China is an attractive country for students coming from other countries due to its great culture and traditions. It is also one of the super fast-growing countries in terms of economy. China must be on your list of studying abroad countries. Here we present detailed information about studying in China for international students.

Reasons to study in China

China is the third-largest country in the world. It has been the fastest-growing country for the past 30 years. You will surely be benefited from studying in this super fast-growing country. The main benefits of studying in China are:

 Higher educational degrees from academic institutions in China are recognized all over the world. This proves that the education offered at Chinese universities has top-class quality.

 There is no single best study program in China. There are plenty of programs to choose from depending on your academic career. Courses are offered at each level of higher education, bachelors, masters and doctorate level.

 Chinese universities are valued and respected all over the globe. There are 25 universities in China ranked as the best universities in the world. China is trying hard to build more world-class universities and investing heavily in the higher education sector.

 You can also study in China in English. The academic institutions in China not only offer a study program in Chinese language but also English language for international students.

 Financial support is an essential factor when deciding to study abroad. You will be surprised to know that the Chinese government is offering a wide range of funding opportunities to attract more and more international students each year. There are around more than 40,000 scholarships offered.

 Studying abroad in China is a great way to strengthen your resume content and improve your career options. From learning a new foreign language to dealing with the people of another culture, these skills can build your professional life to another life. This helps you land the perfect dream job once you have graduated from a Chinese university.

Whether you choose an urban student life in Shanghai or Hong Kong, want to get close to history in Beijing, or prefer to check out a rural area, China has everything to offer an international student. Foreign student life in China is filled with opportunities.

Top Universities in China

China has more than 2500 universities. Among these 25 universities are ranked as the best in the world by QS world university ranking 2021. To help you choose the best, here we have mentioned the top 10 universities in China:


QS World Ranking

Tsinghua University


Peking University


Fudan University


Shanghai Jiao Tong University


Zhejiang University


University of Science and Technology of China


Nanjing University


Wuhan University


Tongji University


Harbin Institute of Technology


Other universities in China for international students are:

1. Sun Yat-sen University

2. Beijing Normal University

3. Xi’an Jiaotong University

4. Southern University of Science and Technology

5. Nankai University

6. Shanghai University

7. Tianjin University

8. Beijing Institute of Technology        

9. Huazhong University of Science and Technology

10. Xiamen University

11. University of Science and Technology Beijing

12. Beihang University (former BUAA)       

13. South China University of Technology        

14. Shandong University

15. Jilin University

China university admission requirements

To get admission to a Chinese university you would require to fill out the application form for the particular university. You will also need to submit some of the important documents along with the application form. The document requirements vary with the institution and course you choose. Some of the common document requirements are mentioned below:

§  Passport photo

§  National ID

§  Photocopy of a valid passport

§  Identification Document

§  Health certificate

§  Certification of no criminal record

§  Chinese or English language proficiency certificate

§  Minimum two letters of recommendation.

§  A passing grade in the entrance examination of the Chinese institution.

§  Certificate/diploma from last graduated school

§  Academic transcript from last graduated school

§  Letter of guarantee. It should be written by the parent or legal guardian of the student confirming that he or she takes the responsibility for the student to abide by the rules and regulations of China and the university.

§  Proof of financial ability to support your studies in China.

Intakes in China

Chinese universities normally contain two admission intakes every year,

§  March Intake – The application for March intake starts from October to January next year

§  September Intake – The application for September intake starts from February to August.

Steps to Study in March Intake in China

If your study destination is China, and you want to apply for March intake, we bring you the timeline you can follow to apply at Universities in China to study in March 2021. But if you want to start in March, here are the deadlines and timeline for the steps you need to follow.

Step 1: Start Now!

  • Most Chinese universities have a policy of first come first admission for March intake in China, and you would want to start your application process as early as possible. Please work according to the deadlines of the universities in China for the March intake.
  • Before that, make a list of universities that suits your academic goal. Do thorough research on the list of colleges in China for the March intake. Also, check the courses available in China for the March intake, and select the one that suits you the best for your academic and career goals.

