Skip to Content

Login: Cornell Users | External Admin
Programs : Brochure
This page is the brochure for your selected program. You can view the provided information for this program on this page and click on the available buttons for additional options.
CIEE: Nanjing, China - Intensive Chinese Language and Culture Program
Nanjing, China
Program Terms: Academic Year,
Homepage: Click to visit
Program Sponsor: CIEE 
Program Dates &
Click here to view
Restrictions: CU applicants only
Fact Sheet:
 Lang. of Instruction:
Chinese-Mandarin, English
 Lang. Courses Offered:
Chinese (Madarin)
 Program Type:
Direct Enrollment
 Minimum GPA:
Housing: Dormitory/Residence Hall, Homestay
 A&S Approved?:
Fields of Instruction: Asian Studies, Chinese Language (Mandarin), Cultural Studies, Independent Study
 Class Rank:
Study Abroad Advisor : Ann Hoover
Program Description:


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+Culture study abroad program is designed to help you improve your Mandarin proficiency and cross-cultural competency through coursework, 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 by 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 spring and Northwest China in fall on weeklong field trips
  • Visit historic monuments and temples in Nanjing and Shanghai in fall or Beijing in spring on weekend field trips
  • Get to know different people and places in Eastern China by exploring Jiangsu Province by local bus or taking a bullet train to Shanghai for the weekend

The CIEE Difference


With intensive language classes for intermediate to advanced speakers; area studies courses; and elective options encompassing a wide range of subjects, you can build a study abroad program the suits your interests and abilities. Study economics, foreign policy, Chinese history, literature or film, all in Chinese. Or pursue a particular topic of interest through an independent research project.


Visit the Great Wall and the Bund; see Terra Cotta Warriors; learn about habitats of giant pandas and Sichuanese teahouse culture and its history. Weekend and weeklong excursions to locations including Beijing and Shanghai, Yunnan and the Gansu Province provide exposure to the linguistic, cultural, and culinary diversity within China.

Cultural Immersions

Use sessions with peer language tutors and local graduate students; bimonthly group meals; and community service activities to improve your Chinese speaking, comprehension, and pronunciation, while gaining insight into the culture.


Total recommended credit for the semester is 15 semester/22.5 quarter hours and 30 semester/45 quarter hours for the academic year.
The area studies course is 45 contact hours and recommended credit is 3 semester/4.5 quarter hours. Required language courses are 120 contact hours and recommended credit is 6 semester/9 quarter hours per course. Contact hours and credits for host university courses are noted in the course listing.

Program Requirements

A full course load is three courses per semester. All study abroad students are required to take Readings in Chinese, Spoken Chinese, and the CIEE area studies course, Contemporary Chinese Studies. The language courses are offered at Intermediate, Advanced Intermediate, and Advanced levels, equivalent to Third, Fourth, and Fifth semester Chinese in the U.S. During the spring semester, academic year students are required to continue with each of the language courses.

Students who test above the Advanced level take coursework at Nanjing University’s Institute for International Students or courses at Nanjing University for Chinese students, and the CIEE area studies course. Academic year students who complete the first area studies course in fall semester may finish the area studies series in spring semester or elect Directed Independent Research instead.

About Nanjing

Nanjing is regarded as one of China’s most important commercial centers, as well as one of the safest and most livable cities in China. Just an hour from Shanghai by high-speed train, Nanjing prides itself on maintaining the atmosphere of a traditional Chinese city, with its classical temples and 600-year-old city wall, while being a base for hundreds of multinational corporations and many Fortune 500 companies. Literally named “Southern Capital,” Nanjing was the seat of power for Imperial China in the Six Dynasties and is remembered as one of the Four Great Ancient Capitals of China. With more than 40 colleges and universities and over 600,000 college students in the city, there are more students as a percent of population than any other city in China, making Nanjing a uniquely student-friendly environment.

Where You’ll Study

Founded in 1902, Nanjing University is one of the most prestigious universities in China, and is best known for its liberal arts and social science disciplines. It has established academic cooperation with more than 200 universities and research institutes in some 70 countries. The beautiful campus is centrally located in downtown Nanjing, and has over 43,000 undergraduate and graduate students. The local neighborhood features shops and restaurants from both Asia and the West. The city’s two main shopping districts are within walking distance.

Housing & Meals

Housing is included in the study abroad program fee, and students may live in a Nanjing University dormitory with a Chinese roommate or in a homestay.

