Global Curriculum Program

Introduction to the Program

The Global Curriculum Program at ECNU a is a one semester program for international students.

About East China Normal University

Founded in Shanghai in October 1951, East China Normal University (ECNU) is one of the most prestigious universities in China and is sponsored by the national programs “Project 211” and “Project 985”. For more information visit the ECNU page here.

About the Program

ECNU Global Curriculum Program provides an excellent opportunity for students to learn about China through academic and cultural immersion during one semester. This program is open to current college students who wish to study in China for one semester (15 weeks). The program consists of two parts—Chinese Language course and Content courses on China Studies which will be conducted in English.

ECNU Global Curriculum Program offers a credit structure which is identical to the majority of North American universities and colleges. Course contents are carefully designed to meet the requirements of North American universities and colleges.

Start Date of the Program

Fall Semester: September

Spring Semester: February/March

Entry Requirements

You must be at least a high school graduate and you must be qualified for at least one of the following conditions to pass our English language proficiency requirement.

*English native speaker
*Studying or Graduated from an institution where English is the main language of instruction
*Have a valid TOEFL (Test of English as a Foreign Language) score which is higher than 80 (iBT) or a valid IELTS (International English Language Testing System) score which is higher than 6.0 or equivalent score in other forms of English language tests.

Application Deadline

For Fall Semester: July

For Spring Semester: January


Course Name: International Marketing (China Focus)
Course Description:
The course assesses the parameters of marketing strategy and success in the context of prevailing Chinese cultural norms and expectations in a rapidly developing consumer culture wherein social mobility, rapid change, technological sophistication and the growing incursion of foreign mass media and popular culture are the conditions of the day. The course lays out the underlying cultural logic that informs management, leadership, human resource conventions, and considers how these matters condition product development strategies, market research, and approaches to customer and public relations in different kinds of Chinese enterprise. Likewise, the course examines marketing questions with reference to common product, price, place, and promotion strategies in China. This course will include case studies from successful Western firms in China such as Apple and KFC and domestic firms like Haier and Lenovo.

Course Name: China’s Macroeconomic Impact
Course Description:
Since 1978 when China initiated economic reforms and opening up policies, the Chinese economy has been one of the fastest growing economies. China is now the world’s second biggest economy and second biggest exporter. What are the impacts of China’s rise on the global economy? What will other countries react to China’s economic emerge? This course is designed to provide students with the knowledge of what has happened to China and its impact on global economy in the last three decades. The course will offer in-depth discussion of Chinese macroeconomic development, industrial structure, trade pattern, economic imbalance, and its impact on the rest of the world economy, particularly on Asia, the US, and Africa.

Course Name: China’s Modern Economy
Course Description:
In the past three decades, China is one of the most dynamic and fastest growing countries in the world. Why has China been growing so fast in the last three decades? What are the keys to develop a successful business in China? How does the emergence of China affect the world economy? This course is designed to answer the above questions using a general framework developed for the Chinese economy. China remains a communist country with a significant legacy of a command economy. But it is also a market economy. Understanding this mixture – capitalism with Chinese characters – is a major aim of this course.
We will begin with several classes on the historical development of the Chinese economy. This includes the nature of the command economy developed during the Maoist era and the period of economic reform under Deng Xiaoping. Then we will investigate the main players of such an economy (central/local governments and various types of firms). The next is to analyze the three growth engines, globalization, industrialization and urbanization, and to show how they are interacted. We will also study the distorted state financial system and its implication on external imbalances. The last part of the course will be on the future of the Chinese economy.

Course Name: Introduction to Chinese Government, Politics and Policy
Course Description:
This is an introductory course on contemporary Chinese politics, government and public policy for international students. This course examines China from a variety of perspectives to enlighten our understanding of China today. All through the course, we will try to tackle the following questions: To what extent did the communist/revolutionary legacy affect reform-era politics and policy in China? Why has China been able to achieve such significant economic growth in the past three decades? Will economic liberalization inevitably lead China onto a political path predicted by modernization theory? On the international arena, is China really an emerging superpower or is it a developing country facing significant internal challenges that preclude its continued rise?

Course Name: Issues in Contemporary Chinese Society
Course Description:
China’s transition to a market economy and reture to the global community have huge impacts over the lives of its people, as well as the rest of the world. While covering other fields such as anthropology, political science, gender studies and urban studies, this course mostly employs a sociological perspective to examine issues in contemporary Chinese society. Topics examined include not only these well-known aspects of Chinese society such as guanxi and face, collectivism and family-centered culture, but also the emerging civil society, onging sexual revolution, and increasing social polarization that are more likely associated with the enormous social change over the past three decades. Students will be asked to critically and creatively think about change and continuity in contemporary China in relation to the dynamic and complex interaction of local factors and global forces.

Course Name: Globalization and Urbanization: China’s Urban Transformation and What It Means for the World
Course Description:
This course introduces students to the recent literature on China’s  immense urban transformation process, spatial restructuring and urban problems it causes. Much of the course focuses on the post-1978 period, which fundamentally differs from the preceding 30 years of state socialism. The topics are mainly divided into three parts. Part 1 is on the process and the uniqueness of urbanization in China. Issues such as the socialist ideology, the household registration (hukou) system, rural-urban migration and globalization will be discussed. We will also pay special attention to the process of urban development in Shanghai. Part 2 is on the spatial restrcturing of Chinese cities. We will study the dominant work unit (danwei) compounds in pre-reform era, urban renewal and expansion and the diversified urban landscapes in post-reform era, urban renewal and expansion and the diversified urban landscapes in post-reform era. Part 3 will examine various urban issues emerging with the rapid urbanization, such as the massive migration and assimilation, housing problemns, urban inequality and discontent.

