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Study Abroad in China
President Schapiro on NU in China Programs

IPD in China
by Anthony Chiodo, China Political and Economic Development 2012

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Karey Fuhs
Assistant Director, IPD Study Abroad
(847) 467-6953

Schedule Appointment

Open to non-NU students.
Location: Beijing, China
Institution: Peking University
Term: Summer Quarter (2014 Program Dates: June 23 - August 17)
Application Deadline: March 1, 2015
Fellowship Application Deadline: March 1, 2015
Language Requirement: None - all classes are taught in English


The Northwestern IPD China: Political & Economic Development program examines the origins and development of Chinese communism and its influence on modern Chinese political economy. Students will learn about the evolution of Chinese economic institutions and policies, international trade and foreign investment, and labor practices in order to understand recent economic and policy developments and China's growing role in the global economy. Students will also take intensive language classes in Mandarin Chinese. Weekly cultural and historical excursions complement classroom content and offer students a glimpse of Beijing's storied past.


Founded in 1898, Peking University, colloquially known as “Beida,” was the first formally established modern national university of China. With over 30,000 students, of which seven percent are international students, Peking University is a premiere institution for education and research, particularly in natural and social sciences. It is frequently ranked as one of the best universities in China. The campus is located in northwest Beijing, in the Haidian district, which is concentrated with many well-known colleges and universities.


China in Transition: Ideology, Political Economy, Law, and Relations with the United States (1 credit)
This course aims to provide a hands-on introduction to Chinese politics, economy, and legal system, as well as US-China relations. It is intended to help students make sense of what they observe and experience, while also offering an opportunity to explore selected themes and topics in greater depth and to acquire a more visceral understanding of how institutions and processes operate in China.
Course Instructor: William Hurst

China and the World: An Introduction to Contemporary Chinese Foreign Policy (1 credit)
This course introduces students to the key aspects of contemporary Chinese politics, with a focus on the ongoing process of economic and political reforms. Discussion topics include Chinese political history (1949 to present), Chinese government structure and institutions, factional politics, economic reforms and their political implications, corruption, nationalism, and mass media. This course aims to improve students’ factual knowledge about China and to engage them in scholarly debates on these topics.
Course Instructor: Tao Xie

Chinese Language: Interdisciplinary Course (2 credits)
While there is no language prerequisite to participate in the China summer program, students are required to take intensive language training while in China. Seven levels are offered, depending on the student’s skill level. The material covered during the program is equivalent to two quarters of Chinese classes at Northwestern.
The courses are taught by Chinese language instructors from the local university.


Excursions Within Beijing
Students participating in NU-IPD summer programs in Beijing will participate in weekend excursions to important historical and cultural sites, which will give context to Chinese society and civilization. Visits typically include guided tours of Tian'anmen Square, the Forbidden City, the Temple of Heaven, and the Summer Palace, among others. In addition, students will view cultural performance pieces such as classical Peking opera and an acrobatics show.

The Great Wall
An annual highlight of the program, students will have the opportunity to climb one of the most beautiful and well-preserved sections of the Great Wall of China, the Jinshanlong section..


Students on all NU-IPD programs in Beijing live in the Zhong Guan Xin Yuan international dormitory in shared suites. Rooms are air-conditioned and furnished, and Internet is available via Ethernet connection. Group lunches are provided on weekdays, but students are responsible for breakfasts and dinners.


Summer 2014 Program Fee= $7,000, which includes tuition, housing, program-related excursions, some meals, visa, and HTH Worldwide health insurance. Students should also budget $850 in fees, about $2,500 for international airfare, and approximately $2,200 for books and discretionary expenses, including meals, non-program transportation, personal travel, and other incidentals.

Students applying to this program may be eligible for IPD Study Abroad Fellowships and for external funding opportunities. Students participating in this program are subject to Withdrawal Policies for Northwestern-Sponsored Programs.

For more information about billing, finances, and financial aid for study abroad, please refer to the Money Matters resource page of the Study Abroad Office website or contact Krista Buda Bethel in the Financial Aid Office.