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For international students, Chinese universities offer internationally recognized master’s programs in English. International students whose native language is not English may need to pass a language test to be admitted.


The normal duration of a full-time Master’s program is two years, with a few completed within three years. The academic year starts in spring, starts in March, and ends in mid-July. The autumn semester starts in mid-September and ends in January. However, the term dates will vary according to the length of the summer vacation and the lunar new year. Here are some of the key data of studying for a master’s degree in China. Please see the table for details:

Masters Study in China – Key Details



Oldest UniversityPeking University (1898)
International Students


Course Length2-3 years
Average Fees29,000-95,000 RMB (USD 4,200-13,760)
Academic YearSeptember to June(second year)

As one of the world’s financial powers, a Masters’s Degree in China offers the chance to study at the heart of a booming economy.

China is keen to put itself forward as an option for foreign postgraduates. Several important projects have been initiated by the Chinese government to improve its higher education system and increasing numbers of colleges and universities are becoming accredited to admit international students.

This guide will answer your questions about postgraduate study in China, with information on universities, tuition fees, funding opportunities, and student visas.


(1) Master programs in China


Please click the following link to view the details of the China master program:

Master programs in China



(2) Masters fees and funding


The cost of studying and living in China is relatively low. In fact, most of your everyday essentials may be much cheaper than in your home country.

Tuition fees vary depending on the institution and subject, so comparing different programs is always a good idea. You can get started by searching the Chinese Master’s degrees in our course listings.


1. Tuition fees

Typical tuition fees for a Chinese Masters’s degree will be 29,000-95,000 RMB (USD 4,200-13,760), but exact costs can vary by course and institution. MBA programs and other specialized qualifications will be at the upper range of this scale.


2. Accommodation costs

Larger and more modern Chinese universities may have dedicated housing for international students, but private lettings will also be available. Average prices can vary a lot depending on the type of accommodation you require and the prices in your area. Expect to pay between 2,480-3,100 RMB per month (USD 370-460) per month, but be sure to research actual costs in advance.


3. Other fees

Tuition fees are not the only cost you’ll have to cover when applying to study in China. You may also need to pay for the following:

Application fees: Using CUCAS (the official international application service for Chinese universities) is free, but individual universities generally require a fee of around 610-1,015 RMB (USD 90-150).

Visa fees: These vary for each country but will cost somewhere in the region of 950 RMB (USD 140) for a year’s study.

Medical examination fee: This varies depending on where it is undertaken, but is usually in the region of 675 RMB (USD 100).

Health insurance: This is approximately 880 RMB (USD 130) a year, depending on your needs and provider.


(3) Admissions for Master’s Programs in China


1. Admissions Process

1.1 Apply online here. Get into, enter keywords, go in to find the corresponding project, apply online, and fill in the basic personal information.

1.2 Submit your application materials and pay for the application fee of your intended program.

1.3 The admissions committee at your university will review your application.

1.4 You will get an update from China Admissions about your application

1.5 An admission letter will be sent out to you so you can start your studies in China.


2. Admission Requirements

Applicants for the Master’s program must have attained a bachelor’s degree and students who graduated from non-Chinese universities must hold a bachelor’s degree from a university accredited by the Ministry of Education of China.


3. Application Materials

3.1 filled out an application form online and the required documents will be listed on the application platform.

3.2 Graduation certificate and degree diploma

3.3 Official transcripts of your academic achievement up to the present, must be original documents or certified copies either in Chinese or English.

3.4 Personal statement letter

3.5 Two recommendation letters from your referees

3.6 Photocopy of your passport


(4) Scholarships and other Masters funding


A variety of scholarship programs have been established to help overseas students study in China, including several which are run by CUCAS. Other opportunities include:


1. Confucius Institute Scholarship

The purpose of this scholarship is to help students settle into studying in China. It is also open to scholars and language teachers, so would be an ideal opportunity for mature students (up to the age of 35). You need to have acquired a good level of Chinese, and be able to prove this. There are six possible categories to choose from, so you should be able to find funding that suits your needs.


2. Chinese Local Government Scholarships

These scholarships aim to attract students to certain areas within China to study the Chinese language and culture.


3. Chinese Government Scholarships

The Chinese Ministry of Education offers scholarships for students to undertake studies and research at Chinese universities. Areas of study and research are much more open. Ideal if you don’t want to study in Chinese.


