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Overseas and Off-Campus Programs

China: Beijing

Semester: Fall, Spring, Full Year
Offered: Annually
Estimated Dates: Fall: Late August to mid-December, Spring: early February to late May
Program Focus: Regional Area Study with language component
Prerequisites: CHIN 102. A “B” or better in the language. 3.0 cumulative GPA required and a 3.2 GPA in language study.                    
Housing: Dormitories
Campus Contact: Keith Dede
Professor of Chinese
, 503-768-7445

Program Design

Housed at Peking University, the premier academic institution in China, this program includes study of the Chinese language, and a variety of courses that focus on the art, history, literature, economics, politics and sociology of China. Students live in dormitories on the Peking University campus with access to on-campus cafeterias, restaurants, libraries and athletic facilities. Students end the semester with one of three two-week study tours.

Full Year Participation:
After successful completion of this program you may be eligible to participate on one of our other language intensive programs. It is your responsibility to contact Keith Dede before registration to determine your eligibility to continue on one of our other programs.  Full year participation after fall semester entails participation in the January Term program in Beijing.


Requirements Fulfilled: This program fulfills the 8-credit International Studies general education requirement, and the overseas study requirement for Asian Studies major and World Language major Chinese (Primary). Select courses can be applied to the Chinese minor. Students who complete Chinese 201 or higher fulfill the World Language proficiency general education requirement.

Credits: Credit earned varies based on courses completed. Students may earn up to 19 credits. (Overloads are not permitted.) 

Curriculum: 6 credits of language study, offered at the intermediate and advanced level. 12 credits (three classes) of area studies courses taught in English. Optional non-credit courses in Calligraphy and Taiji/Martial Arts

Course Offerings:

Courses may change without notice. The list below should be used as an example.

Social sciences

  • PS 401: China in the Global Economy (3 credits) This course will examine the evolution of China’s increasing role in the global economy. It will deal with different aspects of China’s foreign economic relations, including trade, investment, the impact of WTO accession, regional integration and international economic institutions.
  • PS 402: Chinese Political Reforms (3 credits) This course aims at understanding the two and half decades of reforms in the People’s Republic of China. By discussing the reforms’ background conditions, international context, policy options, difficulties, achievements, failures, and possible future, the instructor intends to lead an advanced course on contemporary Chinese political economy.
  • SO 301: Chinese Women’s Studies (3 credits) The contemporary status of Chinese women and the issues they face will be the focus of this new course. Besides the treatment of women under the old society, most attention will be devoted to women’s uphill struggle for equality in the 20th century.
  • SO 302: Chinese Media and Society (3 credits This course examines the role of media in contemporary Chinese society in an era of globalization, and changing social structures. The new forms of media, internet and cellphone, as well as traditional radio and TV will be thoroughly explored.
  •  IR 401: America and China (3 credits) This course concentrates on Post Cold War events in the context of American predominance, decline of Soviet power and emergence of China as a new force on the international scene.
  •  EC 401: Rural Economics (3 credits) This course is designed to help students understand the rural dimension of China’s economic transition. It examines the impacts of economic reforms on the life of Chinese peasants, including the effects of marketization and globalization on income structure, labor mobility, ownership rights and other major aspects of the rural economy. It also provides an overview of the implications of the changing economic landscape for social and political development in rural China. The reading materials include a diverse and balanced collection of studies done by both external and domestic specialists.


  • AR 301: Chinese Arts & Culture (3 credits) This course aims to give students a better understanding of ancient and modern Chinese fine arts (painting, sculpture, architecture, etc), as well as folk and popular arts (crafts, opera and film). A comparative approach will be employed to highlight differences with Western genres.
  • LIT 301: Chinese Literature and Society (3 credits) This course explores the relationship between literature, man, and society by analyzing the works and minds of major 20th century Chinese writes and against the background of anti-traditionalism and East-West culture encounters.
  • HIS 303: China in Transformation, 1840s-1960s (3 credits) The course aims at understanding of China’s transition from a traditional society to a modern nation by examining the historical forces since the mid-19th century. Nationalism and Communism will be two organizing themes that provide a framework to thread various phenomena all the way to Chinese Communist victory in 1949. The post-Mao reforms that undid China’s communist economic system will also be discussed.
  • HIS 401: Philosophy and Science in Pre-modern China (3 credits) By examining Chinese philosophy, science and technology, this course will elaborate on the relationship between culture and the advancement of science and technology in Chinese historical contexts. It seeks to explain both the preeminence of Chinese tradition and, so some extent, the lack thereof in modern times as a result of East-West encounters.

Chinese language

  • CH 201 (6 credits) The purpose of the intermediate level class it to help students increase reading comprehension as well as oral proficiency in Mandarin. After this class, students will independently learn Chinese and participate in advanced language training course either in the US or in China.
  • CH 301 (6 credits) Students in the advanced class will learn to appreciate various unique aspects of written and spoken Chinese. Chinese will be the language of instruction with the purpose of reinforcing students’ skills in speaking, listening, reading, and writing. Also, introducing and discussing important aspects of Chinese culture and current news will become an integral part of the advanced level.
  • CH 303 Special Language Session (4-6 credits) Special cases of advanced students who do not fit in regular classes (for instance, heritage speakers) will be organized into this special session. here, language studies will be more vigorous and demanding.


Fee Breakdown:

Total Fee (includes Tuition & Program Fee): $32,334 (per semester)

Tuition: $25,287

Program Fee: $7,047*

*Included in the program fee are room/housing, board/meals, field trips, administrative fees, and supplemental health insurance. Not included are airfare, passport and visa expenses, primary insurance coverage, photographs, books, immunizations, and incidentals.

Stipend: Students will receive a stipend to cover the cost of meals and transportation costs not covered by the program fee.

Estimated Airfare (Round Trip PDX to PEK): $1,000 - $2,000

Estimated Health Insurance Fee: $1,275.50*

*All students participating in overseas programs are automatically enrolled in iNext, a supplemental travel insurance program. The fee for iNext is covered in the program cost. However, students are also required to have comprehensive health insurance during their time abroad. All students participating in overseas programs, both abroad and domestic, are automatically enrolled in the College’s student health insurance program. Similar to a regular semester on-campus, students participating in overseas programs may waive enrollment in the student health insurance program if they have other comprehensive health insurance (e.g., through a parent, guardian or employer) that 1) provides coverage for them in the geographic region in which they will be studying and 2) includes mental health benefits. Click here for more information regarding health insurance & overseas programs.

Program Preparation

Application Process: Applications are due one year before the start of the program

Visa: Students will be required to apply for a visa in order to participate in this program. More information will be provided upon admission to the program.

Country-Specific Health Information: Click here to view specific health information for people traveling to China.

State Department Country Information: Click here to visit the State Department’s China page.

China, Beijing GC

39.986913; 116.305874