Study in China
What more can we say about China that you don’t already know? It’s a cradle of culture, philosophy, and art, that changed the course of history with every invention and every dynasty; not to mention the great works of Sun Tzu and Confucius that are still quoted and used as life guide.
Knowing all this, why wouldn’t students wish to come here, especially to be close to the birthplace of the Zen school of Buddhism that encourages individuals to find inner peace and relaxation?
Thinking of the great atmosphere and culture, China seems like the ideal international destination for your studies.
Why study in China?
1. Chinese universities are up there with the best
Whether we focus only on Asia or we look at it from a global perspective, Chinese universities are among the top providers of higher education. Over 100 universities in China earn their places in the well-respected global rankings, which are updated ever year.
2. The government offers a huge number of scholarships
You know the saying "actions speak louder than words"? The Chinese government is the perfect positive example, at least in terms of attracting international students. Local authorities have not only talked about but also invested heavily into creating an inviting environment for non-locals.
It's enough to look at the huge number of scholarships and sponsorships available — over 40,000 — to realise the importance that the government places on attracting international talents.
3. Achieve Chinese language proficiency
Chinese isn't only the most spoken language worldwide, but it is also an in-demand language, one that can help you find well-paid jobs at Chinese companies or subsidiaries all over the world.
Sure, it's not exactly easy to learn Chinese. But if the passion is there and you're open to the idea, studying and living in China for a few years will give you all the needed support to master this language.
4. Make your CV stand out with a diploma from China
With so many CVs looking all the same, it's no wonder that businesses and HR departments are having a hard time finding exceptional candidates. But if you graduate with a diploma from a Chinese university, you won't have this problem as a future job seeker.
Chinese universities are well-respected, and any HR specialist knows that not anybody has the courage or the personal resources to succeed as a student in the world' most populous nation.
5. Explore the Chinese culture
China has a unique culture, with an interesting blend of influences, values, and traditions.
From the Confucian beliefs to the national pride, from the emphasis on family to the immensely popular ping-pong (table tennis), from the Chinese calligraphy to kung fu, and from traditional festivals to the passion for tea — few nations can match China's rich and colourful culture.
Which universities and colleges to attend in China?
China has 44 ranked universities in the top 500. Seeing as it can be difficult to go through all of them and decide which is the best to attend, we decided to only list a few we recommend, but remember to keep your options open:
- Zhejiang University
- Tsinghua University
- Peking University
- Fudan University
- Shanghai Jiao Tong University
What is it like to study in China?
In the student reviews on studying in China, a single phrase gets used over and over: great and innovative facilities.
Apparently, universities know how to take care of their students, making their lives easier and taking care of them, offering free access to materials and equipment.
Classes run from 8 to 12, and usually include presentations and debates, while students are encouraged to work in teams and mingle as much as possible, in order to assure a high level of cultural exchange.
Also, sport and extracurricular activities play a huge role in a student’s life, so be prepared to spend a lot of free time on campus, without regretting it.
What to study in China?
China covers all fields of education, but it can be hard to decide what to study and what are the most lucrative and popular degrees out there. So, because we’re super helpful and awesome, we made this nifty list of the most popular study options in China. They are:
- Masters in International Relations in China
- Masters in Finance in China
- Masters in Business Administration in China
- Masters in Economics in China
- Masters in Computer Science in China
- Masters in Languages in China
Where to study in China?
China is the fourth largest country in the world, so it can be difficult to decide on the city you’re better suited for.
Still, in fairness, nothing compares to the major cities in China, when it comes to universities and student nightlife. So, there’s no wonder pupils flock to study in Beijing in favour of the rest of the cities.
How to apply
Chinese universities receive a lot of applicants yearly, so there are a lot of auxiliary websites for students to ask for help and manage their applications. These websites are:
- CUCAS – where you can apply by yourself online, and it’s an intermediator between you and the university
- CUAC (China University Application Centre) – where you can apply to a university, but also find awesome advisors and professional guides, that can help you with your studying decision
You can also apply on your own, of course, directly at the university you’ve chosen. However, whichever way you decide to apply, the documents needed are the same, which are:
- A passport photo
- A photocopy of your passport
- A photocopy of your visa
- Your ID
- Your health certificate
- Your criminal record (a clean one, hopefully)
- A Chinese / English language proficiency certificate
- Letter of guarantee (parents or legal guardians sign a declaration by which they assume responsibility that you will abide by the rules and regulations of China and of the university)
- Proof that you can support your studies in China
- Certificate / diploma from your last graduated school
- Academic transcripts from your last graduated school
Helpful ways to make sure you qualify for a Chinese university
Take Preparation Courses
These kinds of courses enable degree-seeking students to get an extra educational boost just before they start their Master’s degree or other post-graduate degree programmes. Try a pre-M.B.A., pre-Law, or pre-Medicine programme, as well as any other foundation or preparation courses that will allow you to study in the degree programme of your choice.
Improve your English through an English-language prep course
If you’re attending a degree programme in China, you will need to prove that your language skills are good enough to participate in the classes and understand the lectures. These courses will also prepare you for any of the English-language tests that universities require.