Step 2: Take the Required Exams: September to October

  • Prepare for GMAT, GRE, SAT, TOEFL, and IELTS, two months before the test. Take the exams as per the admission requirements of the particular course in your chosen. If you are unable to take IELTS or TOEFL, you can take the Online IET test which is ready in less than 1 week.
  • You should be taking your exams latest by October, before applying for the institutes.
  • You should remember that it will take approximately 2 weeks for the declaration of test results, and an extra month should be kept, in case you want to retake the exam because of an unsatisfied result.


Step 3: Apply to the chosen Universities: October to November

  • Prepare your final university admission application. You must present yourself as a potential applicant through your application. It should also highlight your strengths.
  • Connect with the required persons for the recommendation letters. By now you should start drafting your motivation letter or SOP (Statement of Purpose). The collection of all these documents should start at least 30 days before the deadline for the application.
  • Most March intake universities in China will have their due dates fixed for December. Deadlines differ with the course and institute you choose. You should always keep checking the Universities deadlines for March 2021 on the university website
  • Apply with all the arranged documents before the due date.


Step 4: Acceptance Letters and Interviews: November to January

  • University will mail you the decision after you have applied for the courses. Don’t take much time in replying to them. Appear for the interviews if asked.
  • If you are offered a seat in your chosen university, take a quick decision of accepting it. Reply to them with your decision as early as possible. Do not wait for the deadlines of March intake colleges in China to reply.
  • You will also be asked to pay a non-refundable deposit to confirm your admission to the college or university in China.


Step 5: Apply for Visa / Finance: December to January

  • If you choose to travel to China for the March intake in this Pandemic situation: As soon as you get the admission letter, you should apply for a study visa. As visa application processing takes time, an applicant should always consider that before planning. If required, apply for a scholarship or education loan, as soon as you get the acceptance letter from the college/university.
  • If you choose to study the course online you don’t need to apply for a student Visa.


Step 6: Covid-19 testing report and Departure: January to February

  • You are almost ready to fly! Book airline tickets. Before leaving the home country, collect all the necessary paperwork.
  • If you are ready to go, then you should follow the new rules required for safety purposes.
  • As per China international students news, those travelling to the country are required to carry 2 COVID-19 Tests taken less than 48 hours before the flight. Moreover, if you choose to travel from a connecting flight, you will also need to carry a COVID-19 test from the country of the stopover. Further, you will also be required to quarantine for 14 days, which will entirely be self-finance.
  • Most of the semesters begin in early March, so it is suggested to reach China by February and look for accommodations on or off campus.


September Intake in China

The Fall Intake in China starts in September, it is considered the main intake by many. There is a large number, of course, available for the September Intake. If you are someone looking forward to studying in September Intake for China, here is the timeline one needs to follow:

Steps to Study in September Intake in China

Step 1: Start now

  • Start shortlisting 10-12 top universities in China that you will apply to in January. Visit the Chinese university website and know the application requirements, deadlines, Covid precautions etc.
  • By that time, be familiar with bank loan options and scholarships in China to support your studies if you are going to take classes offline.
  • You should also gain some knowledge about the different accommodation options available in China for international students. You can research on the internet.

Step 2 – Crack the exams: January to February

  • Start the preparations for required international tests like IELTS, GMAT, GRE, TOEFL etc depending upon the course and university.
  • If you are unable to take IELTS or TOEFL, you can take the Online IET test which is ready in less than 1 week.
  • Take the appropriate tests for admission purposes and also plan for buffer time if the situation demands you to retake the test.

Step 3 – Its application time: March to April

  • Check out the list of requirements for the chosen universities in China offering study abroad programs in China, and prepare for your application. Try to make such an application that portrays you as an applicant and presents your strengths and self-appraisal.
  • Contact the required persons for the required 2-3 reference letters. Get them as early as possible before your application due date arrives.
  • You should also start preparing a good SOP. Give a month to structure these documents appropriately.
  • Apply before the due date!

Step 4 – What next: April to May

  • Do not delay in replying to emails from the institution. If required also appear for the scheduled interviews by the university.
  • Once you receive your admission offer letter, make your decision without delay.
  • Reply to the universities about your decision before the due dates.
  • You also have to deposit the amount of the tuition fee to confirm your admission.

