CIEE Intensive Chinese Language + Culture in Nanjing, China
100% Rating
(7 Reviews)

CIEE Intensive Chinese Language + Culture in Nanjing, China

Looking for a rigorous, language learning experience that pushes you to explore beyond the classroom? You’ll find it in Nanjing!

The CIEE Intensive Chinese Language and Culture study abroad program is designed to help you improve your Mandarin proficiency and cross-cultural competency through coursework and community interaction and engagement. With small class sizes, homestays, group excursions, and weekly sessions with peer tutors, CIEE study abroad in Nanjing gives you access to a full immersive cultural experience.

Study abroad in Nanjing and you will:

- Improve your Mandarin through intensive language training in small classes, a peer tutor program, and living with a Chinese roommate or host family

- Learn about contemporary China through a core course and work on a social research project conducted in English

- Explore Southwest China in the spring and Northwest China in the fall on week-long field trips

Program Type
Subject Areas
Asian Studies
Cultural Studies
Degree Level
Academic Year
Host Family
Official Transcripts
Letters of Recommendation
Language Requirement
GPA Requirement
Starting Price
Price Details
The program fee includes:

- Tuition and housing
- Pre-departure advising and optional on-site airport meet and greet
- Full-time program leadership and support
- Field trips and cultural activities
- CIEE iNext travel card, which provides insurance and other travel benefits

CIEE also offers several scholarships for participants; please see website for full details.
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Questions & Answers

Program Reviews

based on 7 reviews
  • Academics 9.4
  • Support 9.7
  • Fun 10
  • Housing 9.9
  • Safety 10
Showing 1 - 7 of 7

Small Program Big Heart

From day one, the teachers and staff are here for you. They truly make the experience personal and genuine, and will help you work through any cultural difficulties or academic struggles. The program usually consists of a small group of students, averaging 8-10 students. But unlike the other China programs in Shanghai and Beijing, there is no real distractions often accompanied with large cities. The cultural lifestyle of Nanjing is very safe and friendly, being a city mostly comprised of students and the elderly. This perfect location makes for a perfect chance to learn and enjoy the culture which can greatly complement your Chinese language studies. The teachers themselves allow classrooms to become a very inviting space for learning and sharing, and often every semester in this program, teachers and students all develop a deep relationship. Whether you're feeling homesick for the holidays, you have nothing to worry about. We celebrated Thanksgiving and Halloween, and even coordinated unplanned hiking trips with our teachers. As evidenced by everyone else writing reviews, the experience you can have in this program will be among the most memorable because of the teachers and friends that you meet here and the experiences you will create together.

Yes, I recommend
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Study Abroad with CIEE Nanjing

Studying abroad with CIEE Nanjing has opened my eyes to a whole new world. But before I talk about the good stuff, what I learned, I want to touch on the excellent management and nature of the program itself. Upon arriving I immediately had a problem with housing. I registered for a student dorm but was listed as registered for a homestay. The staff at CIEE pulled some strings and helped me smooth over the matter and found a room for me. Right away they proved that they are there to help as best they can. I can't speak for other programs, but because there were only nine students participating in CIEE Nanjing, the staff was able to pay close attention to our problems and spend a lot of time making our experience as smooth and comfortable as possible. In addition, the student to teacher ratio was 3:1 in one class and 5:1 in another - something very hard to come by and invaluable in the learning experience. The ability for CIEE Nanjing staff and teachers to pay close attention to every student's needs is one of the best aspects of this program and helps in more ways than one can imagine (like when my tooth chipped or I had stomach issues or needed to exchange money to travel abroad etc., the staff was able to plan and help me any problem within a day or faster). Apart from the excellent staff and teachers, the environment in which we studied and lived together felt like home - close-knit, safe and sound. Whether it was on a program-organized excursion to the deserts of Dunhuang or the Purple Mountains in Anhui, or just us kids going out and exploring Nanjing, we always felt safe and welcome. Nanjing has dozens of colleges and universities and the highest student to population ratio in the world, so if you like going out and meeting people at cafes or karaoke bars you will have a great time and plenty of opportunities to meet people and practice speaking chinese. Which brings me to what I learned. My vocabulary, pronunciation and grammar improved greatly, but schoolwork doesn't leave a lasting impression or deepen your understanding of really communicating in the language. The best part of this program is the opportunity to really immerse yourself in the language by going out and meeting everyday Nanjingers and students from around the world.

