Last Updated on August 28, 2023
Choosing to study in China for an MBA or business masters is becoming an increasingly attractive prospect for international students. The country boasts one of the most dynamic and fastest growing economies in the world, with mega-cities like global financial and business centers Shanghai and Beijing.
China is progressively becoming a tech start-up hub, with business schools like China Europe International Business School (CEIBS) having start-up incubators where students can develop their ideas and connect with local and international venture capitalists.
According to a 2018 study published in the Journal of Studies in International Education, the number of international students in China has grown more than tenfold since 1995, from 36,855 to 422,773.
Students are often drawn to China because of the relatively low cost of living (particularly when compared with much of Europe and the US), and the availability of scholarships. The study notes that the Chinese government provides the equivalent of US$300 million in scholarships to international students each year (particularly to students from developing nations).
So, what can you expect from choosing China for your post-graduate business studies, and where are the best places to go? Read on to find out…
What are the benefits of choosing to study in China?
Business masters and MBA programs at Chinese schools facilitate East-West co-operation. Take CEIBS, one of the top business schools in the world, whose motto is ‘China Depth, Global Breadth’.
The chance to learn Mandarin is one of the greatest benefits of an MBA education in China, especially as Mandarin speakers make up a fifth of the global population.
CEIBS requires non-native speakers to attend a summer course in Mandarin before starting their MBA studies, despite their MBA course being taught primarily in English. This cross-cultural linguistic interaction is of great benefit to both local and international students.
The most valuable skill an international student gains from undertaking an MBA in China is learning how to work with all-Chinese teams. During group work at CEIBS, one or two international students will be placed in teams with two to three Chinese nationals to facilitate this learning process.
Western and Chinese approaches to teamwork and conflict management can be very different. For example, American business culture often relies on direct, blunt communication whereas Chinese business culture tends to favor indirect communication, respect and deference. Therefore, students will learn valuable skills of making sure that all team members’ opinions and feelings are considered.
Alumni networks at Chinese schools are extensive, not least because of China’s huge population. Another major benefit for MBA students learning and working in China is they have access to multiple firms across Asia, including companies like Huawei and Alibaba.
The positives to studying in China don’t end there; The Financial Times estimates post-graduate salary after an MBA at a top Chinese business school like CEIBS can be US$160,000 – a whopping 155 percent salary hike.
What are the best business schools in China?
China has no shortage of great business schools, with three featuring in the QS World University Rankings: Global MBA Rankings 2019: CEIBS placed 25th, plus Shanghai Jiao Tong University’s Antai College of Economics and Management and Sun Yat-sen Business School. CEIBS is also ranked 28th in the world for EMBA studies.
Joint EMBA programs featuring Chinese schools and campuses were extremely popular in the QS Executive MBA Rankings 2019: Joint Programs, perhaps highlighting this shift in students wishing to understand both Eastern and Western business practices. Joint EMBA programs with Chinese elements include:
- TRIUM (London, New York, Paris and Shanghai)
- Tsinghua/INSEAD (Beijing, Singapore, Fontainebleau and Abu Dhabi)
- Washington/Fudan (Shanghai)
- Mannheim/Tongji (Mannheim and Shanghai)
- BI Norwegian/Fudan (Shanghai)
- CENTRUM Catolica/Tulane (New Orleans, Shanghai, Barcelona, Lima)
Why should you consider Hong Kong?
Students wanting to get a taste of Chinese business education could consider the numerous top ranked business schools in Hong Kong, a special administrative region of China. The business culture is very similar, and business schools attract students from the Chinese mainland as well as further afield. Hong Kong is also one of the world’s most significant financial centers, with the highest Financial Development Index score globally.
Four schools in Hong Kong are included in the Global MBA Rankings 2019: The University of Hong Kong, HKUST Business School, The Chinese University of Hong Kong (CUHK) and City University of Hong Kong. Hong Kong also features in the EMBA rankings, with CUHK ranked 24th globally. There are a number of joint EMBA programs with semesters in Hong Kong, including the number 1 ranked Kellogg/HKUST joint EMBA program.
Business Schools in China – Management & MBA Programs
. HKUST Business SchoolCourses / ProgramsHKUST Business School, located in Clear Water Bay, Hong Kong, China, is a leading business school offering a variety of undergraduate degree programs that provide the best preparation for tomorrow’s business leaders. HKUST Business School’s undergraduate programs offer a well-rounded training, achieved through a balance of academic and non-academic programs. Weaving through these is a strong element of internationalization.
2. Cheung Kong Graduate School Of BusinessCourses / ProgramsCheung Kong Graduate School Of Business (CKGSB) is China’s first private, non-profit,and independent business school offering degree and non-degree management education programs at graduate level and above.
