Study in Chinaby Robyn Tellefsen
Did you know that China is one of the four oldest civilizations in the world- and that it has a written history of 4,000 years? How about all the rich cultural relics and historical sites it boasts? Add to that The Great Wall of China, The Grand Canal, and the Karez irrigation system -- three great ancient engineering projects built well over 2,000 years ago -- and you have an educational mecca from which much can be learned.
Considering the advancements in the educational systems of China, now would be the ideal time to take advantage of the opportunity to study in China. Every year, more and more foreign students are choosing to study in China. Many overseas students from countries throughout the world come to study on the mainland, making China one of the largest study abroad destinations in the world.. The global credit crunch and the high rate of student unemployment has made China one of the most popular alternative for students and graduates alike.
If studying in China is something which you are seriously considering, you will need to apply for and ultimately acquire a visa. If you are a citizen from Japan, Singapore, or and Brunei a visa is not needed. A Chinese visa allows entry into nearly all of the country, although some restricted areas still require an additional permit. Visas are also required if a students plans to travel to Tibet. Tibet is an area of China that the authorities can suddenly bar foreigners from entering, so caution should be taken when considering travel there.
Many travel agencies offer competitive prices to most destinations. The cheapest flights to China are with airlines requiring a stopover at the home airport, such as with Air France to Beijing via Paris or Malaysian Airlines to Beijing via Kuala Lumpur. The most expensive time to travel is between June and September, so it is wise to search for airline tickets early and often.
Due to China's fast development and its size and population number, linguist experts are predicating the number of people learning English as a second language to decline. English is still a dominant language in China, but without being fluent in Chinese, the job market will prove more difficult as time goes on. By learning Chinese, many doors will be open to foreign students that might otherwise remain closed
Traveling to China to study abroad can be one of the most exciting adventures of a student's lifetime. As China continues to welcome foreign students, it will continue to grow as a fascinating attraction for a truly unique study opportunity.
Frequently Asked Questions
What are the Visa application requirements?
You must apply for a visa to study in China at the Chinese embassy or consulate in your home country. You'll need a completed visa application form, a foreign student visa application form, your admission notice from the Chinese school you'll be attending, a completed physical examination form, and a valid passport. Students planning to stay less than six months will apply for an F visa; those staying for more than six months will apply for an X visa.
Are scholarships available?
Full and partial tuition Chinese government scholarships are available to international students through the country's Ministry of Education. HSK scholarships are also available to those who have achieved excellent HSK scores. Scholarship students must undergo annual reviews in order to renew their award.
Can I stay in the country after I have finished studying?
Visa extension and renewal is never guaranteed, but you may be able to apply for a one-month tourist visa (L visa) before your study visa expires. Check with your host institution to determine that particular province's visa conversion policies. If you are unable to extend your visa, you must leave China before your visa expires.
Can I work while I am studying?
The only way to work part time while studying is if your school gives you written permission. Otherwise, it is illegal to work in China without a work visa (Z visa).
Do I have to speak the country's native language to study there?
If you do not speak Chinese, you will need to take one to two years of Chinese language courses in China or elsewhere before you begin your planned course of study. Once you successfully complete the standardized Chinese Proficiency Test (HSK), which is offered in China and in foreign countries every year, you will receive a certificate of Chinese language proficiency at one of various levels. University courses in China are taught in Chinese, so you must have a grasp of the language in order to pursue higher education in the country.
What are the average tuition and living expenses?
Undergraduate liberal arts students typically pay between $1,500 and $3,000 per year for tuition. Science, engineering, and agronomy students may pay up to 30 percent more; medicine, physical education, and fine arts students may pay up to 50 percent more. Accommodations usually cost between $500 and $1,500 per year. You'll also need about $250-$600 per month for living expenses such as food, transportation, and entertainment.
What are the housing options available?
International students are usually accommodated in university residence halls. If the dorms are full, the university may contract with a local hotel to provide student housing. Off-campus apartments and homestays may be available as well.
What exams will I need to take to get into schools in this country?
Aside from the HSK, which is not required for admission but for commencement of major studies, there are no admission exams for schools in China. You will, however, need to provide documentation of previous study (e.g., a high school diploma for undergraduate studies).
What is the application procedure to study in this country?
If you wish to study in China, you may apply for self-financed study or a Chinese government scholarship program. Download the China Scholarship Council application for self-financed study in China here or the application for a Chinese government scholarship program here. You may list three institutions of higher education you'd like to attend; admissions decisions will be made by the individual institutions.