Early Career Researchers Network in Higher Education Studies

China’s Ethnic Minority Educational Preferential Policy at the Crossroads – A Case Study of the Bonus Score Policy: More, Less or Gone?

Speaker: Ms Zhepin ZHUANG  La Trobe University

Chair: Dr Jisun JUNG  The University of Hong Kong

Date: September 30, 2022 (Friday)

Time: 15:00-16:00 (HK Time) by zoom

Registration: Click here


The bonus score treatment is a long-held but controversial educational preferential policy for Chinese minority students in the yearly National University Entrance Examination. Being a core component of China’s ethnic preferential policy, the bonus score treatment has been undergoing a diminishing trend nationwide amid a deepening of the reforms. This article investigates a complete set of the policy documentation issued by China’s central government and various local governments. The findings indicate that the bonus score policy reform aims to more precisely target the regions and ethnic minorities with the most need. Meanwhile, drilling down to deeper levels of details, the article argues that the educational preferential policy has been shifted even though the State-Party never officially admits it. It is prudently but adamantly tightening the relatively liberal and preferential ethnic minority educational policy, aimed a trend of foster a strong sense of community for the Chinese nation under Xi Jinping’s era.


Zhepin Zhuang is a second-year Ph.D. candidate in the School of Humanities and Social Sciences, La Trobe University. As a former lecturer at Wenzhou Polytechnic, she gained eight years of significant professional and teaching experience in the academic sphere. Currently, she is undertaking research focused on higher education for ethnic minorities in China.