Headquartered in Beijing with campuses in Shanghai and Guangzhou, Cheung Kong offers MBA, EMBA, and executive education programs. Our mission is to generate world-class insights on management theory and practice and to develop leaders for a new era of global business in China and beyond. The school was founded in 2002 by Li Ka-shing, Asia’s most successful entrepreneur.
The Cheung Kong MBA program is based in Beijing, while the Executive MBA course is offered in Beijing, Shanghai, and Guangzhou.
The CKGSB MBA program aims at building a solid foundation in developing future business leaders with a strong sense of social responsibility. Our MBA Program is recognized by students and corporate recruiters alike, as a world-class program in China.
Master of Business Administration (MBA) Programs:
– 12-month / 1-year intensive MBA program (taught in English)
– 20-month Executive MBA program (EMBA taught in Chinese)
– 2-year Finance MBA program (taught in Chinese)
Executive Education Programs:
– Executive Development Programs (EDP taught in English & Chinese
. HKUST Business SchoolCourses / ProgramsHKUST (Hong Kong University of Science and Technology) Business School, located on the Clear Water Bay peninsula, Hong Kong, China, is an accredited Business School recognized as one of the youngest and most respected in Asia. The School offers full and part time Master of Business Administration (MBA) programs along with two Executive MBA programs, one in partnership with the Kellogg School of Management.
At HKUST, we provide a meeting point for minds from East and West. Hong Kong’s position as one of the world’s leading financial centers and a springboard to Mainland China offers excellent opportunities for our students to forge further international ties.
Master of Business Administration Programs:
– Full Time MBA
– Part Time MBA
– MBA in Shenzhen
– Kellogg-HKUST EMBA
– HKUST EMBA. IFA Paris Fashion School, ShanghaiCourses / ProgramsConveniently situated in Shanghai, International Fashion Academy (IFA) Paris is the leading fashion school in China, providing undergraduate and graduate fashion degree programs to students from around the world. In partnership with our school in Paris, we offer quality MBA programs in Luxury Brand Management, Fashion Business and Global Fashion Media. The language of instruction of all our programs is English.
IFA Paris also offers MBA / Master’s degree programs in Fashion Business and Luxury Brands Management in collaboration with POLIMODA, Italy’s top fashion design and fashion marketing school. These programs require study in Shanghai, Florence and Paris, with Dual Degrees awarded on graduation.
Students join our graduate programs from all over the world to discover an academic atmosphere that’s professional and focused on academic goals and industry projects. IFA graduate programs provide exceptional opportunities for students to develop their professional network by offering numerous and valuable interactions with leaders in the industry. IFA Paris proves its dedication to fashion by using the best professional instructors from France, the US, and other international countries.
In 2014, IFA Paris will offer 9 scholarships at postgraduate level and 5 scholarships at undergraduate level for programs in our Shanghai and Paris schools. Contact us today for more information on how to apply for this excellent opportunity.
1-Year MBA Programs
-MBA Luxury Brand Mgmt: 30 wks Shanghai/10 wks Paris
-Dual MBA/Masters in Luxury Brands Mgmt or Fashion Business in collaboration with Polimoda: 30 wks Shanghai/ 8 wks Florence/ 2 wks Paris
-MBA Fashion Business: 40 wks Paris or 30 wks Paris/10 wks Shanghai
-MBA Global Fashion Media: 36 wks Paris/12 wks Shanghai/12 wks Capstone Project
-MBA Cosmetics, Beauty & Fragrances: 24 wks Shanghai/24 wks Paris/12 wks Capstone Project
-Fashion Design & Technology: 3 yrs
-Fashion Marketing: 3 yrs with 10 wks in Shanghai in Yr
. Next Step Connections LtdCourses / ProgramsNext Step Connections organizes year-round professional internship programs in Shanghai and Hong Kong. Next Step Connections organizes year-round professional internship programs in Shanghai and Hong Kong, China and has now also developed a month-long summer program for high school students. As part of our commitment to help the next generation of future leaders take their first steps into the professional world, we have created the NSC Young Entrepreneur program in Shanghai for overseas high school students aged between 15 and 18 years old. The language of instruction is English and Mandarin classes are included in the program.
Hosted at the premises of a prominent Chinese business university in Shanghai, the NSC young entrepreneur program offers you a unique opportunity to develop entrepreneurial skills, business acumen and Chinese language abilities at an early age.
– Four-week NSC Young Entrepreneur Summer program for high school students aged between 15-18. Shanghai Jiao Tong University Antai College of Economics and ManagementCourses / ProgramsShanghai Jiao Tong University’s Antai College of Economics and Management International MBA is the only IMBA program in China to be triply accredited by AASCB, EQUIS, and the Association of MBAs. Antai is located in the heart of Shanghai, China’s undisputed business capital, and is consistently ranked among the Top 5 MBA programs in China.
