The China Scholarship Council (CSC) is a nonprofit organization headed by the Chinese government’s Ministry of Education which seeks to provide financial assistance for international study. Institutions of higher learning are quickly recognizing the importance of providing opportunities for students across the globe. By 2016, as many as 300,000 Chinese students studied internationally in the United States alone!

With that in mind, studying in China can also be an immensely rewarding experience that offers an international perspective and top-notch education. Home to hundreds of universities, China offers top-notch academic and research opportunities for students of all backgrounds. The Chinese Scholarship Council offers several awards to help assist with the cost of education, for both Chinese and non-Chinese students.

Chinese Government Scholarships for Non-Chinese Students

In addition, the organization focuses not just on providing scholarships for Chinese students studying abroad, but also for international students looking to study in China. CSC promotes funding opportunities for international study for up to 279 Chinese Universities. These scholarship opportunities include the Chinese Government Scholarship – Chinese University Program award and more.

1. Beijing Government Scholarship

An excellent award administered by the Chinese Scholarship Council is the Beijing Government Scholarship. This scholarship was created by the Beijing Municipal Government to attract top international students to the capital city of the People’s Republic of China. This award is divided into five different categories which provide annual funding for tuition only. Students from all backgrounds are encouraged to apply, including:

  • Doctoral students – can receive up to 40,000 RMB annually
  • Master’s students – can receive up to 30,000 RMB annually
  • Undergraduate students – can receive up to 20,000 RMB annually
  • Senior scholars / long-term language students – can receive up to 10,000 RMB annually
  • Exchange students – can receive up to 5,000 RMB annually

2. Chinese Government Scholarship – Chinese University Program Award

The major scholarship administered by the CSC is the Chinese Government Scholarship – Chinese University Program award. This scholarship is a full scholarship program complete with three funding levels for full, half, and partial tuition costs to study at  221 participating Chinese universities. In addition to free housing, this award may offer a monthly stipend of up to 3,000 RMB month for Masters or 3,500 RMB for Ph.D. students.


  • Graduate students only
  • Non-Chinese citizens only
  • Language Proficiency – achieving HSK4 (Hanyu Shuiping Kaoshi Level IV) in the Chinese Proficiency Test is strongly encouraged, although it may not be required depending on if a university offers English courses
  • Under 35 years of age for Master’s and under 40 years of age for the Ph.D. program

Application Process

Unlike some scholarship programs, the application process for the Chinese Government Scholarship – Chinese University Program is actually handled individually through each participating university. Although the award details do not vary much between different universities, students interested in this scholarship are encouraged to research different Chinese universities to understand which school might be the best fit for their program of study, or how scholarships may differ.

Below is one example of how the CSC determines the application process and requirements for this award specifically for students looking to study at Shanghai Ocean University:

  • The study plan must be a minimum of 800 words for Master’s  and 1500 words for PhD
  • Apply online, complete forms, and then submit two completed forms

Required Materials

  • Completed Application Form
  • Notarized Diploma
  • Academic transcripts.
  • Two letters of recommendation.
  • Study plan
  • Notarized copies of research achievements.
  • Certificate of English/Chinese proficiency.
  • A copy of a valid passport.
  • Physical Examination form

Be sure to check out the CSC Scholarships page for more information about available awards and the application process.

The Chinese Scholarship Council also provides and helps coordinate several other scholarship opportunities for international students. These scholarships may be specific to a certain type of student or area of study, so be sure to read more about whether one of these funding awards may apply to you. Note that the following list does not include all possible awards, so be sure to check out the CSC home page for complete details and other opportunities if you have not yet done so.

3. CAS-TWAS Ph.D. Fellowship Programme

One example is the CAS – TWAS President’s Ph.D. Fellowship Programme award. This scholarship is a collaboration between the Chinese Academy of Sciences and the World Academy of Sciences to provide up to four years of funding for 200 recipients pursuing Ph.D. studies in China. This fellowship provides a monthly stipend of either 7,000 or 8,000 RMB to cover living expenses such as health insurance and accommodation in addition to waiving other costs such as tuition fees, application fees, and even visa fees.

4. World Meteorological Organization (WMO) CSC Scholarships

For undergraduate, graduate, and doctoral students specifically interested in the field of meteorology, the China Scholarship Council offers a specialized scholarship. In conjunction with the World Meteorological Organization, the Chinese Ministry of Education has recognized the importance of studying and researching the global climate and environment. The WMO – CSC Scholarship offers partial scholarships for non-Chinese students of all degree levels who are pursuing the following majors:

  • Meteorology
  • Hydrology
  • Water Resources Monitoring and Management

China Scholarship Council Resources

For students looking to start the application process, the China Scholarship Council offers additional support and resources on their website. Sample documents such as research proposals, resume templates, personal statements, and more are available. These resources can help prospective students become leading candidates to receive the funding awards for studying in China.

Check Also: Available Programs for International Students

Chinese Government Scholarships for Chinese Students

Notably, the China Scholarship Council administers the Chinese Government Award for Outstanding Self-Financed Students Abroad. This award is granted annually to 500 Chinese Ph.D. students studying outside of China who have made significant academic or research contributions. One notable recent recipient is Peng Yin, a Biologist, and Professor at Harvard University.

Award Details, Eligibility, and Requirements

  • Requires academic success or research contributions in a Ph.D. program outside of China
  • Recipients span more than 25 different countries
  • Past recipients have been awarded a $6,000 stipend


We hope that you’ve enjoyed reading this information about China Scholarship Council and Chinese Government Scholarships. To know more information on studying abroad, check out the Available Programs for International Students.

About the Author: Hyun Lee

Hyun is the founder at Global Scholarships. He has received a full-tuition scholarship at Birmingham-Southern College as well as $1,000 Burger King Scholarship for his undergraduate degree and has been offered a fully funded scholarship consisting of tuition, living stipend, and health insurance for computer science Ph.D. program at North Carolina State University. Read more about his scholarship journey here.

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