions from the countries like Canada, German, etc. The CHSD has held several important academic symposiums, like the 7th International Symposium on East Asia agricultural history, 3rd The National Disaster History Association, Shaanxi Province Sociology Annual Symposium and China Rural Society Development Forum. And has been holding more than 100 symposiums.
In face of the opportunities and challenges of the new century, the faculty will uphold the college motto of "Study of the humanities for the civilized world, for manifesting virtue, for loving the people, and for pursuing the perfection " and concentrate closely on the issues which concern agriculture, countryside and farmers. A generation of teachers and students vigorously promote the development of characteristic discipline which dominate by the history and culture of agriculture and rural development. With the prominent feature in humanistic quality general education, the college will become an important base of cultivating high-level talent in Humanities and Social Sciences in the northwest area.