Classes are taught completely in English, with weekly Chinese classes provided free of charge. Professors come from top universities and corporations from around the world, providing an international perspective with a focus on China. About half of our IMBA students are from China, while the rest are from other countries around the world, enabling a truly global interactive classroom environment.
The IMBA program is a two year full-time program. Academic clubs and forums provide regular opportunities for students to expand their network, and learn about current business issues in China. Additionally, Antai’s Career Development Center provides students with career guidance and opportunities for internships and full-time employment based on students’ interests and backgrounds.
– Two-year International Master of Business Administration (IMBA) degree program taught entirely in English.
Subjects include: Financial Accounting;
Corporate Finance; Managerial Economics; Information Technology; International Marketing; International Human Resource Management; International Business Law; Entrepreneurship Management; Risk Management; Logistics; E-Commerce; Project Management; Managerial Ethics among others. The School of Business (RBS), Renmin University Of ChinaCourses / ProgramsThe School of Business (RBS), Renmin University Of China is a first-class base for business administration education in Beijing. At RBS we provide high-quality Master of Business Administration (MBA) courses to foster tomorrow’s business leaders including the International MBA (IMBA). The IMBA program is a two-year full time study program. Students who meet the graduation requirements will be awarded MBA degree by RUC. All the courses of the IMBA are taught in English.
International Master of Business Administration (IMBA):
– Campus based
– 2 Years Full Time
– Taught in English
– Executive MBA (EMBA)
– Full & Part Time MBA’s taught in ChineseBeijing International MBA at Peking University(BiMBA)Courses / ProgramsBeijing International MBA at Peking University is the first joint international MBA program in Beijing approved by the Chinese government. The China Center for Economic Research (CCER) at Peking University was founded in August 1994, as an experiment in new methods of research and education in China.
CCER brought together a group of well-trained scholars in the fields of economics and management, from China and around the world, to make contributions to education and research at Peking University, to foster economic reform and development in China, and to contribute to the development of modern economic and management theories.
Full time MBA Program in Business Management; Part time MBA Program in Business Management; Executive MBA Program in Business Management.View this School9. Jinan UniversityCourses / ProgramsJinan University, located in Guagzhou, China, is reputed as one of the Top institutions of Higher education for Overseas Chinese. Jinan University offers two Master of Business Administration programs, the Sino-international MBA (SiMBA), and the part-time MBA. The Sino-international MBA (SiMBA) is a full-time program of two years for mainland and overseas students taught in English. The Part-time MBA program is 3 years in duration and is taught in Chinese. Jinan University possesses a team of well-known professors, perfect curriculum and famous majors. The university is in a lively learning atmosphere and the classes are fresh and exciting.
Sino-international MBA (SiMBA):
– Full-time program
– 2 years Duration
– Taught in English
– 3 years in Duration
– Taught in ChineseView this School10. China Europe International Business School (CEIBS)Courses / ProgramsChina Europe International Business School (CEIBS), with campuses in Shanghai, Shenzhen and Beijing, China, is one of the top 30 business schools in the world offering MBA, EMBA and Open Enrolment Executive Education Programs. The school’s main objective is to contribute to the economic development of China by offering its students a thorough understanding of the latest international management knowledge and practices coupled with clear China expertise.
MBA (Master of Business Administration):
– 18 month duration
– Full-time programme
– Taught in English
EMBA (Executive MBA)
– 24 month Programme
China has a number of well-structured and designed business schools. For those who are looking for an opportunity to attend any of these, it is important to consider which school to attend. Many of the best Chinese schools for business are located in Beijing, though other options exist throughout the country. Some of the largest business schools in the area include Peking University’s Guanghau School of Management, Cheung Kong Graduate School of Business, and the Beijing International MBA school. Attending Business Schools in China Most students enroll in bachelor’s degree programs initially and then move into graduate school to earn an MBA. Options include the two-year full time, international degree, a dual degree (a common option in this highly competitive area) and an executive MBA, designed for leadership position education. Education can take between two and six years to complete. However, some one year programs are available as well. Most programs provide a wide range of options. MBA degrees in China often offer a focus on areas such as marketing, international business studies, and economics, though management, human resources, and engineering are also topics for study. The costs of these programs differ significantly from one school to the next, however it tends to be more expensive for international students. What Are the Options for International Students? International students are often welcomed at business schools in China. Competition for these positions can be very hard to obtain. It is important for students to apply to the business school they select directly. If accepted, it is then necessary to apply for a student visa to study in the school. This process can take three or more months in some cases. It is necessary to apply for school as soon as possible, usually four or more months prior to attending whenever possible. The opportunities for students who enroll and complete an MBA in China range widely. China is growing and flourishing in terms of its economy and there are positions available, including those with large companies with international opportunities.