Nanjing, China

Intensive Chinese Language + Culture

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Information for term Intensive Chinese Language + Culture

Application deadline, and cost information.

Application Deadline

May 1, 2020

Program Deadlines and Pricing Info

  • Deadline: May 1, 2020
  • Dates: Sep 4 – Dec 19, 2020 (15 weeks)
  • Credit: 15 - 18 semester hours / 22.5 - 27 quarter hours
  • Eligibility: 2.5 Overall GPA

Application Deadline

May 1, 2020

Program Deadlines and Pricing Info

  • Deadline: May 1, 2020
  • Dates: Sep 4, 2020 – Jun 4, 2021 (39 weeks)
  • Credit: 15 - 18 semester hours / 22.5 - 27 quarter hours
  • Eligibility: 2.5 Overall GPA


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Take your Chinese skills to the next level in a thriving metropolis that’s both the former capital of the Ming Dynasty and current home to many Fortune 500 companies. Dive into university life with a combination of language and content courses taught in Chinese and English at CIEE Nanjing and our partner school, Nanjing University. Faculty at Nanjing University specialize in teaching Chinese language and content courses to international students. Students agree to speak only Mandarin to encourage language and cultural acquisition. All courses are complemented with CIEE co-curricular activities and excursions beyond the city to enhance classroom learning and provide intercultural understanding.

Unique Experiences

  • Live with a Chinese roommate

    or a host family to fully experience Chinese daily life, Nanjing style.

  • Explore southwest or northwest China

    and see how the people, geography, food and customs change from eastern China.

  • See temples and architecture

    from the Ming Dynasty and the Republican Era and learn how these periods influenced the China you see today.

  • colleges and universities

  • year-old city wall, the longest in the world

  • college students


Location & Culture

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Safe, evergreen, livable, economic power, cultural center, home of 50-plus universities – what more could a student want? Just over an hour from Shanghai by high-speed train, Nanjing prides itself on maintaining traditional elements like classical temples and a 600-year-old Ming city wall, while it provides a base for hundreds of multinational corporations and many Fortune 500 companies. Nanjing was Imperial China’s seat of power for six dynasties, and is one of the Four Great Ancient Capitals of China. With a higher student to population ratio than any other Chinese city, you can’t beat its student-friendly environment.

The Culture


  • Take a field trip to see the Presidential Palace - where China’s modern democracy was born.
  • Walk atop the city’s 600-year-old wall and take a boat out on the beautiful Xuanwu Lake.
  • Learn outside the box by singing karaoke with Chinese roommates, participating in dragon boat races, or dining with Chinese families.
  • Learn calligraphy, Tai Chi, and traditional Chinese painting.
  • See the dramatic differences between western and eastern china with an unforgettable excursion:
    • Fall: Northwest. The Silk Road was an ancient highway for merchandise, religion, culture, and art. Travel from the start of its northern route in Xi’an, an ancient capital of China, visit the world famous Terracotta Warriors and try out the northwestern cuisine. Trek on camels in the sand dunes of Dunhuang in Gansu province, a fertile and magnificent oasis where a trove of Buddhist relics wait for you to explore.
    • Spring: Southwest. Head to Sichuan, Guangxi, or another province. In Sichuan, hike on the ever-green Mt. Qingcheng, the birthplace of Chinese Taoism, and learn about giant pandas’ habitat and Sichuanese teahouse culture. In Guangxi, trek through the lofty Dragon’s Backbone Rice Terraces, stay with the Zhuang villagers to learn about their ethnic minority culture, or venture off on bamboo rafts along the picturesque Li River.


  • Peer Language Tutor program. To ensure progress in linguistic and cultural fluency, each student is paired with a Nanjing University student for one-on-one Chinese language tutorials for three hours a week to practice pronunciation, get help with homework, and strike up conversations in Mandarin.  
  • Target language meals. To encourage students to use Chinese in daily life, CIEE Nanjing provides language meal stipends for students to share meals with Chinese roommates and friends.
  • Volunteering. We’ll help you connect with Chinese people and give back to a migrant school, home for the elderly, bilingual magazines, Chinese NGOs, and more.

