Return to the search form Return to your search results

CIEE Beijing Advanced Chinese Studies

Fast Facts

Sessions Offered:

- Fall, Spring, Academic Year


- Beijing, China


- Resident

- 15-18s.h./sem


- 3.0 GPA

- Junior standing

- Superior Chinese

Application Due:

- Spring 9/20

- Fall 3/15

- Summer 3/15

Program Cost:

- Click the Application tab

old Chinese city with shops inside of old walls

Secret places to explore in Beijing

CIEE's Advanced Chinese Studies Study Abroad Program in Beijing is designed for students interested in using their superior level of Chinese to study international affairs, business, history, or Chinese literature alongside Chinese peers. The Advanced Chinese Studies program provides support for superior level language students while taking coursework, entirely in Mandarin, in normal PKU courses.

This gives you an unparalleled experience of directly enrolling in one academic department or school at Peking University; attending weekly tutorials with Chinese peer tutors; taking a core course focusing on using Chinese in a professional context; choosing either an optional homestay (highly recommended for students on this program) or student dormitory housing near the university, and even conducting individual research.

Overall, you will advance your Chinese to a professional level with one-on-one tutorials and Chinese language meals with tutors and staff. You'll also participate in meaningful, topic-oriented cultural activities and lectures in Beijing as well as extended weekend trips that focus on specific topics of interest around China.

Academic Program

Students receive University of Iowa resident credit for the courses taken on this program. Students will enroll in 13 s.h. to 16 s.h. per semester comprised of a CIEE required language practicum and 3 more courses at Peking University. For course details please visit, CIEE’s program page.

In addition to a required CIEE required language practicum, you’ll directly enroll in one of Peking University’s many schools or departments, including the School of Mathematical Sciences, School of Physics, College of Chemistry and Molecular Engineering, School of Life Sciences, Department of Chinese Language and Literature, Department of History, School of International Studies, School of Economics, Guanghua School of Management, or School of Journalism and Communication. You can make your academics as challenging and diverse as you desire.

Cultural Activities

CIEE offers guided field trips to cultural destinations or events in and around Beijing, which can include historic sites such as Tiananmen Square, the Great Wall, and the Forbidden City. Activities may include more contemporary events, such as plays, rock music performances, art exhibitions, day hikes near Beijing, and interactive visits to orphanages or institutes for autistic children. Through experiential learning, students connect empirical experiences to content they learn in their classes, learning more about contemporary Chinese society and culture from the local people they meet. Extracurricular classes in Chinese calligraphy, painting, seal carving, and martial arts are also offered each semester. Two extended, weekend excursions to regions outside the city are also offered each semester.

Program Dates

This program is not being offered by CIEE for the Fall 2021 term.

Fall Semester is from early September through mid-January

Spring Semester is from early February through late June

For More Information

Steps to Studying Abroad

  1. Before initiating an application with CIEE, students must complete a Discover Study Abroad session at the University of Iowa. 
  2. After completing the Discover Abroad session, students must call the Study Abroad office at 319-335-0353 to be assigned to the appropriate study abroad advisor.
  3. Once assigned, students must meet with their study abroad advisor to receive program application instructions.

Study Abroad
1111 University Capitol Centre
Iowa City, IA 52242

Phone: 319-335-0353

Peking University

CIEE students jumping for a camera shot in Beijing

Kicking it in Beijing

Founded in 1898, Peking University (PKU) was, and still remains, one of China’s most prestigious universities. Its long traditions of scholarly excellence and political activism have produced many figures that have played instrumental roles in China’s post-Imperial history. The university focuses on advanced research in the natural and social sciences, and its campus, which was previously an imperial garden during the Qing Dynasty, is home to the university’s 30,000 undergraduate and graduate students. The PKU campus has modern classrooms, recreational facilities, and numerous cafeterias, as well as convenient access to Beijing’s mass transit system, all within a short walking distance of each other.


As the capital of the world’s most populous nation, Beijing is at the center of much that happens in China. It is a city of over 22 million people adapting as China emerges as a global player. Beijing reflects China’s long and evolving history and is home to some of the nation’s most well-known and culturally important sites such as the Great Wall, Forbidden City, and the Summer Palace. In addition to being the political and cultural center of China, Beijing is known as the birthplace of Chinese cinema and modern art. Beijing also has China’s largest concentration of top research institutions.