How can this program be improved?

Really commit to the language pledge.

Yes, I recommend
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Nanjing Spring 2017

Before I start I will say a little about myself my name is Maddi Chinn and when I went into this program I was a sophomore at Husson University in Maine with a major in English Education. At the time I was 19 and had very little knowledge of Chinese. My main reason for wanting to go to China was not only to learn to language, but also to learn more about myself. My grandfather on my dads side is from China and I was hoping to find or learn more about where part of me comes from. Anyway, last spring I was able to study abroad in Nanjing, China and it was the best experience I've ever had. During this program I was pushed to every limit I possibly had, but I learned so much from it. Although my experience was a little different from my peers. One of the requirements for the program is at least 2 semesters of college level Chinese, but Ciee accepted me with only one semester. In the program there are tree types of classes A, B, and C, but after taking the placement test it showed I was not anywhere near ready to be in classes A, B, or C. So, in my case I was able to take an actual Nanjing University International course. I believe being able to take this class with other students that were just beginning Chinese made my experience more well rounded then my peers. In my NU class there were students from South Korea, Australia, Germany, Thailand, Uzbekistan, Poland, Peru, and Spain. I got to learn about so many cultures while learning Chinese. Another thing about this NU class was since everyone in it was a beginner it was easier to ask to for help or find an understanding of a word or phrase. To elaborate my peers, that I now consider good friends, had at least 1 semester of Chinese more than me, so it was harder for them to try and understand why I would have trouble on things that came to them naturally. Through this class I made twice as many friends and in multiple countries and I actually think I learned more Chinese at a faster pace in this class. I think that if all the Ciee students could participate in the international classes, like I did, they could get more culturally enlightening experience.
Ciee was also very accommodating with my lack of Chinese. Not only did they have me take the NU class they also got a teacher to give me a private class for the second period. That second class was very hard, but I wouldn't have had it any other way. My friends and I had the chance to actually volunteer teaching English to 3rd grade class of Chinese students. That experience solidified my decision to teach English as a second language in Asia. This is a little off topic, but it was a fun little story. When we were teaching we taught in groups of three in my group there was also my friends Hailey and Pablo. So of course the kids would call me Maddi laoshi, Hailey Huali laoshi, and for some reason they had a hard time saying Pablo so he became BaBa (father in Chinese) laoshi and we all thought it was the cutest and funniest thing.
The city of Nanjing itself is rather large, but that means there's always something to do and the food is amazing! There were two streets one we called food street which is closer to the main entrance to the university and one called Dark Ally. On dark ally they have a bibimbop (Korean rice dish) restaurant or in Chinese called Ban Fan. That place was one of my favorites, along with a place that one of my friends called Mom's. On food street they have a biangbiangmian place, so if you study in Nanjing you HAVE to try these places and of course get jianbing for breakfast.
Another fun thing that happened in Nanjing was when we went on our group trip to southern China. I got to see a completely different side to China. Also, as long as you provide information on where your traveling (and the hotels are legit and safe) the teachers allow you to go on weekend trips. With the semi- flexible schedules my friends and I went to Beijing, Xian, Suzhou, and Shanghai. These trips also include spring break! a group of my friends decided to go to Tibet for a week and I decided to go to South Korea and Japan. Being in China gives you a good starting point for these kind of short trips on the side.
A final thing that I learned the very hard way is to always recheck your visa! Once I was in China I had my visa changed to a multi entry visa, but because of my lack of Chinese and our interpreter was having trouble interpreting what the visa officers were saying I received a brand new type of Visa where once you return to China from abroad you have to leave 30 days after returning and then come back again for 30 days. Since this was not properly explained I overstayed by 24 days. So when I went to head back to America after the semester I was stopped by immigration and had to pay about $2,000usd to leave the country. Moral of the story always triple check your visa!
I could go on forever with this, but this program changed my life in many ways, it enhanced my knowledge of China, it allowed me to visit places I've never thought I would ever go, gave me some of the greatest friends I have ever had, and made me realize that I want to live the rest my life in Asia. So once I graduate from college with my degree in English education I plan to teach English in Asia and live there as much as possible.