4. The British Council runs a scholarship

The British Council runs scholarship programs open to anyone with a British passport (or Irish passport for students of Northern Ireland). All you need to pay for is return flights, visa costs, and medical insurance. Most of these scholarships are designed for students currently in higher education but could be a great opportunity as a bridge between undergraduate and Masters’s studies.

You may also be able to receive funding directly from your university. Many will have scholarships available, some of which will be designed to help attract and support international students.


(5) matters needing attention

1. Applying for a Residence Permit


The last thing to do before getting suck into your Master’s is to apply for a longer-term Residence Permit. Your university can help you with this: You won’t be left to do it by yourself.

If you did not have to undergo a physical examination to receive your visa, you may have to undertake one in China to receive your residence permit. Again, your university can help you with this.

The procedure for obtaining a residence permit may take up to six weeks. During this time your passport will be with the Public Security Bureau. As such, you cannot make plans to leave the country during this period.

Once you receive a residence permit, this will be pasted into your passport, effectively replacing your visa. This will allow you to exit and re-enter the country.

You must carry your passport (with a residency permit) with you at all times, as passport checks are undertaken regularly.


2. Health insurance and medical requirements


As a Masters’s student, you will normally be staying in China for over a year. As such, you will need to hold adequate health insurance, which covers the duration of your stay. You will also need to undergo a physical examination, preferably before arrival.


3. Physical examination


Your examination should be performed in a public hospital one month before departure for China. If the examination is performed in a private hospital, you should receive a notarized certificate. A form (PDF) for this is available from CUCAS, the official application support service for international students in China.

In some circumstances, passing a physical examination may be a condition of your visa. If so, this will be made clear during your application.


4. Buying insurance


International students in China are also required to purchase both medical insurance and personal accidental death and injury insurance. You can do this before or after arrival in China.

If you opt to purchase student health insurance in China, you can do so when registering with your university. One of the most popular policies comes from the Ping An Life Insurance Company, which offers an insurance scheme for foreigners in China with an insurance premium of 800 RMB (USD 130) per year. You may be asked to purchase cover for your full course duration in advance.

China is a big country and rural hospitals may not have the same facilities as urban centers. Make sure your insurance includes transport. Your insurance may also limit the range of hospitals you can be treated at.


(6) FAQ


1. Is China good for Masters?

One of the fastest-developing countries in the world, China is a great place to start or enhance your career. If you choose a master’s degree which incorporates work experience, you’ll have a chance to gain first-hand experience of work in China, becoming immersed in Chinese culture and business practices.


2. How many years is a master’s degree in China?

Two years, two years is the minimum length for most Masters in China, and some programs are three years long.


3. Is it safe to study in China?

They have heard stories of people they know who have had dangerous experiences in their home country or of studying abroad. But in China, they say they feel completely safe and free to go anywhere in the city at any time and not feel in danger.


4. Is China a good place to live?

Yes, many ex-pats, especially women, find living in China is much safer than in cities like London or New York. Street harassment and catcalling are virtually unheard of for foreigners, and streets tend to be well lit at night. Petty crime rates, particularly for foreigners, seem to be particularly low.


5. How is studying in China?

Common academic areas of study in China include math, economics, engineering, political science, urban development, and, of course, Mandarin. Programs available in major Chinese cities usually combine academic study with a variety of intensive language lessons and culturally immersive opportunities.


6. How good are Chinese universities?

Indeed, as the U.S. News & World Report’s Best Global Universities Rankings show, among the top 750 universities around the world, China has 65. Moreover, Chinese universities occupy five positions among the top 10 Asian universities ranked by the report.


7. Is University in China free?

Americans can also attend public universities in China and pay tuition costs between $2,500 and $10,000 per academic year, which can be affordable when compared to U.S. tuition rates. The best tuition deals in China, however, are reserved for students able to pursue their studies in Chinese.


8. Can I work while I study?

Yes – but permissions vary depending on where you study. This is because it is only recently that the Chinese government has allowed international students to undertake part-time work.

As a general rule, students can work on average 12 hours per week and may take up extra hours in the holidays. However, you must have permission from your academic institution. As such, it is best to contact your university regarding their policy on part-time work for international students.


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