The common people should follow the traditions and rules which made by gentlemen. In ancient Chinese culture, there was no need for the common people to know why. For common people, studying Confucianism and be a gentleman had been the most efficient way for them advancing into upper class. During Han dynasty, the first civil service exam was set up. Confucianism, with no surprise, was one of the key subjects to study for the civil service exam. Provincial schools were established countrywide and the Confucianism tradition of education was spread all over China. "To enrich your family, there is no need to buy good land: Books hold a thousand measures of grain. For an easy life, there is no need to build mansion(大厦dàshà): In books are found houses of gold. When you go out, do not be upset if no one follows you: In books there will be a crowd of horses and carriages. If you wish to marry, don’t be upset if you don't have a go-between: In books there are girls with faces like jade. A young man who wishes to be somebody will devote his time to the Classics. He will face the window and read." There were people who spend their entire lifetime studying on Confucianism in order to get respected, not only for themselves, but also for the pride of their family lines.

The civil service exam system from Han dynasty had been used until the Qing dynasty. Changes had been made throughout thousands years of history, more western influence were bought into the Chinese education system during the Qing dynasty. With the humiliating defeat(失败shībài) under the hands of British army in the Opium War (1840-1842), scholars and government(政府zhèngfǔ) officials suggested a major restructure of education system, developing new areas such as foreign language, science and technology. In 1911, the Qing Dynasty itself was overthrown by revolution, and a republican form of government was established. At that time, government completely abandoned the traditional way of education. New educational models from European, American and Japanese were set up in China.