There is no mistaking Shanghai’s skyline. From the soaring Oriental Pearl Tower to the sweeping Bund across the Huangpu River, Shanghai shimmers with possibility. We invite you to experience first-hand all that this exciting city has to offer.
Shanghai is an economic and cultural hub of more than 22 million people. You will learn and communicate in Mandarin and English, while being exposed to the local Shanghai dialect—just one example of the many unique languages and cultures that exist in different regions throughout the country.
While in Shanghai, study the diversity and impact that international influences from all over the globe have on Chinese culture. Witness how globalization affects Shanghai and develop a greater understanding of how China’s influence is increasingly affecting the world.
You have the opportunity to study on the campus of Shanghai Jiao Tong University (SJTU), which is consistently ranked as one of the top five universities in China. SJTU is known for its academic rigor across more than 30 departments. You will take courses in English on the Xihui campus in subjects such as International Business and Relations, Political Science, Urban Studies, and more.
Shanghai will be your classroom. Discover the eclectic mix of Eastern and Western influences in the city’s architecture. Explore the Yuyuan Gardens in the Old City to get a sense of Shanghai’s past. Drink at one of the city’s many tea houses. Comparative course-related excursions to Tokyo (fall) or Hong Kong (spring) put the city’s powerful global and historical influence into context.
We want you to feel at home in China, so we do everything we can to help you integrate into life in Shanghai. From relevant coursework to unique course-related excursions—including visits to businesses, NGOs, and research institutions—we help you explore Shanghai in its local, regional, and global contexts. As China’s financial powerhouse, Shanghai provides an environment for learning not only about China, but also about Asia and the world at large.
After you are admitted, refer to the Travel Dates section of the Predeparture Information in your MyIESabroad account before booking travel.
**Please note: YOUR PROGRAM WILL END IN TOKYO at the conclusion of your field trip- please buy your return flight home from Tokyo, Japan. If, for some reason you need to go back to Shanghai after the program ends, please note that you will need to have multiple entries on your Chinese visa. Many consulates do not issue multiple entry visas. You are responsible for any fees associated with obtaining this additional entry; these fees generally amount to about 1,000 CNY.
Our mission is simple: to provide you with the best study abroad program possible—which includes the highest quality academic and cultural experiences.
We offer unique courses that explore Chinese language, history, and culture through an in-depth and hands-on approach. Our world-class professors and course options enhance your academic experience and provide you with new perspectives each day in class.
You will take 15-18 credits per semester. You create your academic experience by selecting from the following required and optional program components:
Academic highlights include:
THIS IS A LIST OF POSSIBLE COURSE OFFERINGS. THE AVAILABILITY OF COURSES VARIES FROM TERM TO TERM.
To learn more about IES Abroad’s innovative theoretical and pedagogical approaches to teaching language abroad, refer to the IES Abroad MAP for Language & Intercultural Communication.
The following are potential course options at Fudan University:
Donghua University (DHU) is one of China's key public research institutions known for its specialization in information technology, design, textile engineering, material science, and international trade. The IES Internships program will be located on the main Donghua campus in southwest Shanghai. DHU started accepting international students as early as 1954, positioning themselves as an open-minded university welcoming overseas students to enroll in undergraduate, postgraduate, and research programs, as well as non-degree Chinese language programs.
Founded in 1905, Fudan University is ranked one of the top three universities in mainland China. The university offers undergraduate, Masters, and Ph.D. programs, with strengths in Arts, Sciences, and Business, and is a member of Universitas 21. Fudan’s campus has unique architecture that reflects traditional Chinese-style buildings, gates, European-influenced structures, and the very modern Guanhua Twin Towers, and the main Handan campus is easily accessible by Shanghai’s extensive subway system. The university enrolls 45,000 students, of which 3,600 are international students. Chinese students admitted to Fudan University are considered among the best in China.
Shanghai Jiao Tong Universityen.sjtu.edu.cn
Shanghai Jiao Tong University (SJTU) is one of the top universities in China. SJTU was ranked as the 5th best university in China in 2013. The IES program will be located on the Xuhui campus of SJTU, about 4.5 miles from the Nanjing Road pedestrian mall. We are the only American program on this campus. This brings our program much closer to the central part of Shanghai.
We want to make sure that your greatest challenge is deciding which landmarks to see first or discovering the best café—not finding a place to live where you feel comfortable. We do our best to locate housing that is reflective of how the local students are living. Our goal is that when you leave Shanghai, it will feel like home.
Apartments - Live in an apartment with other IES Abroad students at the modern New Harbor Service Apartments (where the IES Abroad Shanghai Center is located). It is five subway stops from the main campus of Shanghai Jiao Tong University.