Course Name: Cross-cultural Communication
Course Description:
The course introduces basics of cross-cultural communication, including main theories of culture. The course lays out the effect of language, nonverbal language and cultural identity on communication. How people adjust in different cultures, their acculturation stages and strategy will be discussed. Based on these knowledge, the practice how to communicate effectively and appropriately between Chinese and foreigners are discussed, such as Sino-USA people, Sino-German, Sino-Japanese etc. This course will include case studies, games, role plays and movie watching.

Course Name: Chinese Civilization: An Introduction
Course Description:
This course introduces to students the general Chinese civilization from the neolithic era down to the present. It emphasizes the late imperial period to the contemporary world. The course covers as wide topics as history, philosophy, politics, women’s studies, local society, economy, environment, etc. The goal of the course is to provide students with general knowledge of China’s past and present, but at the same time encourage them to deeply investigate one or two fields that mostly attract them. By exploring such fields, the course anticipates students to understand China’s glory and predicament, which will greatly improve the mutual understandings between Chinese people and foreigners. Students are required to read assigned readings every week and finish writing two papers centered on the topics they choose during the semester. They are expected to participate actively in the course by raising questions, leading discussions, or giving presentations.

Course Name: An Introduction to Classical Chinese Philosophy
Course Description:
This course The course is a comprehensive historical survey of the main philosophical traditions in China, including Confucianism, Mohism, Legalism, Daoism, Buddhism, etc. Through lectures, discussions, and reading of select primary and secondary sources, we will explore the formulations and subsequent transformations of key beliefs, doctrines, practices, and institutions that characterized specific philosophical traditions. We will also discuss about the general character of Chinese culture and the impact of Chinese traditions on people’s life today.

Literature and Art
Course Name: Contemporary Chinese Literature
Course Description:
This course introduces students to contemporary Chinese literature produced after 1949, and particularly after the Cultural Revolution (1966-1976), by selecting literary works that are not widely taught outside China and that depict and directly affect life in China today. China has made some of the most dramatic changes in its history during the last thirty years, and the literary works created after 1976 are equally meaningful and certainly rival, if not surpass, many works produced during the Republic. Through the magnifying lens of contemporary literature, the course closely examines the cultural, social and environmental concerns of this remarkably transformative period. Students will learn to contextualize modern and contemporary Chinese literature within specific historical periods and eras as a means to analyze and understand literature not just as an art but as an expression of social change. In other words, the historical use of literature for the purpose of addressing social problems and as a vehicle for social development in China is the main concern of this course.

Course Name: Contemporary Chinese Cinema
Course Description:
This course is to look at contemporary Chinese cinema as a visual art and to illustrate the ways in which it has been shaped by Chinese cultural, social and political tradition over the past three decades. Emphasizing on both film contexts and film texts, this course invites students to a broad cinematic analysis. In order to achieve such goals and inspire critical thinking, ten filmmakers and movies in diverse style and subject are carefully selected to cover a range of cultural, cross-cultural, intellectual, social, ethnic, and political issues. Students are required to watch an appointed film before each lecture and bring one or two questions about the film and Chinese culture into the class discussion. The Lecture-Discussion method is applied to provide a better understanding of both the development and pattern of Chinese cinema, and the culture exemplified in those films.

Chinese Language
Beginners’ Class:
Chinese language is regarded as one of the most difficult languages to learn due to its distinct pronunciation and pictographic characters. However, learning Chinese is never a mission impossible. The beginners are expected to acquire the elementary vocabulary and patterns, which may seem to be hard at the outset. It is the indispensable step for the Chinese language learning though. This entry-level Chinese language course will offer students a genuine vision of what and how the Chinese people are thinking and talking, thus helping them to pave the way for a more real and pleasant experience of the Chinese culture.

Intermediate Class:
This instruction is designed to improve your overall ability to understand and use Chinese language. The course consists of pronunciation practice, explanations and practice of new linguistic items, and practice of listening, speaking, reading and writing. The course aims at improving students’ overall language proficiency through a variety of learning activities and tasks.

Advanced Class:
Advanced Chinese class focuses more on analyzing the reading material or social phenomenon then presenting your opinions on it as well as writing reports. Students are expected to be familiar with the new words and new text before they come to the lessons thus in the class, the main focus will be discussions, reports, and presentations.

Credit Transfer
Students who wish to have the ECNU credits transferred to other colleges and universities are advised to consult with the appropriate academic authorities at their home institution in advance by showing our course syllabus posted online. Home institutions’ academic advisors make the final decision whether a particular course may be applied towards the major or elective requirement at the home institution.

ECNU Benefits

Cultural Activities
You will have opportunity to become fully immersed in Chinese culture and to better get to know your Chinese and international fellow students by taking part in all kinds of students’ activities such as sports meet, international cultural festival, day trips, etc.

Elective Courses
ECNU offers elective courses such as Chinese Martial Arts, Calligraphy, Chinese songs, Chinese painting to international students every semester. Some of the courses are free and others only charge you a small amount of money. You may register for the elective courses in the International Students Office.

Tuition Fees

RMB 18,000


There are four international student dorms on Zhongshan Rd. Campus: International Exchange Service Center, No.1 International Student Residence Hall, No.2 International Student Residence Hall, and No.12 Student Residence Hall. For further information on the accommodation visit the accommodation page here.

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