China holds the place as one of the most favorite destinations for international students for higher education. It holds the distinction of having many of its universities as members of the elite educational and research institutions across the world.
Broadly, the country offers everything a student considers for education abroad: infrastructure, research-intensive environment, diversity in student population, highly qualified teachers, and cost-effective lifestyle.
Despite all that there is mentioned above, you still have many things to consider before you decide to move to China. You need to research thoroughly about China and its various aspects which will ultimately have a bearing on your experience.
With the aim of simplifying the whole research process of yours, I have come up with 5 must-know things about China and its higher education which will be of great utility to you. These will act as your guidelines on the basis of which you can make a proper roadmap towards your future higher education in China.
- Best Places To Study
The Institution and its location count a great deal, and where the institution is super-class, we are usually amenable to accepting any sort of location, remote or mainstream. Remember there are many, many options to choose from here in China, and you must decide what kind of institution you want and whether location matters to you a great deal.
The most popular cities here where higher education operates at its best are Shanghai, Hong Kong, Chengdu, Kunming, Beijing, and Tianjin. Many internationally renowned universities are located in the capital city itself such as Peking University and Tsinghua University.
- The Best Universities In The World.
A lot of money goes into the development of Chinese universities, and the outcomes are reflected in the form of world rankings which many of the country’s universities have scaled, particularly Tsinghua University and Peking University. Tsinghua University (ranked 29th in the world), has been recognized as the best university in China for 2019, according to the CEOWORLD magazine University Ranking, while Peking University (ranked 40th in the world) and Fudan University (ranked 89th in the world) placed second and third, respectively.
- Keep Your Eyes On the C9 League.
If you make it into any of the universities in the C9 League, you will have a secured career ahead. C9 is an official consortium of 9 prestigious educational institutions in mainland China. It is the result of Project 985 which was floated by the State for coming up with world-class institutions.
The universities part of the C9League are as follows:
1) Tsinghua University (also known as THU or Qinghua) in Beijing.
2) Peking University (also known as PKU or Beida) in Beijing.
3) The Harbin Institute of Technology – three campuses, the Harbin campus in Heilongjiang Province, the Weihai campus in Shandong Province, and the Shenzhen campus in Guangdong Province.
4) Shanghai Jiao Tong University (also known as SJTU) in Shanghai.
5) University of Science and Technology of China (also known as USTC) in Hefei, Anhui province.
6) Xi’an Jiaotong University (also known as XJTU) in Xi’an, Shaanxi province.
7) Nanjing University (also known as NJU, NU or Nanking University) in Nanjing (Nanking and Nankin), the capital of Jiangsu province.
8) Fudan University – Shanghai.
9) Zhejiang University (also known as ZJU, Zhèdà or Che Kiang University) in Hangzhou, Zhejiang province.
In addition to Tsinghua University (ranked 29th) and Peking University (ranked 40th), and Fudan University (ranked 89th), six other C9 League universities in mainland China placed in the “Top 500 Global Universities for 2019“: University of Science and Technology of China (No. 116), Shanghai Jiao Tong University (No. 123), Zhejiang University (No. 137), Nanjing University (No. 191), Harbin Institute of Technology (No. 274), and Xi’an Jiaotong University (No. 355).
Money is a great factor, irrespective of where you come from. If you are coming from a developing country and have limited financial resources, this factor will attain a very high relevance in your decision-making.
China is one of those few countries which offer world-class higher education facilities and affordability. Here, higher education is not very expensive and can be managed with a limited budget.
The economy is still developing, and hence the cost of living is usually doable. However, if you are in Hong Kong, you might find accommodation an issue considering the property rates have skyrocketed recently and there is increased development of jam-packed, sky-touching apartment buildings which are very tight on space and low in comfort.
You can save a lot of money if you manage to secure a good, well-paying scholarship. The Chinese government operates many active scholarship programmes. Many universities designated by the Ministry of Education offer academic programmes for the scholarship holders at various levels.
- Language Barriers
Even though China enjoys significant migration of international students into its territory, it has many of its universities run its academic programmes in Mandarin. The Chinese population does speak English, at least more than its neighbours, Japan and South Korea which are also famous destinations for international students. However, the numbers are significantly less in comparison to the population.
It is highly advised that you check on the university’s official website whether the programme in which you want an admission is administered in English. If not, then you have two options: drop the option or learn Mandarin.
- More Collective, Disciplined and Mindful
Asian culture is predominantly inhabited by societies which value collectivism in contrast to individualism prevalent in the West.
A collectivist society values group over individuals, as a result of which its members are disciplined, family-oriented, and observant of propriety. Western society usually drives on the wave of individualism, as a result of which its members are protective of their self, more inclined towards the individual right than group right, and flexible.
If you come from such western society or a society bearing similar features, you might suffer culture shock. It might take some time for you to adjust to the demands of the new environment. It is, therefore, recommended that you read extensively about Chinese culture and how people are expected to behave here.
- Be prepared for competition
Competition is everywhere, and that is a fact which is undeniable. However, China is a highly competitive country, and its competitiveness is quite gruelling. The education system is very rigorous, even for the nerdiest kid in your class. So, when you come to China, be prepared to work really hard to keep yourself floated here.
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