China has traditionally been not seen as a study abroad destination, mostly being known as the country with the maximum of its students going abroad for higher studies. What most of us don’t know is that the trend has been slowly reversing – China has the 3rd largest number of international students (3,28,330) as of 2012, following US & UK and leaving behind other “popular” higher education destinations such as France, Germany & Australia as per a 2013 report by the Institute of International Education.
What are the reasons that are making China a hotspot for higher education? A look at some of them:
The Chinese economy is the fastest growing economy in the world, growing at an average rate of 10% for the last couple of decades. Thsi rapid development has resulted in a significant improvement on Chinese people’s life. Moreover, it has been attracting more and more international companies to invest in China. The top 500 companies in the world have set up shop in China in its cities such as Hong Kong, Shanghai and Beijing. This in turn creates a big job market for students studying in China.
China has been investing a lot in scholarships for international students to study in China. The China Scholarship Council (CSC) will offer nearly 50,000 scholarships for international students in 2015 with the aim to make the country the top Asian destination for higher education options. This is part of China’s 12th five year plan (2011-15). (Read: Scholarships to study in China)
The humanities, medicine, engineering, science & economic programs offered by colleges and universities in China are renowned for their quality. Chinese degrees are mutually recognised in a number of countries across the world.
Higher education in China has been well developed. There are over 2000 universities and colleges, with more than 6 million enrollments in total. China has set up a degree system, including Bachelors, Masters and Doctoral degrees that are open to foreign students.
All universities and colleges with foreign students provide conditions for the students to live within or near the campuses. Foreign students studying in China can also live out of campus if they prefer to do so. Those who wish to study for degree have to go through an examination – only those whose exam scores are up to the required standard can become registered students to study for a degree.
Cost of study and cost of living in China is cheaper than other Asian countries such as Japan and South Korea. It is definitely cheaper to study in China as compared to the US, UK or other European nations.
China is the origin of oriental culture, many Asian countries cultures can be traced back to the root of Chinese culture. China not only has a profound knowledge of classical philosophy, rich classical literature, food culture, but also is endowed with many historical relics. International students coming to China will learn the experience of Chinese ancient culture and at the same time get to know one of the most modern civilizations in the East.
The Chinese government always attaches great importance to foreign students’ requirements. This is evident from the fact that in the very second year of the founding of New China which in 1950, China started taking reforms measures for overseas students.The Chinese government sincerely welcomes students from all over the world to study in China.