https://www.gooverseas.com/sites/default/files/styles/max_2600x2600/public/category-content/69086/header/beijing-157811.jpg?itok=CO6lRtaz

Study Abroad in Beijing, China

Browse Programs

Studying abroad in Beijing has exploded in popularity in recent years. China is home to the world’s oldest continuous culture, and nowhere is this more apparent than in the capital city of Beijing. Students who study abroad in Beijing will gain an intimate insight into a culture that continues to shape our world today.

Beijing is home to some of the country’s most important landmarks: the Forbidden city, the great wall of China, and Tiananmen Square are all physical reminders of the great vitality present in the city and the country itself. Those who study abroad in Beijing will not only learn from their course work, but from the hundreds of years of history that surrounds them.

Culture and Immersion

Beijing has a far-less foreign influence than many of the other international cities China boasts. It’s strong governmental and more traditional influences mean that the city hasn’t lost touch with its cultural roots. Some things are more fun to witness (such as the elderly practicing taijichuan in the parks each morning) while others are slightly less pleasant (such as the babies without pants!).

Beijing has many surprises in the midst of modernization and it’s not uncommon to see street dogs and chickens running among men dressed in business suits and tall skyscrapers gleaming in the distance.

Affordability

Generally speaking, living expenses in China do come out lower than what you’re most likely used to back home. However, personal habits and taste should be taken into consideration, as the reality is that China can be as inexpensive or as expensive as you want it to be. Beijing, in particular, is increasing in expenses but on a grand scale, is much more affordable than Shanghai or Hong Kong.

Public transit in Beijing will cost you 2RMB no matter where you’d like to go, with the exception of the airport (25RMB). A plate of dumplings at a corner eatery should range between 4-8RMB and a bowl of noodles will usually come in around 10RMB (depending on if you get vegetarian or beef).

Shopping for trinkets and souvenirs can be relatively inexpensive if you steer clear of expat filled areas and foreign franchises. Even still, if you’re a tough bargainer you should be able to snag a good deal at the Silk Market near Guomao or Yashou market in Sanlitun.

Good news is that beer can be as cheap as 3RMB for a 40oz bottle. Bad news is that coffee can cost as much as 30RMB a cup (and it will most likely be instant!). Hint: stick to green tea.

Culture Shock and Support

Depending on the study abroad program that you select for your time in China, you will have differing levels of support. Most programs, at the very least, will have a welcome orientation and other activities upon arrival to help you get better situated in your new environments. If you choose to forego a provider for you study abroad in China trip, you will find that once you get to there, you’re pretty much on your own.

Speaking from experience, I remember landing in Beijing Capital Airport and being like, “Now what?!” I had organized a hotel for my first night near the airport that included transportation, but of course the hotel failed to arrive. I then had a taxi drop me off at the university campus, but I had no idea where he should drop me off - turns out he couldn’t have picked a gate further away from my actual dorm (meaning I had to lug all of my suitcases all the way across campus). I arrived to my dormitory a little confused (and very winded) only to see my new roommate’s things thrown all over the room! Perhaps she wasn’t expecting me so early, but it was just another eye roll. My first few days are kind of a blur, as I tried to be adventurous and venture out around the university grounds for food and other essentials, but I’ll admit it was quite lonely.

Fast forward a few weeks and you’d think I’d been living in Beijing my whole life, but it definitely wasn’t the easiest transition. Sure, I learned a lot, but having the community that study abroad programs can offer (and the welcome of a friendly face) would have been worth the extra few hundred dollars!

Insider Tips

There are plenty of fun things to do in and around Beijing to keep even the most social and active student busy. Living in Beijing on a budget is possible if you avoid the western food chains (tempting, I know!) and stick instead to enjoying the many parks that Beijing has to offer. For instance, Chaoyang Park has a multitude of activities to offer students, whether you just want to stroll along their many trails or glide on the lake in a rented boat. Chaoyang even has a small amusement park if you’re up for a hilarious adventure (just don’t forget your camera!).

The 798 Art District is fun and not difficult to get to, just take a bus from Dongzhimen. This public art space has a lot of interesting galleries, exhibits, cafes, and street artists to walk around and enjoy. Consider joining expat athletic clubs, such as Heyrobics, to socialize while breaking a sweat - little pink shorts encouraged (but not required!).