Step 5 – Visa and money matters: June to July

  • There is no surety of what will be the pandemic situation in China then. Depending on the situation you have to decide whether you choose to study online in your home country or offline by travelling to China.
  • If you choose to study offline, you will have to obtain a student visa for China.
  • If required, search for and begin applying for external scholarships.
  • Apply for a student loan if you are unable to arrange funds, as soon as you get your acceptance letter.
  • Assemble all the documents and apply as required for the visa, scholarship or loan.
  • Visa processing takes time. So, apply for it on time.


Step 6 – Get ready to fly: August – September

  • If you choose to attend classes in china, book airline tickets. Collect all the documents you will require in China.
  • As per the current situation, entry into China will not be easy. You may be required to take a few COVID-19 Tests and maybe you have to be in quarantine which will entirely be self-funded. Yet there is no clarity of what position will be then.


Cost of Studying in China

The cost of studying abroad in China is not much more expensive than in the USA, UK etc. In fact, public universities in China are more affordable than Private universities. However, the tuition fee differs with the institution and course you choose to study. Here we have mentioned the average figures:

Tuition fees in public universities in China

The average tuition fees in public universities can be around 16215RMB (2,500$) to 64863RMB (10,000$) per academic year.

Tuition fees in private universities in China

Generally, Private universities charge higher tuition. While most courses cost under 194589RMB (30,000$) per year, some Management courses it can cost around 259452RMB (40,000$) per year.

Average living costs in Chinese cities

§  Beijing is one of the most costly cities and you will need between 6486RMB (1,000$) and 7783RMB (1,200$) per month to cover your expenses.

§  Shenzhen and Shanghai are the second most costly cities, where you can expect to spend between 5513RMB (850$) and 7783RMB (1,200$) per month.

§  In all the other Chinese cities, it can cost you around 3891RMB (600$) – 486RMB (1,000$) per month including accommodation.

Study in China scholarship

Studying abroad is more expensive than studying in our home country. So if you find difficulty in arranging the funds for studying in China, you can apply for scholarships. If you are able to gain fully-funded scholarships, you can make your way to study in China for free. The government and universities in China offer plenty of scholarships to international students. Here we have made a small list of scholarships you can take benefit of :

Chinese Government-funded scholarships

 China Scholarship Council – CSC Scholarships 2021

 Jiangsu Government Scholarship

 Hubei Provincial Scholarships

 Beijing Government Scholarship

 Guanxi Government Scholarship for ASEAN Students

Non-government funded scholarships

 Confucius Institute Scholarship

 British Council of China Scholarship

University scholarships in China

§  Schwarzman Scholars Program

§  Biomedical Sciences Scholarships

§  Zhengzhou University President Scholarships

Student Visa for China 

To enter China, international students would require a Student visa. The Study Visa for China is of 2 types, X1 and X2. International Students who want to study at a Chinese university for:

 For more than 6 months will need an X1 visa.

 Less than 6 months will need an X2 visa.

You will need to apply for the study visa with some of the basic and important documents. These documents are collected for verification purposes. Based on your country of origin you will require different documents. Some of the common documents are:

 A valid passport and a photocopy of the name page.

 One Visa Application Form V.2013 per person

 One recent passport-type photograph

 JW201 or JW202 given by the State Education Ministry of China

 Letter of admission from the receiving school

 Visa Service Request Form

 Payment for visa processing, service and shipping

 Additional requirements based on jurisdiction

 Additional requirement for Chinese descendants

It is recommended to apply for the visa around 1 month before your planned entry date in China. However, the visa processing time in China is fast, probably a week.

Residence permit in China

Student visas in China are valid only for 30 days, but you can stay in the country for the entire duration of your visa. However, Within 30 days, you should apply for a residence permit. It is a replacement for your study visa. It should be applied at a local Public Security Bureau (PSB) Exit and Entry Administration office. The residence permit will be granted for the entire duration you were permitted with the visa.

