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Studying in China: Education in China

The Chinese education system offers Bachelor’s, Master’s and Doctorate degrees in a lot of fields and is characterized by its hierarchical structure. Higher education in China is provided by either private or public universities and the government authority responsible for education and language matters is the Ministry of Education of the People’s Republic of China (MOE).

Jan 26, 2024

The Chinese education system offers Bachelor’s, Master’s and Doctorate degrees in a lot of fields and is characterized by its hierarchical structure. Higher education in China is provided by either private or public universities and the government authority responsible for education and language matters is the Ministry of Education of the People’s Republic of China (MOE). 

The system has gone through major reforms and influences from the Western and Soviet Union education model, but during the 1980s was established towards a more improved, autonomous and Westernized model. The Chinese education system is the second most popular in the world and most popular study education destination in Asia for international students. 

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Bachelor Degrees in China

A Bachelor’s degree in China (学士学位 xueshi xuewei) lasts around four years for the majority of majors, except programs in medicine and surgery that last up to six years of education. Since China is aiming to internationalize its higher education system, a lot of the Bachelor degree programs are offered in English language as well.

In order to be eligible for undergraduate studies in China as an international student, you should have completed at least 12 years of formal education and prove sufficient evidence of English language command. Along with your Bachelor’s application, you will need to provide a personal statement letter, one or two recommendation letters and any other document depending on the program you are applying for. All the documents must be certified by the Chinese Ministry of Education.

The majority of universities and colleges in China follow a 4-scale or 5-scale grading system. However, keep in mind that prestigious universities like Peking and Zhejiang universities apply a different grading system for their students' evaluation. Overall, the grading system is divided into five categories based on performance:

  1. A: Excellent (85-100%)
  2. B: Good (75-84%)
  3. C: Average (64-74%)
  4. D: Pass (60-63%)
  5. F: Failure (0-59%)

What about Master’s studies?

Master’s studies (硕士学位 shuoshi xuewei) in the Chinese education system are divided into two categories: Taught or course-based and research-based. In order to be eligible for Master studies in China you should have completed your Bachelor studies. International students are able to study their Master’s in English, as long as they prove their English language proficiency with a language test before. 

The length of a Master’s degree in China is two years, with some exceptions in particular programs that can extend to three years. As also for the Bachelor’s and Doctorate degrees in the Chinese education system, the academic year starts in March and ends in October. However, semester dates may vary every year, depending on the date of the Chinese New Year. 

Doctorate Studies in the Chinese Education System 

Did you know that China has the most PhD graduates in the world? Grab the opportunity and be one of them! The length of Doctorate studies (博士boshi) in China is three to four years. In order to be eligible for Doctorate studies, you need to have completed your Master studies and give entrance examinations. The first two or three years of Doctorate studies in China are based on teaching, while the fourth year is usually dedicated to academic dissertation writing. The curriculum and entry requirements for Doctorate studies in China vary and is published every year by each university, depending on the study objective as well. 

Study in China - Overview

Thousands of international students choose China as their study abroad destination every year. Click here to learn why.

Student Visas

Learn more about the Chinese student visa process, and all the information you need to enter the country, depending on your citizen status. You will also be required to bring certain documents with you in China, like your medical records, which we cover as well.

Housing & Living Costs

No matter where you study abroad, it’s important to make a plan and create a budget in advance so that you’re prepared. Therefore, we’ve detailed average living and housing costs so that you can get a better idea of what you would be paying as a student in China, depending on the city of your choice.

Tuition Fees & Scholarships

Tuition fees in China may vary, depending on the level of education. Both international and European students are expected to pay tuition fees in China. No worries though, there are plenty of scholarship opportunities available from the Chinese government.

Language & Culture

China is known for its rich history, financial power and culture. Find out more about what the country offers in terms of language, culture, and many more!

Application Process

All countries have specific admissions requirements for students to gain acceptance into a university. Learn more about the ins and outs of admission to programs in China, and what you need to apply, depending on your citizenship.

Programs

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Keystone Team

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The Keystone Team is comprised of experienced educators and advisors dedicated to providing valuable resources and advice to students all over the world.