Founded in 1898, Peking University (PKU) was originally named
the Imperial University of Peking. It was the first national comprehensive
university and the supreme administrative organ for education in
China at that time. The university's establishment marked the
beginning of China's modern history of higher education. In 1912,
after the 1911 Revolution, the Chinese government decided to further
promote higher education, and hence placed PKU at the top of the
agenda, with the intent of making it a world-class university.
Peking University has continually been a pioneer in the course
of China's progress towards modernization. Throughout its one
hundred year history, Peking University has emphasized diligence,
conscientiousness, truthfulness and innovation.
Peking University is a full-fledged international university with
a cultural flare. Landscaped with beautiful gardens and courtyards,
the campus is a friendly and comfortable place for international
students to practice their Chinese, join in the many student activities,
and make new friends from all over the world. With twenty-four
hour security, the campus is a safe place to be day or night.
The students at Peking University enjoy a rich and vibrant campus
life, enjoying a colorful array of activities for students to participate
Peking University was among the first universities in China to
develop programs for international students, and has trained over
20,000 international students over the past five decades. With
a strong focus on education and transference of knowledge, Peking
University has become a major player in providing Chinese language
training and culture dissemination to foreign students. To raise
comprehensive quality and encourage students' independent thinking
and judgment, Peking University actively promotes educational reform,
constructs academic disciplines, and develops teaching materials.
The guiding principle of the reforms is the aim to "strengthen
the foundations of knowledge, encourage cross-field learning, teach
students in accordance with their aptitudes, and bring out every
individual's potential." Peking University is building up
a targeted concept for quality education and lifelong learning,
with an emphasis on 21st century oriented curriculum and course
setup. It also strives to keep pace with the world's current educational
developments to bring in an international dimension for students'
Peking University has also placed great importance on academic
exchange and international cooperation with foreign universities,
signing agreements with more than 200 universities in 50 countries
and regions; thus cultivating a worldwide network for academic
exchange and collaboration. It promotes a wide scope of cooperation
with leading universities worldwide. It has joint programs with
Harvard University and the University of Hawaii at Manoa in the
US for training American Sinologists.
Peking University has also co-sponsored intensive training programs
pertaining to Chinese society and culture with a number of renowned
universities, such as Oxford and Cambridge in the UK, Waseda and
Keio in Japan, and Stanford and Chicago in the US. In 2003, Peking
University initiated a regular undergraduate student exchange program
with the University of Hong Kong and the Hong Kong University of
Science & Technology. In addition, Peking University has
collaborated with Moscow State University in Russia to establish
a joint Graduate School to provide graduate education to both Chinese
and Russian students in all kinds of disciplines.
Peking University encourages international exchange at all levels
and different schools and departments play an important role in
academic exchange and cooperation. Fruitful international exchange
further enhances understanding and mutual cooperation between Peking
University and its partner institutions. At present, Peking University
has 46,074 students, among whom 4,400 are international students
from 80 countries around the world studying various degree programs
at the university, while a few hundred are learning Chinese at
Peking University annually.
Peking University is a comprehensive university comprised of multiple
disciplines including: Natural Sciences, Humanities, Social Sciences,
Medicine, and Information & Engineering. The University has
30 colleges, 12 departments, and 216 research centers. The university
offers a large spectrum of undergraduate programs and the most
PH.D programs in China: 93 undergraduate programs, 199 postgraduate
programs and 173 doctoral programs. The university also plans
to further broaden curricula and offer all forms of continuing
Each year, hundreds of academic seminars and lectures are offered
to students. These are also all kinds of festivals, such as science
and technology, culture, and sports, forming some of the highlights
of the cultural life on campus. Various other activities like
Scientific and Technological Innovations Week, Enterprising Business
Projects Competition, and "Challenger Cup" contest all
reflect the students' pioneering spirit and their eagerness to
grasp the pulse of the modern era.
All classrooms are air-conditioned and equipped with modern aural
comprehension training facilities. Peking's Centennial Commemorative
Hall, located near the Audio & Video Education Centre, is
often used by teachers and students to hold meetings, give stage
performances, and show Chinese and English films.
The University has 4,574 full-time faculty members, of whom 1,188
are professors and 1,503 are associate professors. Many professors
have achieved high academic standing and world renown. There are
also a host of younger and creative teachers working at the teaching
and research forefront. As an increasingly international community,
Peking University attracts about 20,000 visits annually. Among
them are predominantly university presidents and eminent scholars.
Presidents and Vice Chancellors from renowned institutions such
as Harvard, Yale, Oxford, Cambridge, Munich, Moscow, Tokyo and
so forth, have made their footprints at the Peking University.
Based on its outstanding tradition and international reputation,
Peking University has also become an international forum for heads
of foreign statesmen, social celebrities and business leaders.
Over fifty world famous statesmen, directors of international academic
organizations, and famous scientists and Nobel laureates have been
conferred with honorary doctoral degrees or professorship, thereby
raising the international profile of Peking University.
Peking University has made reforms in its teaching methods by
revising its teaching practice with the aim of cultivating students'
practical abilities and creative powers. As a result, teaching
principles of basic courses have strengthened, course
content has been enriched and renewed, and favorable conditions
have been created for students to fully develop themselves. Peking
University energetically advocates the learning concept of "being
diligent, rigorous, realistic and creative".
Peking University has a long history in training international
students to learn the Chinese language and culture. Its International
College of Chinese Language Studies enjoys a high reputation in
China and abroad, especially for its superb faculty and rich experience.