Working on a Chinese student visa

Yes, international students can do part-time jobs with a student visa during their studies in China. They are also allowed to engage in paid internships on campus. The only condition to do the job is to obtain permission both from your host university and the Chinese immigration authorities. Follow the 2 steps as mentioned below:

§  You should get a consent letter from your university or hiring company (for internships)

§  Then you will need to go to the police station to mark your visa for ‘part-time work’.

Cost Of Study in China

Is the cost of living in China too high?
Although prices in China are rising, the cost of living here is still favourable compared with most developed countries. You will be amazed by how comfortably you can live and how strong your purchasing power is. Compared to developed countries, the cost of living and studying in China is relatively low. Accommodation in Beijing is roughly RMB 2000-3000 yuan per month. An average meal costs around 30-50 yuan. The subway has a flat rate of 2 yuan and buses within the city are even cheaper. Smaller cities and those in China’s central and western regions are particularly inexpensive.

Cost of Living

In Beijing, China’s most expensive city, you can live fairly comfortably off of US$15 a day. Renting an apartment costs around US$250-350 a month and a meal at your local noodle joint won’t set you back more than a couple of dollars.

If you’re on a tight budget, you’ll find that the salary from a part-time teaching job can go a long way in China. Also, unless you have your heart set on living in Beijing or Shanghai, don’t overlook China’s lesser-known cities where you may only have to pay US$150 a month for a room on campus.

Currency & Money

Currency information

1 Renminbi Yuan (CNY; symbol ¥) = 10 jiao/mao or 100 fen. Notes are in denominations of ¥100, 50, 20, 10, 5, 1, 5 jiao and 1 jiao. Coins are in denominations of ¥1, 5 jiao and 1 jiao. Counterfeit ¥50 and ¥100 notes are commonplace. The Yuan is often referred to as the ‘guai’ in street slang.

Credit cards

American Express, Diners Club, MasterCard and Visa are widely accepted in major provincial cities in designated establishments. Credit cards are often unlikely to be accepted away from the major cities.


ATMs can generally be found in airports, hotels, shopping centres and banks, as well as in many major cities and towns.

Traveller’s cheques

To avoid additional exchange rate charges, travellers are advised to take traveller’s cheques in US Dollars.

Banking hours

Mon-Fri 0900-1600/1700. Some banks close for lunch from 1200-1300. Select branches in major cities offer extended hours in the evenings and on weekends.

Currency restriction

Imports and exports of the local currency are limited to ¥20,000. The import and export of foreign currency are unlimited, but amounts exceeding the equivalent of US$5,000 must be declared.

Currency exchange

It is possible to exchange CNY outside China, albeit mainly in Southeast Asia and Hong kong. Foreign banknotes and traveller’s cheques can be exchanged at branches of The Bank of China. In hotels for tourists, imported luxury items such as spirits may be bought with Western currency. Scottish and Northern Irish banknotes cannot be exchanged.

China duty-free

The following items may be imported into China without incurring customs duty:

§  400 cigarettes and 100 cigars and 500g of tobacco.

§  1.5L of alcoholic beverages with 12% or more alcoholic content.

§  Personal articles up to a value of ¥5,000 for Chinese residents.

§  Personal articles will be left in China up to a value of ¥2,000 for non-residents.

Banned imports

Arms and ammunition, imitation arms, narcotics, fruit, animals and animal products, and any publication (print, audio or video) directed against the public order and the morality of China.

Customs officials may seize audio and videotapes, books, records and CDs to check for pornographic, political or religious material. You must complete baggage declaration forms upon arrival noting all valuables (such as cameras, watches and jewellery); this may be checked on departure. You should keep receipts for items such as jewellery, jade, handicrafts, paintings, calligraphy or other similar items in order to obtain an export certificate from the authorities on leaving. Without this documentation, you cannot take such items out of the country.

Banned exports

All articles are banned from import as well as publications or media containing state secrets, valuable cultural artefacts, and endangered/rare animals and plants (and their seeds).

Student Visa in China

After you are accepted at a Chinese university, there is one more step you need to take to enter China. You have to apply for a student visa in China to get entry permission. For helping you with this, here we have presented complete information from start to end.

Here are the Highlights of the content

1.Types of student visa for Chin

2.How to get a Chinese student visa

3.Where to apply for a student visa in China?

