IAP expects you to be an active participant in preparing yourself for your study abroad experience. As a participant on an IAP program, you will receive a pre-departure orientation, either in-person or online. The type and format of this orientation will vary by program and will be provided to you upon acceptance to the program.
Students will participate in a CIEE Online Pre-Departure Orientation. Meeting with students online, the Academic Director and Program Coordinator share information about the program and site, highlighting issues that alumni have said are important, and giving students time to ask any questions before leaving home. The online orientation allows students to connect with others in the group, reflect on what they want to get out of the program, and learn what others in the group would like to accomplish.
A mandatory weeklong orientation session, conducted in Shanghai at the beginning of the program, introduces students to the country, culture, and academic program, as well as provides necessary logistical information about adapting to life in Shanghai. Students also take their language placement exam at this time to determine their appropriate Chinese language level. Required and optional workshops and local excursions are led by CIEE staff. Students also meet individually with the Academic Director to finalize course registration and preview assigned materials for their required courses. Ongoing support is provided on an individual and group basis throughout the program.
Participants select one of three housing options. While every effort is made to accommodate the first choice, CIEE is unable to guarantee any housing option prior to the start of orientation week.
Campus Residence Hall with CIEE Roommate-The Campus Residence Hall is a five-story facility located on the ECNU campus and has a common lobby with 24-hour security and laundry facilities. There is a student computer room and study lounge on every other floor, as well as a kitchen and bathrooms on each floor. The residence hall is a 10-minute walk from the CIEE Study Center, where students can meet with faculty and staff and use library and computer facilities, and is within walking distance to a light rail and other public transportation.
Campus Residence Hall with Chinese Roommate-This option is located in the same residence hall as previously described, but students are paired with a Chinese student from ECNU. The Chinese roommates are required to speak only Chinese, so this option is recommended for students who wish to live in a more intensive Chinese language environment.
Meals are not included in these two housing options and are the responsibility of the student. Three meals a day are available in the campus cafeterias at a moderate price.
Chinese Host Families-Chinese host families are located within five to 15 minutes from campus by public transportation. Students have their own room in the host family apartment and share the living room, kitchen, and bathroom. Students are invited to most family meals, but should budget for their own lunches, for most weekend meals outside of the home, and for all meals during group field trips and individual travel. Chinese family members speak Chinese only. This option is highly recommended for students who want to live in an entirely Chinese language environment and to make rapid progress in Chinese language.
Both housing options are equipped with Internet access via a broadband ADSL connection. A limited number of computers are available in the CIEE Study Center and Campus Residence Hall, and nearby Internet cafes offer access for a low hourly fee. Students are encouraged to bring a wireless-enabled laptop as the CIEE Study Center has wireless access.
Excursions and Activities
A variety of field trips complement classroom work, including visits to local Chinese companies and factories, government agencies, and media groups. Group cultural activities include an acrobatics show, a river cruise along the Bund, a bike ride through the French Concession, a Chinese and CIEE student talent show, international student sporting events, and group meals with Chinese roommates and families. To expose students to locations outside of Shanghai, the program includes a weekend trip to areas in neighboring provinces, such as Yangzhou, Mount Huang, or Putuo Island.
A number of non-credit optional classes are offered to program participants, including Chinese martial arts, cooking, calligraphy, chess, music, and Shanghai dialect.
The weeklong field trip includes lectures and visits to famous historical and contemporary sites of great national and international importance. Depending on the circumstances, the destination for the weeklong field trip is either Beijing, the political epicenter of China, or Nanning in Guangxi province, which is the center of China's reach into Southeast Asia. Guangxi is also home to the most diverse collection of ethnic minorities in China. A field trip to Nanning includes visits with members of the local ethnic minorities and a visit to the Sino-Vietnamese border.
While in Beijing, activities include hiking on the Great Wall, riding through the last of the hutong or old alleyways, visiting such architectural marvels as the Forbidden City and the Summer Palace, touring the world famous Bird's Nest and Water Cube at the Olympic Center, and visiting the Great Hall of the People, the site of China's national legislature. The field trip is intended to go beyond tourism; its goals are both educational and cultural. Students are expected to complete pre-departure readings; attend classroom lectures, films, and discussions; and conduct fieldwork assignments during the trip.
You will be enrolled in the UW System required health insurance through Cultural Insurance Services International (CISI) and the cost of the insurance coverage is included in program fees.
CIEE Resident Director
Use the links below to find out more information on academics, daily life and student impressions for this program.CIEE Shanghai CGC Academic Notes
(Spring - 2013-14)