The standard, fully furnished apartment has two or three bedrooms with one or two bathrooms and one kitchen. You may share a double bedroom with another IES Abroad student or have a single room.
This option does not include a meal plan, but you can cook for yourself, eat in a campus cafeteria, or at nearby restaurants.
Homestays – Homestays offer the ideal environment for learning about China and improving your Chinese. While living in a local home may require an initial adjustment period, our Chinese homestay families are eager to get to know you and share their ideas, language, and culture.
You have a private bedroom and are provided two meals a day by your host family (breakfast and dinner) five days a week while the program is in session.
PLEASE NOTE: Homestay opportunities are extremely limited.
Part of making you feel at home in Shanghai is doing our best to help you feel safe and cared for. Whether it’s the orientation program that prepares you for what’s ahead, your housing that is well-located and comfortable, or a field trip that takes you to places off the beaten path—we’re all about our student services. This is just one of the things we’re known for.
The program begins with a specially designed, five-day orientation introducing you to the IES Abroad staff, your fellow students, health and safety procedures, the current social and political conditions in China, the expectations of you as a student in a Chinese institution, and the city of Shanghai.
CORE™, IES Abroad’s Comprehensive Orientation and Re-entry Experience, includes detailed information on academics, housing, transportation, cultural adjustment, health and safety, and other important topics.
Classroom sessions are combined with several ventures into the city, such as a scavenger hunt, designed to help you feel at home in your new environment. Practical Chinese lessons are combined with activities designed to help you learn your way around campus and how to use key facilities. Additional cross-cultural and re-entry information and support is provided throughout the semester.
You also take a field trip to a beautiful nearby "water town," called Tongli, as part of your orientation, which is included in your program fee.
Redefine the way you live and learn in Shanghai through our cultural activities, such as:
University Clubs & Events
While in Shanghai, you can take advantage of available on-campus activities. Clubs are student run and provide an excellent opportunity for increased campus integration. Past clubs have included:
Even though your adventure starts in Shanghai, our field trips and excursions take you beyond the city to discover the culture and traditions of your host country. The cost of this extended trip is included in the program fee.
A day trip to Tongli is included in the program fee, with the exception of personal expenses.
You also have a few long weekends to make plans to travel independently to other cities in China to provide contrast and context for what you’re learning in Shanghai.
Explore the town often referred to as “Chinese Venice,” where 15 small, crisscrossing river lanes are spanned by nearly 50 bridges. These bridges are regarded as sacred architecture by the local people. Nine hundred years of history can be seen by admiring houses built during the Ming and Qing dynasties, complete with courtyards.
The course-related excursions serve as an extension of classroom learning and provide comparative contrast between Shanghai and Hong Kong, Singapore, Taipei, or Tokyo. The cost of this extended trip is included in the program fee.
TAIPEI OR SINGAPORE
5-7 DAYS | FALL
HONG KONG OR TOKYO
5-7 DAYS | SPRING
Visit one of these Asian destinations, with their bustling streets and impressive high rises.
Southeast Asian Field Trip (optional)
Join your classmates on a field trip to either Cambodia, Thailand, or Vietnam, to explore more of what southeast Asia has to offer. This trip carries an additional fee and rotates location every semester.
NOTE: IES Abroad field trip destinations, activities, and lengths of stay may vary according to term and availability.
About the Center
The IES Abroad Shanghai Center is located in New Harbor Service Apartments - the same building as the Economy, Business & Society student apartments - in the heart of central Shanghai. You can easily access all parts of Shanghai from the Center, via an extensive subway and bus system.
Features of the IES Abroad Shanghai Center include:
Since 2008, Dr. Xiaojun Li has been the Center Director in Shanghai. He grew up in Inner Mongolia, China. Dr. Li worked with The Nature Conservancy (TNC) as the Senior Scientist and Chief Scientist of TNC’s International Programs for more than 11 years, conducting conservation projects and training programs in the United States, the Latin American region, the Pacific region, and China. He started and ran TNC’s Beijing office for three years. Dr. Li joined IES Abroad from The Mountain Institute, where he was the in-country manager for the Institute’s work at three field sites. He received his undergraduate degree from Inner Mongolia University, his Master’s degree of Ecology from Lanzhou University in China, and his Ph.D. in Biological Sciences. He taught undergraduate courses in Beijing Forestry University before he went to Michigan Technological University in the United States for his Ph.D. research that focused on forestry ecology. Dr. Li’s interests include biodiversity conservation, environmental protection, and sustainable development in developing countries.
IES Abroad Staff
Lihong YANGStudent Affairs Coordinator and Customized Program Coordinator
Yuying YANGProgram Assistant
Shuo HANAcademic Coordinator and Chinese Instruction Coordinator
Wei ZHANGChinese language Instructor
Liyan SUNChinese Language Instructor