4.When should I apply for the Chinese student visa?

5.Requirements for the visa application in China

6.China Visa Processing Time

7.What to do if my student visa application for China gets rejection?

8.Is it legal to work on a student visa in China?

9.Residence permit in China

Types of Student Visas for China

There are 2 types of student visas for China. It is subdivided into X1 and X2.

  X1 is issued to those international students who plan to study in China for more than 6 months. It is usually issued for multiple entries. This visa is valid for a maximum of 5 years. Holders of X1 visas must register at the local public security bureau within 30 days of arrival in China. Here they will be issued China Residence Permit to replace the X1 visa.

  X2 is issued to those international students who plan to study in China only for less than 6 months. It is usually issued for one entry with a validity of up to 6 months.

How to get a Chinese student visa

The process of obtaining a student visa for China is easy if you follow the right steps. Here is the process you need to complete:

1.Firstly, you need to secure admission to a Chinese university.

2.You have to collect your admission letter. Make sure you have also received JW201 and JW202

3.Collect all the documents required for a China visa.

4.Submit the application with complete information and paperwork.

5.The visa processing takes time. You have to wait for the decision.

6.If your application is approved you will get a student visa for getting entry permission in China.

7. Within 30 days of arrival in China, you will have to visit a local public security bureau(PSB) Exit and Entry Administration office for submitting the application for the Chinese residence permit

Where to apply for a student visa in China?

 International Students can apply through the Chinese VISA Application Service Centre(CVASC). If there is no CVASC in your country, you can also choose to apply to the nearest Chinese consulate or embassy. If you apply through CVASC, you may be required to make an online appointment.

 Submit the application in hand or you can take the help of a travel agency or a visa agency. They will act on your behalf if you can’t come personally. Online applications are not accepted, thus will be refused by most Chinese embassies.

When should I apply for the Chinese student visa?

Application for a student visa to China should be done one month in advance. In the express service, the application is processed in 3 days, and in the regular service, 4 days are required. Postal applications need 10 working days for processing only if all the documentation is in good order.

Requirements for the visa application in China

Requirements for the documents for getting a student visa for China will depend on your country of origin. To obtain approval for the student visa you must be admitted to any of the universities in China. When you submit your application form, you must also submit some supporting documents. Here are the Chinese study visa requirements for international students.

§  Original passport which must be valid for at least 6 months after your expected date of departure from China

§  Completed application form

§  One passport-type photograph

§  Original and a copy of enrollment letter from the university

§  Proof of paid visa application fee

§  Evidence of accommodation arrangements

§  A valid physical examination record

China Visa Processing Time

The regular processing time for a student visa application is 4 working days. If you want your visa application to be processed first, you can go through the express service and rush service.

 Express Service: It takes 2 to 3 working days for visa application processing. It will be charged an extra $20

 Rush Service: It takes 1 working day for visa application processing. It will be charged an extra $ 30.

What to do if my student visa application for China gets rejection?

Sometimes your Chinese student visa application may not be approved. There may be many reasons for the refusal. Some of the common reasons are:

 Mistakes in the China visa application form

 Missing documents

 The applicant has a criminal record

 The applicant has some kind of contagious disease

If permitted, you can appeal the rejection and submit more details to update your application. Consular officers have the right to decide whether to review the application based on particular cases. If you get the chance, you can reapply for a China visa.

Is it legal to work on a student visa in China?

Yes, international students can take part-time jobs with a student visa while studying in China. But there is a condition that They have to engage in paid internships only on campus. You have to obtain permission from both your university and the Chinese immigration authorities. You need to follow the 2 steps mentioned below:

1.You should get a consent letter from your university or hiring company (for internships)

2.You will need to visit the police station to get a mark for your visa which will give you the right to work part-time work.

Residence permit in China

Student visas in China are valid only for 30 days, but you can stay in the country for the entire duration of your visa. However, Within 30 days, you should apply for a residence permit. It is a replacement for your study visa. It should be applied at a local Public Security Bureau (PSB) Exit and Entry Administration office. The residence permit will be granted for the entire duration you were permitted with the visa.