Study abroad semester in China

Welcome to China!

With one-fifth of world’s population, China is for sure an important country. It existed for more than 4000 years, making it one of the oldest nations in the world. In ancient times, China was a really prosperous and influential country. Nowadays, it is gaining back its international recognition, and it is projected to surpass the largest country by economical means, the United States, in a few years.

If you consider the average temperature between the north and the south, China is the world’s winner with an astonishing 48 °C of difference. It also has one of the most diverse fauna and flora of any other country.

From the birthplace of Taoism and Confucianism, China is evolving to be one of the most technologically advanced societies in the world. During the 20th century it focused on mass industrial and agricultural production, while in the 21st century it is gaining traction in the cutting-edge technologies such as AI, Microprocessors and Blockchain. Economic growth is strong and sustained since many years, and for sure the future looks promising.

What are the best universities in China for semester students?

Are you still undecided whether or not China might be an appealing destination for you? On wearefreemovers you can find a selection of 12 academic institutions offering you the possibility of spending a semester or a full academic year in China. Let’s check some statistics about them.

Here you can see the positions of the Chinese institutions among the world’s best universities rankings.

NAMEQSTHEARWUCWURCWTSEduniversal palmesU.S. News & World Report's Best Global Universities RankingsWebometrics
Peking University - School of Law232349628551234
University of Hong Kong2239151-200166116583367
Tsinghua University152029715528160
Hong Kong University of Science and Technology (Undergraduate level)2756301-4002353535109-
Zhejiang University53945811734135320
City University of Hong Kong48126201-3002782774162-
Xi'an Jiaotong-Liverpool University801-1000601–800101-1501945-3301531
Tongji University256401–500201-300294584251569
East China Normal University (Master level)501-510351–400401-500397285-414321
East China Normal University (Undergraduate level)501-510351–400401-500397285-414321
Lingnan University College Hong Kong (Undergraduate level)571-580----3--
ESSCA School of Management - Shanghai campus--------
Tianjin University387401–500151-20024843-355171

Chinese education has boomed in the last years. I have been following rankings for quite a few years, and Chinese universities always seemed to gain positions over time. Now we find some of them in an excellent tier. They can, on paper, compete among the world’s best academic institutions. The only ones that you can find on wearefreemovers that are still behind are: Xi’an Jiaotong-Liverpool University, ESSCA School of Management – Shanghai campus and Lingnan University College Hong Kong. However, they have valid reasons to explain that. The first institution is a joint venture between Xi’an Jiaotong University and Liverpool University. Both of them have awesome international recognition, while the numbers that you see here refer to the joint venture. It is a union of two strong universities, and it is strange to see it lower-ranked. Then, ESSCA School of Management – Shanghai campus is an overseas division of a French business school, that is recognized in the business field, but too small for general international rankings to be accounted for (you can find more information on subject-specific rankings on the Country Guides). The last one, Lignan University College Hong Kong, seems to be too small to be taken into consideration by rankers.

Costs and fees

China is a fairly cheap country. Monthly costs of living for a single person are close to 550€. Keep in mind that, as a student, you could have access to various discounts which can include food, travel, and accommodation expenses.

When it comes to university’s fees, China is medium expensive, with a median 4300€/semester for free mover students.

Which Chinese cities are available to free movers?

Currently there are many cities that accept free movers in China. Have you ever dreamt of studying in Beijing or any other city in China? Here you can find institutions divided by city: