As the general education/liberal arts education college of Peking University, Yuanpei college shoulders the important task of exploring the reform of liberal arts education at Peking University.
On September 20, 2001, the Yuanpei Program Management Committee of Peking University was established. At the same time, the Yuanpei Program Executive Committee and the Yuanpei Program Experimental Class were established to continue to implement the teaching policy of Peking University, to actively and steadily promot the reform of Peking University's undergraduate education ,and to carry out the exploration and practice of talent training mode.
On January 25, 2002, the President of Peking University appointed the first Yuanpei tutor, and the students of the experimental class of the Yuanpei Program implemented the free course credit system and the free choice of major system within the teaching plan formulated under the guidance of the tutor.
In September 2002, the experimental class of the Yuanpei Program was enrolled in the national undergraduate enrollment according to the two major categories of arts and science. Students were enrolled regardless of major, and general education and university basic education were implemented in the lower grades to strengthen and broaden the student base;the program also implemented wide-caliber professional education in the upper grades, focusing on practice and innovation ability cultivation. At the same time, respecting students' interests, choices and individual differences, students can freely choose majors in principle.
In September 2006, the Peking University-Yale Joint Undergraduate Training Program was launched in Yuanpei College. From then on, students of Yuanpei College could participate in or initiate various international exchange programs, student exchange programs, international volunteer service projects, international forums on general education, etc.
On September 6, 2007, the first non-professional undergraduate college of Peking University "Yuanpei College" was officially established, marking a new stage in the reform of undergraduate education of Peking University, and becoming one of the 40 moments of Peking University in the 40 years of reform and opening up.
In 2008, Yuanpei College successively set up two interdisciplinary majors: "Paleontology" and "Philosophy, Politics and Economics".
In May 2009, Yuanpei College won the first prize of National Excellent Teaching Achievement, and Yuanpei College became one of the first batch of "National Innovative Talent Training Reform Plan Experimental Zone" of the Ministry of Education.
In 2010, S. H. Ho Library was officially established, which is a library independently managed by students of Yuanpei College.
In August 2011, Yuanpei College began to realize centralized accommodation in Building 36, and the exploration of the residential college entered the practical stage.
On September 14, 2011, Yuanpei College of Peking University held the 10th anniversary celebration and seminar on undergraduate education reform.
In 2011, Yuanpei College set up a third interdisciplinary major "Foreign Language and Foreign History".
In August 2014, Yuanpei College set up a freshman training camp program to help new students adapt to university life faster.
In September 2014, Yuanpei College set up a fourth interdisciplinary major "Integrated Science", and explored a new model of general education by providing core courses of general education for the whole college.
In August 2015, Yuanpei College began to live in a centralized manner in Building 35, and the college began to work independently in the Building of Russian, which significantly enlarged the public space and improved learning and living hardware conditions available for student activities.
In September 2015, Yuanpei College set up a fifth interdisciplinary major "Data Science and Big Data Technology", opened a freshman seminar project, and gradually formed a system of freshman admission counseling.
In September 2018, Yuanpei cooperated with all faculties and departments of the university to build richer freshman seminars and more diverse core courses of general education, and further improved the general education system of the college.
In June 2019, Yuanpei College started the underground space renovation project in Building 35 to improve hardware conditions for the residential college.