China, officially known as the People's Republic of China, is the second largest country in the world by land area. Its 1.3 billion citizens live mostly near the eastern seaboard. China has grown and evolved for over 5000 years and due to its growing economic power, is set to be one of the world’s superpowers during the 21st century.

US Department of State Country Information

The US Department of State provides safety and security information for every country of the world to help you assess for yourself the risks of travel. Each country information page contains a Travel Advisory, Alerts, and other important details specific to that country that could affect you.

Pay close attention to the entry and exit requirements, local laws and customs, health conditions, and other details to help decide whether traveling to any given country is right for you. Non-US citizen travelers may also wish to seek guidance from the embassy of their country of citizenship. The UI International Travel Policy for Students addresses restrictions on student travel to high-risk locations and engagement in high-risk activities abroad.

Living Arrangements

epic meal, family style in Beijing.  countless plates on the table, all filled with amazing treasures.

Traditional Meal Anyone? Yes Please!

Housing is included in the study abroad program fee. Students live in either the PKU foreign student complex—Zhongguanyuan Global Village dormitory—or in a homestay. Students may not live in accommodations that are not arranged by CIEE.

Zhongguanyuan Global Village

Living conditions in Zhongguanyuan Global Village are inviting and comfortable, and provide standard amenities such as beds, desks, armoires, private bathrooms, and Internet access. Shared kitchens are available, but location varies by building. Students live in suite-style units and each student has his or her own private bedroom. Each unit shares a common living space and bathroom and, depending on the layout, students will live with one to two other roommates. Roommates are either CIEE study abroad students or other international students.


Homestays are located within 45 minutes from campus by public transportation and have two or three bedrooms. Students have their own room and share the living room, kitchen, and bathroom (in some host families, students may have their own bathroom). Students are invited to family meals typically four times during the week, but should budget for other meals, including lunch on campus and meals not eaten with host families. Chinese family members speak Chinese only. This option is highly recommended for students who want to establish relationships with Chinese people, live in an entirely Chinese language environment, and to make rapid progress in Chinese language and culture study.


Meals are not included in the program fee for students living in the dormitory and are the responsibility of the student. Students usually eat at the student cafeterias or at the wide range of inexpensive restaurants in and around campus.


If you do not have a passport, it is important that you apply for one as soon as possible to ensure you receive it before the program begins. US citizens can find more information about how to apply for a passport on the US Department of State’s website.

Important notice for students without a valid passport or whose passport will expire within the next 12 months:

US citizens can find more information about how to renew a passport on the US Department of State’s website.

Students with a valid passport should check the expiration date. Passports must be valid for at least 6 months AFTER the anticipated return to the US from studying abroad. If your passport is not valid for at least 6 months after your anticipated date of return to the US, you must renew your passport before applying for the visa you will need to enter your host country.

Expedited processing service is available for US passports (although this still takes several weeks and is at an additional cost). UI Study Abroad encourages students to ask the passport agency at the time of application whether expedited service is recommended.

Non-US Citizens

Students who are not US citizens should contact their consulate for more information if they need to get a new passport or renew their passport.

Travel Arrangements

Airfare is not included in the program fee but students will work with CIEE to determine the best time for arrival. Students will also receive support from CIEE when applying for a Chinese visa. More information on travel arrangements will be provided by CIEE after the application cycle has concluded.


This program is open to University of Iowa students who fulfill the following requirements:

  • Clear interest and commitment- Students must demonstrate a clear academic or personal interest in the program’s subject matter, and a commitment to engage responsibly in coursework abroad.
  • Demonstrated preparedness and maturity- Students must demonstrate preparedness to take on the heightened responsibilities associated with international study and travel. Students must demonstrate a commitment to behave responsibly abroad while respecting cultural differences. Students are expected to obey both local laws and program directives conveyed to participants before and during the program. The University of Iowa Code of Student Life applies to all program participants while abroad.
  • Minimum 3.0 GPA- Students must have a minimum cumulative 3.0 GPA to participate in this program. Applications from students who have a GPA below 3.0 will be considered on a case-by-case basis.
  • Junior, or senior standing- Applicants must have junior, or senior standing by the time the program begins to participate in this program.
  • Applicants must have Superior Level Chinese language skills and also pass Peking University's placement test.
  • Good academic and disciplinary standing- Students must be in good academic and disciplinary standing at the University of Iowa. Students placed on either academic or disciplinary probation for any period of time overlapping with the study abroad program dates are ineligible to study abroad on a University of Iowa program. Academic and disciplinary history will also be considered when determining whether a student is prepared to represent the University of Iowa as part of this program. Students who are not in good standing at any point overlapping with the program dates will have their acceptance revoked and will be responsible for the associated late withdrawal fees.
  • Approval by CIEE and UI Study Abroad- Applications will be reviewed by UI Study Abroad and by CIEE. Students will be accepted based on their review of their application materials.
  • Attendance at mandatory orientation programming- Students must attend all in-person and online pre-departure orientation programming presented by UI Study Abroad and CIEE.