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Daily Life

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    Homestays: Living with a host family option is ideal for students who want to establish relationships with Chinese people and make rapid language progress. Most families live within a 40-minute commute of campus by public transportation.

    Residence Halls: Students live in Nanjing University’s international dorm Zeng Xianzi, in double rooms with private bathrooms. Roommates are Chinese students, majoring in Teaching Chinese to Speakers of Other Languages, or other social science and science departments at Nanjing University. The 12-story building houses CIEE classrooms, study room, student lounge, administrative and faculty offices. Campus also has a three-story student cafeteria, library, laundry facilities, tracks, basketball and soccer fields, swimming pool and fitness facilities within a short walking distance.


    The campus cafeteria is a three-floor building with a variety of choices from dumplings to all kinds of stir-fried vegetables, meats, and hot stews at a discounted student price. Around campus there are many eateries, small restaurants and bakeries including northwestern noodles, local Nanjing cuisines, fried rice, soup dumplings and hot pot all at a decent price. You can also enjoy other Asian cuisine and western food like Korean, Indian, Japanese cuisines, burgers and sandwiches within walking distance. 

    Dormitory students are responsible for their own meals.  Students who stay with local host families are provided with breakfast and dinner on week days and three meals a day on most weekends.

Nanjing, China

Where You'll Study

  • A


    At Nanjing University on the Gulou campus downtown.

  • B


    One of the most prestigious universities in China

  • C

    Getting Around

    Around Students usually take subways and buses to get around. Taxis are usually less than 2 dollars in downtown Nanjing.

What People are Saying

  • CIEE Nanjing has altered my life. My time in Nanjing has been invaluable since I have improved my language skills beyond expectation in so little time

    Sophie Schoultz, Georgetown University, spring 2017
  • Nanjing is the perfect mix of Beijing’s iconic culture and Shanghai’s metropolitan feel. An idyllic college town that offers intensive language courses, a supportive staff and a close community with Chinese roommates. This city soon became my home away from home. 

    Azuraye Wycoff, University of Colorado, 2013-14
  • This program really allowed me to not only improve my Chinese competency, but to also dig a deeper passion for the language and culture. 

    Rob Rodriguez, University of Tulsa, spring 2017
  • I love Nanjing in part for the city's climate and atmosphere. The CIEE Nanjing Center is perfectly situated at the heart of Nanjing -- walking distance from beautiful places. After class, I can take a relaxing run around a scenic lake and then in the evening walk to all kinds of restaurants and shopping areas. 

    John Davis, Georgetown University, fall 2012

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Program Details

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What you need to know

The program details

This program focuses on developing second through fourth-year Mandarin language skills as students explore contemporary Chinese society and culture. Before the start of the program, one college-level Chinese area studies course is recommended. Language placement is determined by an onsite placement test, and students with advanced language skills and academic year students who complete the advanced-level language course in the fall semester may take language and content courses at Nanjing University alongside other foreign and Chinese students.

Nanjing University was founded in 1902 and is known for its strong liberal arts and social sciences programs and its connection with more than 200 universities and research institutes in 70 countries. Nanjing University hosts more than 43,000 undergraduate and graduate students on three campuses.

CIEE Nanjing is on the original, beautiful Gulou campus, in a neighborhood with restaurants and shops from Asia and the west. The city’s two main business and shopping districts are within walking distance. CIEE staff teach the Intercultural Communication and Leadership course.


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    Students attend required language classes and area studies courses that are open to CIEE students only. Students with advanced high or superior level Chinese language skills may take language and content courses at Nanjing University along with other foreign students and Chinese students.


    Language courses: Grades are based on participation, homework assignments, quizzes, written exams, language commitment, field trip reports, mid-term and final exams. Area studies courses: Grades are based on presentations, short papers, homework assignments, exams, and class participation.


