The Management Objectives of Tamkang University
The management objectives of Tamkang University have been constructed by its founder and presidents through consensus among TKU faculty and staff gathered in numerous meetings over a long period of time. The objectives, imaged as the main parts of the University’s Chinese palace-style classroom, are embodied by the “House of Quality” for Tamkang, bearing upon the mission, vision, values, strategies, and governance of TKU. The House of Quality has served as a blueprint for full participation by the entire school.
To maintain Tamkang’s venerable heritage, create a positive influence on society, and nurture talented, ambitions professionals.
To realize educational ideals in private schooling and create an environment of academic excellence.
To pursue the university motto of ‘Simplicity, Firmness, Perseverance, and Fulfillment’, while upholding academic freedom and institutional autonomy.
Wave-by-Wave Development and Four Distinct Campuses
Since its inception in 1950, Tamkang University has undergone four separate “waves” of development. The first “wave” began in 1950 and continued until 1980. During this phase, Tamkang University placed equal emphasis on quality and quantity in education. The second phase, from 1980 to 1996, focused on quality over quantity. Subsequently, from 1996 to 2005, Tamkang’s “third wave” of development involved the internationalization of university operations and academic pursuits. Since 2005, TKU has been working on its fourth phase of development. This phase is characterized by transformation.
During the fourth wave, the Lanyang Campus was completed. It is one of Taiwan’s more pioneering campuses, with over 90% of its courses offered in English. TKU now has four campuses: the Tamsui Campus, the Taipei Campus, the Lanyang Campus, and the Cyber Campus. These campuses, although each displaying unique characteristics, work in unity to bring about each new wave of university development.
The Three Circles and Five Disciplines of Education
The ‘Three Circles and Five Disciplines of Education’ refers to the structure of education adopted by Tamkang University for the purpose of producing successful, well-rounded graduates.
The ‘Three Circles’ corresponds to three kinds of courses: professional, core and extracurricular. Professional courses are the regular courses offered by TKU colleges and departments. Core courses, on the other hand, are those provided by the Center for General Education and Core Curriculum. Together, these courses have produced outstanding results. The third link in the ‘Three Circles’ are extracurricular courses, which are designed by the Office of Student Affairs and help to foster a spirit of teamwork among students.
The ‘Five Disciplines’ of education refers to the qualities of conduct, intelligence, physical education, teamwork, and beauty. By integrating these values into the professional, core, and extracurricular curriculum, Tamkang University helps to produce well-rounded students skilled in identifying and solving problems. As a result, TKU students develop characteristics favored by both local and overseas employers.
TKU’s Triple Objectives
Tamkang University’s “Triple Objectives of Education” forms the cornerstone of its policy for sustainable development. The Triple Objectives consist of globalization, information-oriented and future-oriented education.
The results of TKU’s ongoing policy of globalization have become especially noticeable in recent years. TKU now has 145 partner universities in 30 countries; each year, approximately 430 TKU students head overseas for a year of student exchange; while at any given time, over 1000 foreign, Chinese, and overseas Chinese students are enrolled to study at Tamkang.
Tamkang has long been a pioneer in information processing. Since the establishment of the Office of Information Services in 1968, Tamkang has applied computer technologies to administration, teaching, research, and services. Its vision is to create the most attractive information-oriented campus available.
Following the tremendous impact that technology had on Taiwanese society in the 1960s, the Founder of Tamkang University, Dr. Clement C.P. Chang, started to aggressively introduce Futures Studies in Taiwan. He founded “The Future of Tomorrow,” a pioneer magazine about Futures Studies, and encouraged the holding of seminars and courses on Futures Studies. By taking undergraduate or postgraduate Futures Studies’ courses, students today learn how to better perceive the future, adjust to its changing nature, and work together to create an even better future.
Setting up the Sigmoid Curve
The development of any organization is composed of several S curves. The initial phase is slow to materialize. It then evolves rapidly into the maturity phase at the climax of its development. Inevitably, it will enter into a phase of decline. Therefore, before the organizations on campus reach maturity, a new S curve should be implemented to avoid the eventual phase of decline. TKU’s wave developments consist of many series of S curves.
Promoting the Matthew Effect
Private universities are always confronted with the disadvantage of limited resources. The Matthew Effect purports that the strong become stronger due to their command of superior resources and by focusing on their strengths. Therefore, TKU should focus on its strengths and become more competitive by emphasizing its unique characteristics. A university’s reputation is enhanced as it receives increased grants from the government and public recognition for its achievements.
TKU’s Leadership System
The management team of TKU is headed by the President, who leads three Vice Presidents responsible for academic, administrative, and international affairs respectively. The Provost of the Lanyang Campus and each dean and chairperson play a critical role in the management team, which works to implement the four management models of TKU – collegial, bureaucratic, political and market-based.
Four Management Models
The four management models of TKU – collegial, bureaucratic, political and market-based – are applied to the teaching, administrative and leadership levels. Differentiated, individualized, holistic, and globalized thinking models are also adopted to attend to the problems of cost, efficiency, production and effectiveness. TKU implements these four management models of governance so as to adapt to the changing environment in a timely manner, and achieve the goal of sustainable management.
Total Quality Management
The concept of Total Quality Management (TQM) was introduced to TKU in 1992. The president at the time, who also served as the Chair of the TQM Committee, pushed for the comprehensive implementation of TQM on the TKU Tamsui Campus. Ever since, a TQM Seminar and a Teaching and Administrative Work Reform Seminar have been held each year to help faculty and staff improve their quality of instruction, administrative work and service. In 2006, the Tamkang Quality Award was introduced and is now awarded annually to offices and departments that display outstanding performance in TQM.
When confronted with challenges, TKU is able to adjust its organization structures and reorganize rapidly to take full advantage. Responding in 2002 to the drive for multiple channels of admission recommended by the Ministry of Education, as well as a more competitive educational environment, TKU established an Office of Admissions. In 2004, the Office of Student Housing was set up to manage students housing both on and off campus. In 2006, the Center for Learning and Teaching was inaugurated to improve teaching quality and help students learn more effectively. Finally, in 2007, the position of Vice President for International Affairs was established to promote the integration of international exchange and education. As a result, TKU is always prepared to face any challenges that arise and respond accordingly.