Universiteit Leiden

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Yenching Academy of Peking University

The Yenching Academy offers international students a fellowship to pursue a Master of Arts degree programme in China Studies. The programme is open for students from all programmes and faculties.

1 December
Target group
Countries/ nationalities
Destination country: China
Scholarship type
Archaeology, Humanities, Governance and Global Affairs, Law, Social and Behavioural Sciences, Science

Yenching Academy Information Session

When & where: Wednesday 14 November | Room 3.16 of the Leiden University College building (301 Anna van Buerenplein, The Hague)

Please register

Eligibility requirements

  • Minimum of a Bachelor’s degree in any field, awarded no later than 31 August in the year in which you wish to enroll
  • Outstanding academic record
  • Record of extracurricular achievement, community engagement and social responsibility;
  • Indications of leadership potential
  • English proficiency demonstrated through one of the following scores*: TOEFL: 100; IELTS: 7; Cambridge: 180; CEFR: C1.

Preference is given to candidates who are 25 years old or younger on 31 August in the year in which they wish to commence studying. For students from countries where military service is mandatory, the age preference is 27 years old or younger.

*Native English speakers and those enrolled in, or graduated from, a primarily English-taught degree programme are not required to provide this documentation.

What qualities should a Yenching Scholar possess?
The Yenching Academy seeks talented, high-potential individuals whose collective diversity will create a rich learning and living environment. The best way to understand what Yenching is looking for in a candidate is to review the bios of previous scholars, available on their website. Note that candidates should have a strong interest in China, but knowledge of the Chinese language is not essential.

Scholarship or loan amount

The Yenching Academy provides a generous postgraduate scholarship that covers tuition fees, a travel stipend for one round-trip journey between each scholar’s base city and Beijing, accommodation, and living costs on Peking University's campus.

Application process

  • Complete the Yenching Academy 2019 application form
    Note: If you wish to apply for a different academic year do not use this form. Instead contact the Study Abroad Team for further information.
  • Ask two referees to complete the Recommender form and send it directly to: Studyabroad@sea.leidenuniv.nl (mentioning Yenching Academy and your name).
  • Write a personal statement. Your statement should include a personal introduction and the reasons why you wish to be a Yenching Scholar. Written in English, it should not exceed 750 words. Use your full name + Personal Statement as the document name.
  • Before 1 December: send your complete 'Application Package' (see below) to: Studyabroad@sea.leidenuniv.nl, mentioning ‘Yenching Academy’ in the subject line.
Application package
  • Completed application form
  • Personal statement (750 words or less)
  • Curriculum Vitae
  • Official transcript(s)*
  • Diploma(s) or Certificate(s) of Enrollment*
  • Two letters of recommendation
  • International English proficiency test score (at least IELTS Academic 7/TOEFL 100/Cambridge 180/CEFR C1)**

*If official university documents are in languages other than English or Chinese, please upload copies of the original documents plus certified English translations. This requirement also applies to diplomas issued in Latin.

** Native English speakers and students/alumni of primarily English-taught degree programmes are not required to provide English proficiency test scores.

Selection process

Leiden Univerity will pre-select 3 to 5 students and nominate them, by 15 December, as Leiden University candidates for the Yenching Academy. Once nominees’ applications are complete, the  Yenching Academy will consider them for finalist interviews. They will contact candidates directly to schedule interviews in the winter or early spring. Most will be held via Skype. Please note that while no university can be guaranteed places, the Yenching Academy does give extra consideration to nominees. Note that acceptances may be issued on a rolling basis. The majority of admissions decisions will be made in March 2019.  

Specific information

Programme duration
The Yenching Academy programme is two years in duration. However, international students are only required to stay in Beijing for the first year. All scholars in good standing have the option to extend the fellowship for a second year, if they wish to remain in Beijing. Those who leave the campus after one year may complete their theses and thesis defense via Skype.

Residential College
The Yenching Academy classrooms and offices are located in the Jing Yuan Courtyard in the heart of the Peking University campus. Yenching Scholars and visiting faculty will reside nearby in dormitory facilities that will feature common lounges, a library, and cafeteria.

For more information go to: www.yenchingacademy.org.

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