Your Guide to Chinese Government Scholarships

Last updated by Kamilla Yunusova on May 25th, 2015.


China study abroadThis article is part of a three-part series on finding scholarships in China. For more information, check out Finding the Right Scholarship for China Study and 20 Scholarships to Get You to China.

by Austin Groves and Francis Miller

Believe it or not, some of the more attractive but lesser-known scholarships are offered by the Chinese government. These include the Chinese Government Scholarship Program, local government scholarships, Confucius Institute Scholarships and university-specific scholarships. If you’re looking to study in China one of these might be just what you’re looking for.

Chinese Government Scholarship Program

The Chinese Government Scholarship Program consists of full and partial scholarships to attend Chinese universities for an undergraduate degree, graduate degree, language training or independent research. The scholarship covers tuition, lab fees and accommodations and students can also receive a living stipend of RMB 1,400-2,000 per month.

How do I apply?

The first part of the application process is done online. After that students are required to submit additional materials to a dispatching authority which in many cases is the nearest Chinese consulate. These additional materials include notarized photocopies of your passport, diplomas, school transcripts, health certificates, a study plan and recommendation letters. You will also be expected to get a physical examination based on the Chinese Scholarship Council’s (CSC) requirements and submit it along with your application.

Students can list their top three choices for schools they would like to attend but the Chinese government reserves the right to select the school they will attend.

If you are interested in the University Postgraduate Program or the Cooperative Program with Provinces and Autonomous Regions, you should apply directly to the university as each university has specific scholarship quotas. These two programs are an attractive option for students who want to study in a specific region of China.

Students can apply to these scholarships from the CSC website.

Additional Information

All undergraduate classes at Chinese universities are conducted in Chinese. Some Chinese higher education institutions conduct postgraduate programs and non-degree courses in English. If students do not already have a command of the Chinese language, they will be required to take one to two years of language instruction prior to beginning their degree.

Local Government Scholarships

Local government scholarships typically give a flat sum ranging from RMB 5,000-30,000 per year. The scholarships given out by local governments are focused on attracting foreign college students to study in a specific region in China. Click here to see a complete list. Applications are generally accepted from January to April every year.

University-Specific Scholarships

Many Chinese universities also offer scholarships to attract students from all over the world. Students interested in these should go to the university’s website for scholarship application and apply directly to the school. These scholarships are great for students that have a specific Chinese university in mind. For example, Peking University offers a scholarship for academic excellence.

Confucius Institute (Hanban) Scholarships
Deadline: 15th April, 2014

The Confucius Institute, otherwise known as Hanban, offers money to students who have studied Chinese and want to pursue majors such as Chinese language and literature, Chinese history and Chinese philosophy. Scholarships are also available for scholars and Chinese language teachers who plan on pursuing a master’s in teaching Chinese to speakers of other languages (MTCSOL) at a Chinese university. Many of the scholarships have an HSK score requirement which can be found on the Confucius Institute Scholarship website.

From what we’ve gathered, the Hanban scholarships are similar to the previous Chinese Government Scholarships in terms of the structure and award; the only difference  is the eligibility requirements. To apply for Hanban scholarships your school must have a Confucius Institute on campus and you must be interested in studying a major related to Chinese.

Francis Miller, Pengyou Intern, is a master’s student at the University of Pennsylvania studying Chinese. He won a FLAS Fellowship to study at the Inter-University Program for Chinese Language Studies at Tsinghua University in Beijing. He enjoys suannai, a traditional Beijing yogurt consumed with a straw.

Austin Groves, Pengyou Intern, is a senior at Drexel University studying business and Chinese. Austin received the Freeman Award for Study in Asia to help him pay for studying in China.