Students live in Nanjing University’s international student dormitory, Zeng Xianzi, in a double room with one Chinese roommate studying in the Chinese Department or Institute for International Students or other social science departments of Nanjing University. The Chinese roommates are also CIEE peer tutors. Each room contains a bathroom and closets. The 12-story Zeng Xianzi building also houses the CIEE Study Center language and area studies classrooms and administrative and faculty offices. Additional facilities include a library, laundry facilities, small kitchen, basketball court and outdoor track and field. Private accommodations outside of CIEE housing may not be arranged. Meals are not included in the dormitory option and are the responsibility of the student.

Depending on availability, the travel distance to Zeng Xianzi from the host families varies. Most host families are located within 30 minutes from campus by bus or bike. The families provide breakfast and dinner on weekdays and most weekends. Students should expect to buy their lunch on weekdays, but may be asked to eat lunch with their host families on weekends. A homestay orientation is offered to students prior to moving in with the families.

Housing between the fall and spring semesters is included in the academic year fee. Students may be moved from their original accommodations into a single bedroom or twin bedroom with another foreign student. Students remaining in China between semesters may choose to travel during this period to enhance their language fluency and cultural understanding.

Academic Program

Established in 1982, the CIEE Study Center at Nanjing University focuses on helping students develop third through fifth semester Mandarin Chinese communication skills and provides many opportunities for exploring contemporary Chinese society and culture. The program offers an integrated curriculum that links the language classes, the area studies course on contemporary China, weeklong field trips to Yunnan or Sichuan Province in Southwest China in the spring semester and to Shanxi and Gansu Provinces in Northwest China in the fall, and day trips in and around Nanjing. There are three-day weekend trips, a weeklong mid-semester independent travel break and, for academic year students, a two-month winter break. All of these provide valuable opportunities to explore China, reinforce classroom learning, and provide natural settings in which to speak Chinese on a regular basis.

Study abroad students with advanced writing and speaking skills, as determined by an on-site placement test, and academic year participants who complete the Advanced level language course (equivalent to fifth semester Chinese in the U.S.) in the fall, may be able to enroll in special language coursework at Nanjing University’s Institute for International Students, including courses in history, international relations, economics, and literature taught in Mandarin. Students with Superior level or near native proficiency in Mandarin, whose language ability exceeds even the most advanced elective courses offered by the Institute for International Students, may enroll directly with local students in host university courses in political science, international relations, history, sociology or other departments of liberal arts and social sciences at Nanjing University.

Academic Culture

Students attend morning language classes Monday through Thursday, between 8 a.m. and 12 p.m. The language classes are small, consisting of six to 10 students, so students are encouraged to participate actively. Students also meet with graduate student tutors individually for pronunciation correction and coaching for a minimum of 30 minutes weekly.

Two times a week in the afternoon, students will take either a CIEE area studies course or a Chinese language course. The elective area studies course combines lectures, class discussions, fieldwork, presentations, observation papers, and group or individual projects. The elective Chinese language course focuses on contemporary topics related to Chinese society and culture, which are concurrently examined in the contemporary Chinese studies course.

The optional Seminar on Living and Learning in Nanjing takes place once a week in the afternoon and is taught in English. Instruction is highly interactive and includes group and small group work and discussions.

Nature of Classes

Study abroad participants take required language classes and the area studies course with other CIEE students only. Students with advanced high or superior level Chinese language skills take courses offered by Nanjing University’s Institute for International Students with other international students, or with local Chinese students in other departments.

Grading System

The area studies course is graded based on observation papers, presentations, and a final project, as well as participation and attendance. Language courses are graded on participation, class performance, daily homework, quizzes, and a mid-term and final exam.

Language of Instruction

Mandarin Chinese


All Chinese language courses are taught by faculty from the Institute for International Students at Nanjing University who specialize in teaching Chinese to speakers of other languages.

The area studies courses are taught by Dr. Colette Plum. She received her doctorate in East Asian History from Stanford University in 2006. She has taught American students in the U.S. and China for 15 years. Currently, she is working on a book manuscript about children and orphans during China’s war with Japan.

The Seminar on Living and Learning is taught by the Resident Director, Dr. Yanfei Fu.

Textbooks and Teaching Materials

To learn about the textbooks and teaching materials being used in CIEE programs in China and Taiwan, visit


Dates / Deadlines:
Term Year App Deadline Decision Date Approx. Start Approx. End
Spring 2015 09/15/2014** Rolling Admission TBA TBA

** Programs may fill long before their final deadline. * Recommendation--For SPRING: APPLY in MAY to study abroad the following spring. For FALL/YEAR: APPLY in DECEMBER. Later applications are always welcome, but colleges may need time to process your approval.