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  • Locations: Beijing, China; Hangzhou, China; Shanghai, China
  • Program Terms: December
  • Click for Tuition + Program Fee: December
  • This program is currently not accepting applications.
Program Description:
China Great Wall
Will the 21st century will be "the Chinese century"?

Over the past few decades, China has become a global powerhouse by manufacturing for export. As “factory to the world,” China since the early 1980s has grown its economy to become the second largest binomial GDP and the largest by purchasing power parity (Source: IMF data). In several industries, for example mobile sharing platforms, robotics, AI (artificial intelligence), and renewable energy, China aims to be the world leader. At the same time, China’s “One Belt One Road” initiative is poised to project Chinese socio-political and economic power as a paramount leader connecting Asia, Africa and Europe. Inevitably, China’s cultural influence is also getting more notable around the world. One example is Chinese science fiction, which has attracted unprecedented attention outside China in recent years.

The program aims to help DePaul students develop a critical understanding of China’s cultural soft power and a sober view of the world’s future with China as an important player through engaging reading materials, class discussions, and a two-week visit in China. Topics to be covered in pre- and post- courses include China’s historical dynamics, cultural traditions, pop culture, science fiction, politics, and economy. The study abroad trip will begin in Shanghai where we will meet the academics and entrepreneurs to discuss contemporary society, science fiction, and the future “as seen from China.” We will explore some of the city’s newest technological innovations, the arts and literature, and architecture. From Shanghai, we will take day-trips to the nearby cities of Suzhou and Hangzhou to experience the interaction of China’s cultural tradition with modern innovations. In Beijing, we will explore a mega-city struggling with different possible urban futures. Our site visits in Beijing and the nearby “planned” city of Xiong’an will be linked to discussions with urban planners, artists, writers, scholars, and government officials.


Li Jin is an Associate Professor in the Department of Modern Languages where she also directs the Chinese Studies Program. Born and raised in mainland China, she obtained her Ph.D. in the US and has been working at DePaul for over 10 years. She teaches both Chinese language and culture courses at DePaul University.
John Shanahan is Associate Dean and Associate Professor of English. He has led two Study Abroad programs recently, and has traveled in China several times. His research centers on literature about technology and science fiction.

All students will be enrolled in the following 2 courses:
Course MOL323: China's Cultural Soft Power and its Future
Credits 4 credit hours
Term registered Fall 2018
Class meeting times Thursday evenings 6-9pm, LPC
Liberal Studies domain Social, Cultural, and Behavioral Inquiry
Taught by Li Jin
Course description Within three decades, China has transformed from an impoverished and self-secluded nation into a global powerhouse challenging the world’s status quo. This course will explore China’s cultural soft power by analyzing multiple aspects of Chinese culture and its contemporary society. Students will analyze comparative views analyzing and predicting China’s future. .
Course ENG 235: Science Fiction
Credits 4 credit hours
Term registered Winter 2019
Class meeting times To be determined
Liberal Studies domain Arts and Literature
Taught by John Shanahan
Course description This post-travel course centers on Liu Cixin’s award-winning science fiction trilogy Remembrance of Earth’s Past (2007-10) and SF works by Hao Jingfang, Chen Qiufan, and others. It follows up on site visits and conversations with authors and others while in China.
Additional course information Winter Quarter 2019, evening course, and will have an online component linked to a Chinese university class.
  Please note that although some courses are registered in a particular term, some coursework or final assignments may be due in a different term. E.g. Course registered in winter quarter, but coursework is due in spring quarter once the travel component of the program is complete.

Hotel accommodations in Shanghai and Beijing.

All students participating in study abroad will be charged both tuition (billed at the regular DePaul tuition rate, based on the number of credits enrolled) and a program fee. Please read the program fee details carefully to understand exactly what is included, as this can vary from program to program. If the program fee is posted, be sure to note whether the fee is current or from a previous year (past program fees may serve as a guide until the current program fee is available). If the current program fee has not yet been posted, please check back closer to the application deadline. Please also note the withdrawal policy.

DePaul offers several types of scholarships for students studying abroad, and students should visit the scholarship page early in the application process for information on eligibility and deadlines.


If you are planning to study abroad and do not have a passport, apply for one immediately. Some programs require students to obtain student visas. In that case, contact the country's local consulate or embassy for up-to-date instructions. As of this publication, students traveling with US passports on the China: Imagining the Future With China program DO NOT need a visa. Please note that visa requirements can change quickly. Study Abroad will update this website to reflect changes as they become available.

Questions about this program? Contact your study abroad advisor, Erica Rideaux at or visit during open advising hours.

DePaul University does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, national origin, religion, sex, or handicap in admissions, employment, or the provision of services. Inquiries regarding this policy should be addressed to the Director of Human Resources, 1 East Jackson Avenue, Chicago, Illinois 60604.

Circumstances, such as an unexpected event abroad or a curriculum change, may require DePaul University to make changes to the program. DePaul University reserves the right to cancel or alter programs and courses without notice.

Dates / Deadlines:

Thank you for your interest in this program! We are not currently accepting applications. In general, applications open about 6 months before program application deadlines.

This program is currently not accepting applications.