The School of Continuing Education (SCE) and the School of Vocational Education (SVE) are actually one organization of Southwest University for Nationalities (SWUN). It takes charge of administering adult higher education, self-taught examinations for higher education, and vocational education.
Adult education in SWUN started in 1951. In 1979, SWUN launched the University Teacher Correspondence Undergraduate Program for Chinese Language and Literature, which set the stage for adult education of the University. In July 1992, the State Ethnic Affairs Commission approved the establishment of the Adult Education Administrative Office in SWUN. In November 1994, the State Ethnic Affairs Commission issued the Agreement on the Establishment of the School of Adult Education in Southwest College for Nationalities, according to which, the School of Adult Education（SAE) was founded at the site of teaching and practice base on Taipingyuan Campus, in the south outskirt of Chengdu. In September 1995, SAE started to offer educational service. On June 1, 1996, CAE was inaugurated.
In 1999, the Leading Group of Self-taught Examinations for Higher Education was set up, with its office located at SAE. This announced the start of self-taught examinations for higher education in SWUN. In December 2011, SWUN issued Notice on Rename of the School of Adult Education (X. D. F.  No. 43); thereafter, the School of Adult Education was renamed as the School of Continuing Education (SCE).
In 2001, the School of Vocational Education was inaugurated, marking the start of vocational education at SWUN.