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Tianjin University opens classes to guide students on love affairs


04-16-2016 16:42 BJT

Northern China’s Tianjin University has recently opened a selective course on love, which teaches students tips on dating to help ensure a successful relationship. CCTV’s Tang Bo went to the college to find out why the school has decided to give lessons in what is possibly the most difficult subject of all.

In search of better relationships…

These students at Tianjin University are taking part in a selective course that explains in detail romantic relationships, as well as techniques on how to handle them.

The course is called “Love Theory and Practice”, and covers a wide range of topics from dating tips and etiquette, to counseling.

“It’s hard to find a girlfriend when there are more guys than girls in our school. So I’m here to learn something about it," said a student.

“I came here because I have no idea how to get to know the guy that I’ve had a crush on," said another student.

Over 800 students applied for a seat in the class soon after its debut in March.

It's popularity has been far beyond the school’s expectation.

“Feedback has mostly been positive. Students are eager to know more, especially when it comes to dating and dressing etiquette, and proper conversation styles," said Xie Shu, counselor at Tianjin University.

The love courses in Tianjin University are not arranged by teachers, but by one of the school’s student associations. It has no text books to lean on, nor are there any assessments or final examinations. The critiques say it’s not professional enough and is a waste of resources. But the course founder says they simply want to provide a service to meet an obvious demand.

Hu Xue is one of the founders of student dating club Matchmaking Meetup at Tianjin University.

After establishing the club, she found that many students had problems with maintaining smooth relationships. This led her to also initiate the love courses. 

“Many of my friends came to complain about their relationship problems and asked for advice. I realized that they didn’t have a proper attitude towards love and didn’t know how to cope with problems well. That further affected their studies. So we decided to set up the love courses to guide them," she said.

The university approved their application for the courses, and offered teaching resources necessary for the courses to take place.

“What the students and the club can do is limited. So the school’s Youth League Committee did a lot of research, and contacted many legal, psychological, and relationship experts in and out of the school for them. We want to promote correct and positive attitudes towards love and a more systematic understanding about people’s relationships," said Lv Jing, secretary of Youth League Committee, Tianjin University.

College relationships have been openly discussed across Chinese third-level institutions. Many programs have been founded to help students make their way through what could be a minefield.

The problems that can arise can be seen in the increasing number of college students who committed suicide for love in recent years in China.

Yang Li, director of the Mental Health Education center at Tianjin University, says the lack of the capacity to deal with failures in love has a lot to do with students' parents.

“Problematic marital relationships will affect the way their children treat and handle intimate partnerships. The lack of fathers’ or mothers’ love would make the students very fragile when their partners broke up with them. So we need to rethink and provide students with professional help based on that finding," she said.

University education is about more than just academic achievement.

For many, often away from home for the first time, their time in college is their first chance for love affairs after dedicating years to studies in high schools.

Falling in love at college is normal, and what people are doing here is trying to make it a beautiful memory, rather than a painful one.

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