China has a lot of English Master’s programmes. Still, in order to apply to one of them, you will have to prove your proficiency through an English certificate. The ones accepted by Chinese universities are:
Living in China
Let's take a closer look at tuition and living expenses in China:
Tuition fees in China
Before we get to the tuition fees, we should mention the application fees: these vary between 90 and 120 USD.
- At public universities, tuition ranges between 2,500 and 10,000 USD/year.
- At private universities, tuition can reach 30,000 USD and sometimes over 50,000 USD/year depending on your chosen discipline
Students can always check out scholarships and other financial aid to cover their study expenses.
Accommodation, food and other expenses
Living costs in China are similar to those in other popular study destinations. In most Chinese cities, students will need between 600 and 1,000 USD per month. Beijing, Shanghai, and Shenzhen are more expensive; you'll need around 1,000–1,200 USD per month.
Here's a breakdown of the average living expenses in China:
- rent (student residence halls): 150–400 USD/month
- rent (private flat): 300–1,000 USD/month
- rent (living with a Chinese family): 350–550 USD/month
- food and groceries: 170–200 USD/month
- monthly transport pass: 15–20 USD (discounted for students)
- books and study materials: 30–50 USD/semester
- medical insurance: 60 USD for 6 months
China is located at the east coast of the largest continent (Eurasia) as well as the western margin of the largest ocean (Pacific). It has a land area of about 9.6 million square km, occupying 6.5 percent of the total land area of the world. Its population of more than 1.3 billion accounts for approximately one-fifth of the world population.
Facts about China
Before you go study in China, we should first debunk the most famous, yet inaccurate, notion about it, and that’s: if you dig a big enough hole, you will exist through the desert the Road Runner and Wile E. Coyote are chasing through. Well, no… you’ll probably exit in Argentina or Chile. Awesome, right?
Now, speaking of cartoon moments, you should also know that, in ancient China, soldiers used mannequins to lure enemies to shoot arrows at, and then used the mannequins to get a free supply of arrows. If you can picture a Chinese soldier holding a helmet on top of a stick and waving it around, you are allowed to laugh hysterically with me before we move on.
Now, let’s cover some interesting facts about the education in China. For instance:
- Female students in China outperform men to such an extent that some universities have introduced a male quota;
- Students can get 7 years in jail for cheating on exams;
- The oldest piece of paper in the world was found in China and dates back to the second or first century B.C. Paper was so durable, it was sometimes used for clothing and even light body armour. Remember to bring a really strong and durable backpack, ok?
- Pencils are yellow, because, in the 1890’s, the world’s best pencil graphite came from China. Here, the colour yellow is associated with royalty, so American pencil manufacturers started painting their pencils yellow, in order to indicate they contained high-quality Chinese graphite.
- In 2015, a Chinese woman who was missing for a decade and presumed dead was found living in an internet café, after playing games for 10 years. I know this isn’t necessarily a student fact, but come on: you kind of see the parallel here, right?
Also, some of the things you could say that happen only in China, not related to education, but that you should definitively know, are:
- The sun can rise as late as ten in the morning, because China, even though it’s a mammoth of a country, joined its five time zones;
- Also in China, it's illegal to use a wordplay or a pun in advertising or on television. Doesn’t that make you Tso sad?
- If you don’t believe in the butterfly effect, then this one is going to blow your mind: the air pollution in China increases or decreases the snowfall in California;
- Ending on a happier note: toilet paper was invented in the 1300s, in China. It was exclusively for the Emperor, so the term “sitting on the throne” makes so much sense, right now…
Universities, colleges and schools in China
- Xi'an Jiaotong-Liverpool University (16 PhDs)
- Jiangnan University (2 PhDs)
Interested in scholarships for China? Check out our scholarship search page.
How to Apply to a Master's in China
If you've decided to study a Master's degree at a university in China, you will have to gather the right documents to prove that you fit the university requirements. Provide complete personal information, previous qualifications, financial information, and a personal statement.
What documents do I need to provide to apply in China?
To apply to a university in China you will likely be asked to provide some of the following documents:
- birth certificate;
- recent photos;
- your passport or national identity card;
- one or more reference letters from past employers or teachers;
- copies of past diplomas or certificates, including your graduated Bachelor's degree;
- academic transcripts;
- letter of intent;
- Curriculum Vitae;
- Some form of proof that you can support your stay in the country during your studies.
Depending on the subject or specialization of your chosen Master's, you might also be asked to provide scores for additional tests like the GRE, GMAT or LSAT. Check if your programme requires any of these, or others.
The list of documents depends on the specific requirements of universities in China so you might be asked to include additional documents. It’s also likely you’ll have to provide official English translations of your documents, or translations in the local language.
Prove your English skills
Because you’ll study an international degree in English, you'll have to present a language certificate. Some popular options for international students are IELTS, TOEFL or C1 Advanced language certificates. You’ll have to meet a minimum language score set by the university, and your test scores shouldn’t be older than 1-2 years. If you don’t meet the minimum language requirements, you will have to improve your skills and scores by taking an English preparation course.
Application deadlines for China
The deadlines for applying to a Master's in China are usually during summer (June-July), or in winter (January-February). Keep in mind that some universities don’t have application deadlines, which means you can apply whenever you are ready.
To avoid delays or missed deadlines send your required documents with plenty of time in advance.