How can this program be improved?

I think allowing all Ciee students to take classes in the international university would greatly enhance their experiences!

Yes, I recommend
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Look no Further

This program was well-rounded in that it is academically rigorous while also focusing on cultural immersion and the overall experience of studying abroad in China. CIEE students are expected to speak Chinese as much as possible through small (4-10 students) participation based courses, volunteer teaching at a local school, and group activities, which means this program is not always easy, but you'll take full advantage of your study abroad experience, your Chinese will improve drastically, and you'll be able to speak intelligently to a wide variety of topics related to Chinese society and China-US relations. You'll have the opportunity to live like a local but explore and travel like a tourist, and you'll meet people that share similar passions and genuinely want to see you succeed. CIEE is a small, close-knit community of people dedicated to the success of the group and each individual. The teachers and coordinators are compassionate, supportive, and hard-working, spending time with us outside of class and getting to know us beyond class participation. The Chinese roommates, tutors, and host families are some of the most encouraging, patient people I'll ever meet, and the other CIEE participants shared my passions for learning Chinese and international relations. All of this made it possible to build connections with the entire CIEE community almost instantly. We traveled everywhere from Beijing to Tibet, deciphered Chinese menus (which are more difficult to read than you would think!), and spent hours in the study rooms together as a group, and these shared experiences have made us friends for life. I truly feel I have a second home in Nanjing, and if you're looking to study abroad, look no further because this program is amazing!

No, I don't recommend
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Didn't Want to Leave

I loved my time at CIEE in Nanjing! I thought the classes were great! I learned more in the first two days then I did in two years at my university. The staff is part of what made this experience so enjoyable. They're great teachers with a passion for teaching. They really care and want you to succeed. Nanjing is a great city. I wish I had more time to explore it. I felt my Chinese improved greatly and I would do the program again. I am sad that I only did a semester and not a full year.

How can this program be improved?

No recommendations.

Yes, I recommend
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Indeleble Memories

This program is totally based on the student. The difficulty and challenges to learn the language are dependent on how much the student is committed to learn. The flexibility and support of this program was the best. The staff really care about you, and about your life in China. I could not hope for a better place to spend my study abroad. Nanjing is more livable ando walkable than the other major cities in China.

How can this program be improved?

Extending it a little more. I did not want to leave.

Yes, I recommend
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A Year of Study at Nanjing

CIEE Nanjing was definitely the best study abroad experience in my life. Instead of going to the larger cities of Shanghai or Beijing, I decided on Nanjing because I wanted to have a more intimate atmosphere with smaller class sizes. I really got to know my teachers and fellow participants very well and kept in touch since then. I am so happy that I was able to study in the CIEE Nanjing Intensive Chinese Language program for one full academic year. If there is one program I recommend to anyone who wants to improve their Chinese as well as have friendships that will last forever and a great opportunity to travel around China, this is definitely the program for you.

How can this program be improved?

The one way that this program could be improved is organizing the classes into levels during the first week.

Yes, I recommend

About CIEE

A nonprofit, non-governmental organization, CIEE is the world leader in international study and exchange programs. For 65 years, CIEE has helped thousands of students, professionals, and educators gain the knowledge and skills necessary to live and...