    Students attend morning language classes Monday through Thursday for four hours a day. Classes are small, usually ranging from 4-10 students, so students are expected to actively participate and contribute. Students also meet with Chinese peer tutors for individual tutoring for three hours a week. In the afternoon, students attend CIEE area studies and cultural elective courses.



    Students need to have a GPA of at least 2.5.


    2 semesters of college-level Mandarin Chinese (or equivalent) * / 1 college-level Chinese area studies course. *Students with near-native proficiency in Mandarin, please contact CIEE before applying.


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Course Information

Program Credit

  • Total credit: 15-18 U.S. semester/22.5-27 quarter credits

Course Credit

  • CIEE courses: 3 U.S. semester/4.5 quarter credits; 45 contact hours
  • CIEE Directed Independent Research: 3 U.S. semester/4.5 quarter credits; 15 contact hours; 135 research hours
  • Chinese language courses: 12 U.S. semester/18 quarter credits; 210 contact hours
  • Nanjing University courses: 2-6 U.S. semester/3-9 quarter credits; 28-104 contact hours

Language of Instruction

  • Chinese and English


  • CIEE required course
    • Contemporary Chinese Studies
  • CIEE language course
  • CIEE or Nanjing University elective course

Course Notes

  • The Directed Independent Research course is only open to Academic Year students during their second semester, instead of the area studies course. Interested students must submit a proposal. Approval for participation in Directed Independent Research must be obtained from the CIEE Nanjing director and the student’s home institution prior to arrival on the program. Students may pursue independent research in international relations, sociology, Chinese history, business, economics, or education.
  • Chinese language level is determined on site. The language courses seek to improve students’ listening, speaking, reading, and writing abilities by emphasizing communication and interaction between teachers and students, and by providing students adequate opportunities to express themselves in Chinese. The aim of the language courses is to enable students to communicate in a fluent and culturally appropriate manner, as well as prepare them for future study and work in Chinese settings.
  • Nanjing University courses are only open to students who test above the advanced level.

Fall 2020 CIEE Courses

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Communication, Journalism, and Media

Semester Credit

Languages and Cultural Studies

Semester Credit

Spring 2021 CIEE Courses

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Academic Projects

Semester Credit

Communication, Journalism, and Media

Semester Credit

Languages and Cultural Studies

Semester Credit

Host Institution Courses

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The courses below are sample courses taught in Chinese and are only open to CIEE students who complete or test above the advanced level. Students should confirm with the Director the specific courses offered at Nanjing University each semester. The CIEE academic calendar is approximately two weeks shorter than the calendar for Nanjing University, so students directly enrolled in the courses below may need to schedule early final exams with assistance from the Director.

Readings in Chinese – Advanced Higher (Gaoji Hanyu Yuedu)
The course enables students to improve their reading ability with increased exposure to articles on heated topics and Chinese history and culture through tutorials and in-class discussions.

Spoken Chinese – Advanced Higher (Gaoji Hanyu Kouyu)
This course assists students in improving their spoken Chinese by reviewing more than 40 articles from newspapers on topics such as women’s rights, education in China, the family planning policy, and social customs.

Contemporary Chinese Economics (Dangdai Zhongguo)
This course covers both the theoretical framework of Chinese economics, as well as the major economic issues in contemporary China, such as government policies, influences of international relations, and environment and natural resources.

Contemporary Chinese Foreign Policy (Dangdai Zhongguo Duiwai Zhengce)
This course introduces the development of international relations after the foundation of the People’s Republic of China. It primarily introduces the development of Chinese foreign policy, important events and decisions regarding the international relations of the New China, and foreign policy of several state leaders.

International Relations Studies (Guoji Guanxi Yanjiu)
This course provides an overview of the current political relations between China, its neighbors, and other global powers.

Learning Chinese through Film (Kan Dianying, Xue Hanyu)
Students practice their listening skills and learn modern colloquial Chinese through watching and discussing contemporary Chinese films.

