VIII-2 Question: China's rapid economic development and a more influential status in the world allow more foreign students to study Chinese in the country, and make it more attractive to foreign students. What are the major advantages of studying Chinese in its birthplace?
A: The reason why China is trying to be the most attractive destination for foreign students is as follow. First and the foremost, China has been politically stable, economically booming and has enjoyed a high employment rate in recent years. Secondly, over the past five decades, a comparatively student-oriented education pattern has emerged. China's higher education, which has trained capable personnel in sci-tech, education, diplomatic and management fields for partner countries, particularly developing ones, is well recognized by overseas universities and their students. Thirdly, the Chinese are willing to offer foreign students better boarding conditions, faculty resources, medical insurance and study environment in the future.
China is eager to play a bigger role and enhance the reputation of its top-notch universities, instead of merely making profits by receiving more overseas students. And towards this purpose, China charges these students lower tuition fees than the international level averagely. Statistics show that in 2005, foreign students in China numbered 141,087, among them 133,869 self-funded. Yet this figure comprises a small fraction of the overall student population, given the 190 million Chinese enrolled in universities in the same year.
Hence, for a period after that, China will aim more at enlargement of study programs of a higher level and better quality. More universities or colleges will be able to add Chinese courses to their curricula, and affiliated institutes abroad will maintain their momentum in development. Reforms on school management will be further stressed to guarantee safety of foreign students living outside of the campus. Financial aids, scholarship, medical insurance and other social services will be provided to them.