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Universities in China and study in China - International Student Country Guide

Find universities in China and study in China, our guide for international students to study abroad. China has hundreds of universities and its government is investing heavily in a higher education system that already has a strong international reputation. For undergraduates, the country has huge amounts to offer – a fascinating insight into a different culture and a real opportunity to excel academically.Study a degree in China
Chinese universities excel in areas including as engineering, science, medicine and economics, and this is probably the reason why more than 320,000 international students chose to study a degree in China in 2012.

How can you study a degree in China?

China has 465 higher education institutions that are qualified to accept international students, and a large number if undergraduate courses are taught in English – so students do not need to know Mandarin to study in China.
The majority of developed countries across the world have signed an agreement with the Chinese government that means undergraduate degrees from Chinese universities are recognised and transferable.
Chinese undergraduate degrees usually last four years, but degrees such as medicine and dentistry will take five. For some courses students may need to take China’s college entrance examination.

The official application deadline for most courses and universities is late July.

Tuition fees

Tuition fees in China generally cost between USD$2,000-4,000 a year, depending on the course and major. Many scholarships are available to international students coming to China, particularly as the government looks to increase China's educational reputation.

Immigration and visas

Foreign students intending to study a degree in China that lasts longer than 6 months (as will be the case for most planning to study for undergraduate degrees) need to apply for a student visa (X-visa). Applicants will need the following:

  • A passport valid for at least six months after arriving in China, with at least one blank visa page
  • A health certificate legalised by the Chinese Embassy
  • A completed Visa Application Form (Q1) with a recent passport sized photograph attached
  • A Letter of Admission, Foreign Student Visa Application Form (JW202) issued by the relevant Chinese government unit
  • Those from the US may need to provide the original and a copy of their Green Card or other documents

Accommodation and living costs

The cost of accommodation in China varies depending on where you decide to study – whether you are in the centre of a city, for example. There are two main types of accommodation for students:

  • University accommodation – on campus dorms
  • Private accommodation – house and flat rentals
It is most common for international students to live in residential halls or dorms, surrounded by other students of their own age, many of whom may also be from overseas. You may request a roommate, or live in a single room if you wish.
If you want to live off campus whilst studying in China you will often need permission from your university.
Accommodation costs are higher in bigger cities like Beijing. As a guide, costs tend to vary between £90 and £200 a month, but you should expect living costs to be much lower than those in western countries.

For Parents

How safe is China?
Travelling abroad to study would be daunting for anyone – so it’s lucky for those that choose to study in China that the country has such a diverse student community. In terms of living, on campus accommodation in dorms means a high level of security and peace of mind.
China in general has a low crime rate, with violent crime being rare, and the Chinese have a reputation for being largely honest people.
Students should always take care to protect their own personal safety in order to avoid becoming victims of crime. They can do this by:

  • Avoiding carrying around large amounts of money
  • Staying in groups, especially at night, and never walking alone
  • Not making valuables obvious
  • Always having a route home planned and never getting into unlicensed taxis
  • Being wary of strangers
  • Being careful of traffic
Staying in touch

Staying in touch when your child is studying on the other side of the world might seem daunting – but there are ways you can talk regularly that don’t have to involve long distance phone calls and a nasty bill at the end of the month. Here are a few tips:

  • Blogging – maybe encourage your child to keep a blog of their adventures overseas, so that other families members (such as grandparents) can keep up to date
  • Local sim cards – it is also a good idea for your child to buy a phone with a local pay as you go sim card when they arrive so that they can text and call home without running up a bill

What to do next?

If you really want to learn outside your home country, but you’re not positive about where, take a look at our country guide. Also, if you would like more information on studying in China, please fill in our Free Application Service and we'll get in touch with you promptly.