Note: This course listing is for informational purposes only and does not constitute a contract between CIEE and any applicant, student, institution, or other party. The courses, as described, may be subject to change as a result of ongoing curricular revisions, assignment of lecturers and teaching staff, and program development. Courses may be canceled due to insufficient enrollment.


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Scholarships & Grants

CIEE offers more than $8 million in scholarships and grants annually to help students like you make your study abroad dream a reality.

Students who apply to this program are eligible for the following scholarships and grants:

  • Wollitzer Merit Scholarships in Area or Comparative Studies
  • Ping Scholarships for Academic Excellence
  • Global Access Initiative (GAIN) Grants
  • Stohl International Undergraduate Research Scholarships
  • CIEE Gilman Go Global Grant
  • MSI Grant

To be considered, submit the CIEE Scholarships & Grants application within your CIEE program application. Learn more at the Scholarships & Grants section of our website.

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Dates & Fees

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Dates & Fees

You get more for every dollar when you study abroad with CIEE, because our high-quality programs include everything from excursions to insurance. There are no hidden charges, and no disappointing surprises when you arrive.


  • Tuition
  • Housing
  • Advising before you depart to set goals and answer questions
  • Optional on-site airport meet-and-greet
  • Three-day orientation – an introduction to Chinese culture, your academic program, and the city, plus practical information about living in your host city
  • Full-time program leadership and support in your host city
  • Field trips and cultural activities
  • Overnight excursions
  • Insurance and other travel benefits, with CIEE iNext
  • 24/7 emergency on-site support


Application Due

Start Date

End Date

Fees & Housing

Fall 2020 15 weeks May 1, 2020 Sep 4, 2020 Dec 19, 2020
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Program Fees

CIEE offers the most student support of any provider in its program fee, including an airport greeting, full-time leadership and support, orientation, cultural activities, local excursions, pre-departure advising, and CIEE iNext travel insurance with benefits.

Participation Confirmation = $300 *

Educational Costs = $15,196 **

Housing = $1,975 ***

Insurance = $167

Visa Fees = $212

Total Fees = $17,850

Estimated Costs

Students are responsible and manage costs related to travel, meals, books, and personal expenses. Below are estimates for consideration.

Meals not included in program fee = $1,000

International Airfare = $1,300 ††

Local Transportation = $300

Books & Supplies = $50

Personal expenses = $1,350

Other = $150 †††

Total Estimated Costs = $4,150

Financial Aid

CIEE offers the most grants and scholarships of any study abroad organization, including $8 million/year in travel grants, merit-based scholarships, institutional and MSI grants, and Gilman Go Global Grants.

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This breakdown has been prepared from the program budget for the purpose of calculating eligibility for financial aid. During the course of program operations, actual figures may vary. It should not, therefore, be used as a basis for calculation of refunds. CIEE reserves the right to adjust fees at any time.

Students required to study on CIEE programs through a School of Record will be charged a $500 administrative fee in addition to the Program Fees listed.

* non-refundable

** direct cost of education charged uniformly to all students

*** includes breakfast and dinner during the week and most weekends for homestay students

this is for students staying in dormitories; for students in homestays, they will be provided breakfast, dinner and some meals on weekends. They only need approximately $400 for weekday lunches and some weekend meals.

†† round-trip based on U.S. East Coast departure

††† Optional: only if a student plans to travel outside of China, or Hong Kong, Macao or Taiwan but does not have a double entry visa, then it is necessary to apply for another visa.

Spring 2021 15 weeks Nov 1, 2020 Feb 19, 2021 Jun 4, 2021
Academic year 2020-2021 39 weeks May 1, 2020 Sep 4, 2020 Jun 4, 2021

To help you budget, keep in mind that students are responsible for the cost of international airfare, local transportation, books and supplies, visas, and personal expenses. In addition, ask your college or university study abroad advisor if your school charges additional fees for study abroad.

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