Chinese universities are considering a significant increase in international tuition fees, potentially up to five times their current cost. This move is aimed at making these institutions more competitive with foreign schools.
The Beijing Institute of Technology conducted a study that revealed students choose China for their education due to the low cost. However, a substantial fee increase could provide universities with additional funds to reinvest in infrastructure, research, and other aspects of the educational system, according to Grace Zhu, China Branch Director at BONARD.
The study from the Beijing Institute of Technology suggested that international tuition fees could be increased by up to five times their existing price. This is being proposed to help Chinese universities compete with colleges abroad and to enhance the quality of Chinese higher education.
Currently, international students pay around 20,000 yuan per year ($2,807) to study in Chinese universities. The research suggests that this could be increased to 100,000 yuan($14,000). The Chinese government is reportedly giving the study “serious consideration”.
Grace Zhu, China Branch Director at BONARD, stated that the move could potentially bring in more revenue for Chinese universities. These funds could be used to reinvest in infrastructure, research, and other aspects of the educational system. This could help attract more students in the long term by improving the quality of education and facilities.
However, she also warned it may cause China to lose students in the short term. One of the reasons why many students from countries like Pakistan and Thailand choose to study in China is because of the relatively low cost of education compared to other destinations. If fees are raised too high, it could make it difficult for some students to afford studying in China.
China’s drive to attract overseas students has been ongoing as part of the country’s Belt and Road Initiative, which has seen China invest in global infrastructure and engagement, as well as offering scholarships to students from target countries.
Zhu suggested a gradual increase in fees, which would help students adjust to the changes while allowing Chinese institutions to compete with top-ranked universities in other countries.