Tsinghua University Summer Program

Summer Service Learning Program (SSLP)


The Summer Service Learning Program (SSLP) brings Chinese and international undergraduates together to combat poverty issues in rural China by spreading access to high-quality educational and training resources. This unique and enriching opportunity allows students to develop and implement a service learning project in rural China. Projects include teaching English, doing poverty alleviation research, giving lectures on cultural communications, and visiting local villages.

Video log following the experiences of three program participants

Beijing, China and rural areas in various provinces

Language of Instruction: English


ISEP-Direct Summer for all ISEP member students    


Note: This program is not offered for credit—no transcripts provided. Students receive a certificate of participation; thus any academic credit awarded is entirely up to the home institution.

Participants attend an orientation program at Tsinghua University in Beijing to meet their Chinese partners, learn about China's poverty alleviation issues, and develop plans to implement their service projects. Projects commonly involve teaching English in local schools or computer training. Participants then travel in teams to sites in rural areas throughout China where they reside for two weeks. Transportation is organized and paid for by Tsinghua University. Each group consists of approximately two or three international students, five Tsinghua students, and a faculty advisor. All Chinese participants speak English, and knowledge of Chinese is not a requirement for US student participation.

Chinese Language and Culture Program (CLCP)
Dates: approximately 1 week prior to the start of the SSLP. Pre-session cost includes tuition, course materials, housing, meals, and excursions.

The CLCP will be held in Xi'an, Shaanxi Province, home of the Terracotta Warriors. Participants will visit cultural locations in and around the city, attend lectures on history and culture, and take language lessons with discussion time in the evenings. (No transcript provided—students must arrange an independent study with their home university in order to get credit—see your ISEP coordinator for details.)


The ideal candidate will have proven experience or interest in development issues, as well as exposure to international travel. Students with a background in Asian studies are preferred. Students must be of junior or senior status with good academic standing. Please use the ISEP-Summer/Short Term Programs application to apply.


I-to-I applicants who are not native English speakers must submit the ISEP Language Proficiency Report.


July 7-26, 2016 (pre-session: June 30-July 7)


March 15, 2016


$900-$1000 (without pre-session)
$2,000 - $2,500 (includes pre-session)


During orientation in Beijing, students are housed at the Overseas Student Dormitory on the Tsinghua University main campus. While completing the service learning projects in rural China, students stay in local accommodations arranged by Tsinghua University. Tuition, board, and lodging are included in the program fee.


Students may sign up for an optional excursion to the Great Wall for an additional fee.


Tsinghua University, founded in 1911, is one of China's premier universities and is widely recognized for its engineering and applied sciences programs. It is commonly compared to MIT in the United States. The School of Continuing Education at Tsinghua University has been collaborating with the Wang Foundation since 2006 to support poverty alleviation through international education and service learning. The mission of the Wang Foundation is to build cross-cultural knowledge and create global citizens. The Tsinghua SSLP is also offered through the generous support of the Tseng Hin Pei Charity Fund.


Tsinghua University is located in northwest Beijing, near the Summer Palace and Peking University. The picturesque campus has stunning modern architecture and hosts several royal gardens dating back to the Qing Dynasty. Public transportation is convenient and inexpensive. Upon completing orientation, students are dispersed to 30 different locations. Geography, climate, and general living situations will vary greatly between placements.


Please consider the following requirements when filling out the online application :

Participant Profile: REQUIRED
Host Request List:
º Placement: SELECT "Summer"
º Site: SELECT "ISEP Direct"
º Country: SELECT "China"
º Institution: SELECT "Tsinghua University"
º Program Type: If enrolling only in the SSLP, SELECT "Regular University Courses". If enrolling in both the SSLP and the pre-session, SELECT "pre-session".
Course Request List: For Course Name, enter "Summer Service Learning Program" and click the disc icon.
Language Proficiency: Are you planning to study at a host program where the primary language of instruction is different than your native language? SELECT "No."
Personal Statement: REQUIRED
Academic References: ONE REQUIRED
Transcript: REQUIRED

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