If you’re looking for an intensive, Mandarin language learning experience that helps you explore beyond classroom, you’ll find it in Taipei!
Study abroad in Taiwan and enhance your Chinese language skills and cultural understanding through rigorous coursework, electives in Chinese or English, and experiential learning.
In Taipei you will:
Further your study of traditional Chinese characters and improve your standard Mandarin Chinese through small, intensive language classes, while Cultural Ambassadors and Taiwanese roommates help guide you through the culture and language
Elective course taught in English that explores Taiwanese identity through its contemporary art and culture
Engage and earn credit through an organizational internship or independent research
The CIEE Difference
Through Intermediate to Post-Advanced, we offer language courses that suit your particular skill level. You’ll also have access to a host of elective courses taught in both Chinese and English on subjects ranging from Business and Media, to Art, Culture and Identity. You may also be eligible for an internship or independent research opportunity.
Taiwan boasts a political environment and culture in which non-profit organizations (NPOs) and non-governmental organizations (NGOs) abound. And the city of Taipei is at the heart of this flourishing “civil society.” Study abroad students are encouraged to volunteer in their community in order to better understand this unique aspect of Taiwan and to contribute to the communities in which they study.
Cultural Activities and Field Trips
During orientation and throughout the semester, several trips are planned to temples, mountains, tea plantations, porcelain workshops, and museums around northern Taiwan. Most field trips are integrated into the curriculum of the Chinese Language Practicum and many include Cultural Ambassadors who will lead excursions designed to help facilitate both cultural exploration and intercultural exchange between peers.
Total recommended credit for the semester is 16 semester/24 quarter hours and for the academic year, 31 semester/46.5 quarter hours.
The required Chinese language courses have 180 contact hours and 12 semester/18 quarter hours. The CIEE core course has 45 contact hours and 3 semester/4.5 quarter hours. In addition, students are required to take a 15-hour Chinese Language Practicum with recommended credit of 1 semester/1.5 quarter hours.
A full course load is three courses for the semester and five courses for the academic year. All study abroad students take a Chinese language course, the Chinese Language Practicum, and a CIEE elective course. Academic year students need not repeat the language practicum in the spring semester.
It is often said that some of the most traditional forms of Chinese culture, religious practices, intellectual and cultural values, and creative arts are best preserved on the island of Taiwan. At the same time, Taiwan maintains a thriving civil society, with its democratic political system, free press, and uncensored Internet. Its capital, Taipei, is an international city with some six million residents and superb restaurants, modern hotels, ancient temples, churches, and an active nightlife. Taipei is known for its cuisine, and its popular music, film, and television are widely influential throughout East Asia.
Where You’ll Study
Established in 1927, National Chengchi University (NCCU) is one of Taiwan’s top educational institutions and is renowned for its social sciences and liberal arts colleges. Its business school is highly ranked and among the very best in Asia. Many of Taiwan’s top government officials are alumni of National Chengchi University. The university enrolls 9,000 undergraduates and is located 8 miles from Taipei. Its green and tranquil campus is situated along the banks of a river and at the foot of a scenic mountain, making it an ideal place to study. The surrounding neighborhood, which caters to the local student population, is lined with restaurants, and cafés.
Housing & Meals
Housing is included in the study abroad program fee. As intercultural learning is a signature element of this program, CIEE students have three housing options that include living with local Taiwanese students or a family. The following options are available to all students at the CIEE Study Center in Taipei: on-campus dormitories with three Taiwanese roommates, off-campus International Houses near campus or in Xindian District with one Taiwanese or international student roommate, or a local homestay family. Students indicate their preferences in their application materials and are notified of their assignments during the pre-departure process, given the limited availability of each housing option. Additional detail about each housing option is provided in the pre-departure reference materials and online orientation.
Housing for academic year students between the fall and spring semesters is included in the academic year fee. Academic year students living with host families may need to switch to other accommodations during the break between semesters.
Meals are not included in the program fee and are the responsibility of the student. There are on-campus cafeterias and restaurants, as well as a wide choice of restaurants right outside the main campus gate.
Established in 1993, the CIEE Study Center in Taipei provides study abroad students the unique opportunity to learn intensive Mandarin Chinese language using traditional characters and the latest teaching pedagogies. In addition, students take a Chinese Language Practicum organized by CIEE, and an elective taught either in Chinese or English.
Students with near-native proficiency in Mandarin should be aware that their language ability may exceed the most advanced language courses offered on this program. These students should consider the Communications, Business, and Political Economy program, also at the CIEE Study Center at National Chengchi University in Taipei, which allows CIEE students to directly enroll at the host university.
Students attend morning or afternoon language classes three hours daily, Monday through Friday. The CIEE elective classes take place in 90-minute blocks two afternoons each week.
The NCCU Chinese Language Center academic calendar consists of three terms: fall, winter, and spring. Academic year students attend both fall and spring terms. Although extracurricular activities and personal travel contribute to the students’ overall experience in Taiwan, attendance in class is paramount. Any extended travel should take place before or after the program or during holidays.
NATURE OF CLASSES
Participants take language classes with CIEE and other international students, many of whom are from other parts of Asia. The language classes are small, and students are encouraged to participate actively. CIEE Chinese language elective classes are for CIEE study abroad students only, and the CIEE elective course taught in English is open to local Taiwanese students to further intercultural exchange. All language courses are taught using the traditional (zhengtizi) Chinese characters and the Hanyu Pinyin Romanization system, which is also commonly used in mainland China, although students have the option to learn the Zhuyin Fuhao (Bopomofo) system as well.
Chinese language classes are graded on the basis of a mid-term and final exam, quizzes, homework, and class participation. The elective course, taught in English, is graded on short papers and a final research project, as well as participation and attendance. Letter grades of A, A-, B+, B, B-, C+, C, D, and F and are assigned for all classes.
Students with permission from the resident director and home institution advisor prior to the start of the program, may undertake an organizational internship for credit. See the courses section for more detail.
CIEE COMMUNITY LANGUAGE COMMITMENT
As study abroad students gain competency in Chinese, resident staff encourage them to use their language skills in everyday settings. This fosters a learning community that contributes to both Chinese language proficiency and understanding of Taiwanese society.
CIEE CHINESE LANGUAGE ADVISORY COMMITTEE
The CIEE Chinese Language Advisory Committee (CCLAC) is comprised of specialists in the field of teaching Chinese as a second language and serves to promote the highest standards of education at the CIEE Study Centers in Greater China. Specifically, the committee advises CIEE administrators and language instructors on curriculum issues such as learning goals and objectives, instructional innovations, assessment of proficiency gains, program evaluation, and course articulation.
LANGUAGE OF INSTRUCTION
All Chinese language courses are taught by teaching professionals from the Chinese Language Center at National Chengchi University in coordination with the CIEE resident director, who also serves as an adjunct faculty member and graduate student advisor at the Chinese Language Center. The English language elective is taught by faculty from National Chengchi University.