The College for Chinese Language Studies is responsible for teaching
Chinese language and culture to international students. This college
has over 70 faculty members of which there are 4 professors, 18
associate professors, 30 plus teachers, lecturers and assistant
lecturers, and administration staff.
All the teaching staff are graduates from Peking University's
Chinese Language & Literature Department. In fact, about seventy
percent of the teachers hold MA degrees, and thirty percent hold
Ph.D degrees. All teacher staff have certificates issued by China's
Ministry of Education for Teaching Chinese as a Second Language.
They are extremely knowledgeable about the Chinese language and
culture and have much experience teaching international students.
The Chinese language and culture programs offer a very flexible
curriculum designed with the best interest of the participants
The Peking University Library is the oldest university library
in China. It has a total floor space of 51,000 square meters and
houses more than 5.3 million books, the largest collection within
China's university libraries. The Peking University is home to
many rare books and rubbings. There are over 1.5 million volumes
of antique books, 170,000 volumes of rare books, and several thousand
precious books and extremely rare editions.
In fact, the Peking University library has one of the largest
collections of stone rubbings in the country. Possessing high
relic and artistic value, these rare books and rubbings are also
of great academic value for the preservation of and research on
The Peking University library also has an impressive digital library
system. This system provides the library's online catalog, international
pool search, subject updating and paper search and citation. Additionally,
a new wing, called Disc and Network Search Section, has been added
to the library. This area offers over a hundred workstations and
large capacity CD-ROMs, including a collection of over 270 academic
discs and various foreign network databases and e-journals.
There are various sports facilities on the Peking University campus
including a gym, indoor and outdoor swimming pools, sports field
with track, football ground, and dozens of basketball, volleyball,
tennis, and badminton courts, which students can use. Pool tables,
table tennis and rock climbing practice areas are also available
in the Sports Activities Center. Besides these, there are also
a couple of Stadiums where events, including sports competition
and other performances, are sometimes held.
In front of the foreign student dormitories, there are also badminton,
tennis, volleyball, and basketball courts. PKU facilities are
open to all international students, though some facilities, like
the swimming pool, require a usage fee. Students can rent equipment
by presenting their student ID card.
There are many places on the Peking University campus that offer
laundry services, from dry cleaning, bulk laundry, to mending and
more. There are also coin-operated washing machines inside student
dorm buildings and campus laundry mats.
Money & Banking
The Industrial Commercial Bank of China and the Agricultural Bank
of China are both conveniently located on the Peking University
campus. Off-campus, but close to PKU, are the Bank of China, China
Construction Bank, and Bank of Communications. Business hours
are generally from 8:30 am to 6:00 pm, Monday to Saturday. These
Banks accept credit cards and travelers' cheques, provide deposits,
remittance and currency exchange services.
You can also exchange currency at some bank locations using the
following credit cards: American Express, MasterCard, Visa, Diner's
Club, JCB, Million and Federal Card. Please note that not all
ATM machines in Beijing accept foreign ATM cards. The ATM machines
in major shopping areas, such as Wangfujing and Xidan, will accept
most international ATM cards, but the ATM machines located within
the Peking University campus may not. You may also apply for a
domestic ATM card if you open a Chinese bank account.
There is a University hospital located in the northwest area of
the Peking University campus. Students can see doctors at the
hospital with their student cards. The registration fee is 3 RMB
for an ordinary case and 5 RMB for an emergency case. Each individual
shall pay for his/her own medicine prescription. Extra payment
shall be made for inviting doctors for house calls.
Patients suffering from serious illness can go to Peking University's
Third Hospital, the Chinese-Japanese Friendship Hospital or the
ISOS Clinic where special outpatient services and wards are provided
for foreigners. The ISOS clinic has a pharmacy that supplies many
western drugs and medications.
Food & Groceries
There are more than a dozen cafeterias and restaurants on the
Peking University campus that offer a wide variety of cuisine,
including Chinese, Western, Korean, Japanese and more. Many eating-places
are also within short walking distance from the campus. A meal
generally ranges from 5 - 25 RMB per person depending on what and
where you eat. There are also many restaurants off campus offering
Chinese, Japanese, Korean and Western cuisines. The cost of eating
at restaurants is generally a little pricier than eating at school
cafeterias, but is still very affordable. In addition, restaurants
have longer service times and have a greater variety of delicious
foods to choose from.
There is one large supermarket and a number of grocery stores
on campus that sell basically everything you will need, from things
to eat, drinks, stationery to daily items and other living necessities.
Off-campus and within walking distance, is an array of stores,
including chain grocery stores, computer stores, local shops, music
stores, eyeglass shops, to clothing boutiques and more.
Students can send and receive packages at the post office located
in Shao Yuan's Building Number 7, located within the foreign student
dorm area. There is also a larger post office on the Peking University
campus that handles all kinds of mail services, including selling
of stamps and envelopes. Opening Hours: 10 am ĘC 4 pm, Monday
Peking University campus offers dormitory accommodation for international
students. Accommodation may be based on single or double occupancy.
The dorms are equipped with one or two single beds, desk and chairs,
TV, telephone, internet access, refrigerator, private bathroom,
air-conditioning and 24 hours hot water. The cost of outgoing
telephone calls and internet connection where available is to be
paid by students. Coin-operated washing machines in the dorm building
are available for student use.
Peking University is located in Bejing's convenient Haidian District
and is 38 kilometers away from the Capital Airport, 18 kilometers
away from Tian' anmen Square and the Forbidden City, 3 km away
from Summer Palace, 20 kilometers away from the Beijing Railway
Station and 13 kilometers from the Beijing West Railway Station.
From the airport to the university: 1 hour by car
From the train station to the university: 30 minutes by car