The nightlife in Wudaokou tends to be cheaper than what you’ll find in Sanlitun, Houhai, and Guomao. Be sure to check out Fubar in Gongti (it’s a bar hidden behind a wall in the back of a hot dog restaurant!).

If you’re going to fly all the way to China for study abroad, make it worth your time! A trip to Shanghai means a trip to a watered down America. Those who choose to study in Beijing will see it is a city of undeniable influence. The city is recognized as the political, educational, and cultural nucleus of the People’s Republic of China. Beijing is also noted as a center of international exchange- those who study abroad in Beijing will learn a valuable lesson in international politics and business. Students studying abroad in Beijing will have access to universities renowned both for their curriculum and teaching staff. Check out the variety of study abroad in Beijing programs below to choose the path that best suits you!

China is renowned for being a relatively inexpensive travel and study destination. It is not uncommon to spend a mere USD $5 and feel full for days (especially if you’re stocking up on dumplings!) The country uses the Ren Min Bi as its currency (also know as the Kuai or the Yuan), and typically runs on cash versus credit cards. Regardless, its always good to have extra pocket money. Here are some scholarships available for study in China:

Contributed by Megan Lee

Showing 59 Programs

Shanghai
Go Abroad China

The GAC Learn Chinese in China program is designed to help you improve your Chinese proficiency and cross-cultural competency

42 reviews
Alumni Interview Badge
Staff Interview Badge
Photo Badge
Shanghai
Hutong School

Study Chinese in Beijing or Shanghai! Hutong School offers a unique Chinese study abroad program in China. Located in the cit

53 reviews
Alumni Interview Badge
Staff Interview Badge
Photo Badge
Shanghai
That's Mandarin Chinese Language School

Our 1-to-1 and small group intensive Chinese Program are our most popular courses, focusing on; speaking, listening, experiencing and understanding the Chinese language and its culture. Within this course you can choose to take either 4 or 6 hours of lessons per day.

130 reviews
Alumni Interview Badge
Staff Interview Badge
Photo Badge
Support Badge
Beijing
IES Abroad

**UPDATE: Starting Fall 2015, the Beijing – Contemporary Issues in China Program will merge with the Beijing – Language Inte

5 reviews
Alumni Interview Badge
Photo Badge
Support Badge
Beijing
The Alliance for Global Education

Beijing’s place at the forefront of Chinese popular culture and social change has deeply influenced new generations of Chines

3 reviews
Beijing
CET Academic Programs

Want an intensive academic environment where Chinese is the the top priority? CET Beijing students sign a full-time language

20 reviews
Alumni Interview Badge
Staff Interview Badge
Photo Badge
Beijing
New York Film Academy

Nestled in the heart of the Haidian district of Beijing, NYFA Beijing’s unique intensive 4-week Filmmaking program is taught

2 reviews
Staff Interview Badge
Beijing
Beijing International Chinese College BICC

Learn Chinese language with Beijing International Chinese College (BICC), the largest private Chinese language school in Beij

12 reviews
Staff Interview Badge
Photo Badge
Support Badge
Shanghai
Minds Abroad

To understand China as a whole, a student must go beyond the modern and highly developed cities of Beijing and Shanghai and v

7 reviews
Staff Interview Badge
Photo Badge
Support Badge
Beijing
Syracuse University

The SU Beijing academic program begins with a Signature Seminar with on-site lectures in Beijing and other cities. The semest

3 reviews
Alumni Interview Badge
Staff Interview Badge
Beijing
Academic Explorers

Challenge your body and mind with martial arts and Mandarin Chinese language study! For over one thousand years, Chinese mar

11 reviews
Alumni Interview Badge
Photo Badge
Support Badge
Shanghai
That's Mandarin Chinese Language School

Many of our Part-Time students are already living in China and fit their Mandarin classes around their work and other commitm

28 reviews
Alumni Interview Badge
Staff Interview Badge
Photo Badge
Support Badge
Beijing
Minds Abroad

This program aims to give students an authentic insight into modern day China by living in Beijing where they will explore ma

0 reviews
Staff Interview Badge
Shanghai
That's Mandarin Chinese Language School

Between the months of June and August your Kids and Teens ( 7- 17 ) can join us at our Shanghai or Beijing campuses for some

34 reviews
Staff Interview Badge
Photo Badge
Support Badge
Beijing
CIEE

Are you interested in a rigorous and truly immersive cultural experience? Whether you want to study international affairs, bu

0 reviews