The cost sheet (forthcoming) outlines the total estimated costs associated with participating in this program and can be used for financial aid purposes. It includes fees charged on students’ U-Bill, as well as out-of-pocket expenses. Actual out-of-pocket expenses will vary from individual to individual. Quoted estimates are conservatively high, yet realistic.

The cost sheet includes the Study Abroad Administrative Fee and Mandatory Iowa Regents CISI Travel Insurance. Please see the respective websites for further details. If the fee is inclusive of UI tuition, it is calculated by Current Tuition. Please contact your study abroad advisor with questions regarding this cost sheet – call 319-335-0353 to schedule an appointment.

Scholarships & Financial Aid

For more information about receiving financial aid while studying abroad, please review the following:UI Financial Aid Information

You can find more information about options for funding your study abroad experience including scholarships on Undergraduate Scholarships for Study Abroad.

In addition, take a look at CIEE's Scholarship website for information about scholarships offered directly through CIEE.

How to Apply

Interested students should make an appointment with the designated UI Study Abroad advisor to discuss the program and the application process. Appointments can be scheduled by calling 319-335-0353. During the appointment, the advisor will provide full application instructions. Note: Application materials will not be reviewed unless a student has already met with the advisor to discuss the program.

The application process consists of the following steps:

• Complete the UI Online Application for Study Abroad. Please note that for study abroad programs through Spring 2022, students will not be charged the $50 application fee until travel is assured. If a student chooses to withdraw prior to the application fee being billed, it will not be charged. As part of the UI Online Application for Study Abroad, applicants will need to upload a copy of their passport picture page, a list of courses to take while abroad, and a statement of purpose.

• Complete the CIEE Online Application.

Application Deadline

This program is not being offered by CIEE for the Fall 2021 term.

Applications for the Spring Session are due on September 20.

Applications for the Fall and Academic Year Sessions are due on March 15.

Any supplemental materials are due to the study abroad office one week later

Acceptance and Confirmation Materials

Coming soon.

Health & Safety Planning

In addition to submitting their Confirmation of Participation form, students should review the following:

Study Abroad Resources

Passports and Visas

Iowa Regents CISI Health Insurance Information

Students are also encouraged to complete the PDFHealth Preparation Guide for International Travel form with their medical practitioner. This document is intended to help you plan for your medical needs abroad. Please DO NOT turn this form in to UI Study Abroad.


Any students who will need to apply for a Chinese visa will need to wait until receiving their official admission letter from CIEE before they can begin applying for a visa. CIEE and the UI Study Abroad staff can provide some assistance and advising on the Chinese visa application process, but ultimately the individual traveler (the student) is the person who is responsible for providing correct information on the visa application and securing the visa and all other required documentation prior to travel.


In order to prepare for your time abroad, you are required by the University of Iowa to complete two orientations. These may be in addition to orientations provided by your on-site provider. See below for more information.

Online Education Abroad Pre-Departure Orientation

You are required to complete the International Programs ICON course "Education Abroad Pre-Departure Orientation" prior to departure. This orientation is mandatory for all students going abroad under the auspices of the University of Iowa. It covers many practical matters about living overseas, such as health and safety, communication, money, goals, and much more. You will be enrolled in this course by International Programs and an email will be sent to you once enrolled. If you have any questions, you can email

Program-Specific Orientation

This orientation will be facilitated by your study abroad advisor and will cover content specific to your program and host country. It could be conducted in a group setting or one-on-one depending on your type of planned activity abroad. Your study abroad advisor will send you more information about this mandatory in-person session.

There are no photos available for this program yet. Do you have any photos to share with us? If you do, please contact us at:

1111 University Capitol Centre
The University of Iowa
Iowa City, Iowa 52242-1802

Phone: (319) 335-0353
Fax: (319) 335-0343