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  • Alicia Sigmon

5 Reasons Chinese Students Aren’t Choosing Your School

You’ve gone to webinars, attended what feels like every virtual fair, connected with agents, and networked with industry leaders. So why are Chinese students still not choosing your school?


College students at an outdoor party under a pergola with string lights
When Chinese students can envision themselves on your campus, excelling academically and forming lasting friendships, they are more likely to choose your school. | Photo by Samantha Gades on Unsplash


 

For Chinese students to choose your school, they need to feel that you truly understand their unique needs and preferences. It’s not enough to showcase impressive academics or a beautiful campus; you must address the specific barriers and misconceptions that might be turning them away. For example, many Chinese students worry about language barriers, post-graduation job prospects, and fitting into the campus culture. Misunderstandings about your programs or a lack of accessible information can also deter them. By tackling these issues head-on, you can make your school stand out to the right-fit Chinese students.

 


1.   You Don’t Have a Chinese Website


In China, admission information is blocked on many sites by the firewall, so students are unable to view part if not all of your website. Even if students can view part of your website, partially blocked websites appear less trustworthy to Chinese students. Students also have to rely on their English skills or faulty translations, leading to misunderstandings and confusion.  


We understand that not every school has the time or resources required to create a Chinese site, so we’ve made it easy for you to connect to Chinese students. Creating an eduFair e-booth allows students to access 100% of your information. eduFair makes your information accessible to Chinese students in English from your side to make editing content easy. For students and parents, the titles and headings are in Chinese for easy scrolling, and information is presented visually where possible. The app has also been developed to be compatible with Chinese translation plugins.



2.   Students Can’t Envision Themselves on Your Campus


You can have a beautiful campus, a high-ranking, and industry-leader professors, but if students can’t picture themselves on your campus, they’re going to look elsewhere. Here are the most common reasons Chinese students are not feeling an emotional connection to your school: 


  • Students can’t access your videos: Most video content is unavailable from within China. However, Chinese students are seeking out an on-the-ground perspective of what their day-to-day will look like on your campus. All photo and video content on eduFair is available with Chinese internet - no VPN required!

  • Lack of connections and representation: Recruitment in China can be tricky, especially for schools without strong national or international recognition. Chinese students may feel disconnected from campuses that don’t have strong national or international recognition. To address this challenge, actively engage with students on platforms like eduFair for direct interactions. Joining a trusted and well-known Chinese app can help bridge the gap and develop trust with Chinese students.

  • No student-made content: Hearing about other international students' experiences on your campus is a major factor for prospective students. Leverage word-of-mouth to help students identify with your student experience and access trusted resources. Student-made content gives Chinese students a real look into what it’s like as an international student on your campus and helps them feel a personal connection to your school. A lack of these firsthand accounts can make it difficult for students to picture themselves on your campus.

 


3.   They Don’t Know Your Unique Advantages


There are many types of schools and programs that Chinese students may overlook or not be aware of, like art schools, community colleges, and specialized graduate programs to name a few. What are the benefits of your type of school, and what makes you stand out from others?

 

  • Community Colleges: Community colleges offer Chinese students a cost-effective and flexible pathway to achieving their educational goals. They provide smaller class sizes for more personal interactions and learning support and allow students to save money while completing general education requirements. Community colleges may also have transfer agreements with prestigious universities, making it easier for students to get into their top-choice schools. Let students know about your transfer opportunities and unique classroom benefits.

  • Art Schools: With growing interest in art education among Chinese students, art schools offer unique opportunities for cultural immersion and creative development. Art schools abroad provide a break from the rote learning prevalent in Chinese education, fostering critical thinking, personal expression, and hands-on learning. Highlight your school's specialized art programs, renowned faculty, industry connections, and opportunities for cultural immersion in vibrant artistic communities. Showcase how your school supports artistic growth and career development through partnerships and practical experiences.

 


An intern and a businessman shaking hands in front of a large building.
Chinese students want to know what career opportunities your school offers. Let them know about your unique internships, research opportunities, and company partnerships to ease those concerns and pique their interest.

























4.   Lack of Job Prospects


Just because you’re not in a major city or you’re not a huge university doesn’t mean students won’t have opportunities to work outside the cafeteria, but you need to help them realize what opportunities you have to offer.

 

Chinese students may have the misconception that only big cities and top 100 universities offer big opportunities. To position yourself competitively for Chinese students, highlight the following:


  • Less Competition: Chinese students often associate bigger cities with more opportunities, but smaller cities can provide similar opportunities with less competition. Let students know about your company partnerships, internship opportunities, and alumni success to ease their concerns about competition.

  • Specialized Programs: Chinese students want to know that their major will lead to a profitable and rewarding career. Let them know what specialized programs you have that are unique to your school and how alumni have leveraged those programs to succeed in the workforce.

  • Job-Search Support for International Students: International students want to know that you’ll support them in their job search, and not just within your country. Do you offer resume writing workshops? Interview coaching? Co-operative education programs, field research opportunities, or research positions? Let Chinese students know how you help them find a job so that they feel confident in your ability to support them at the beginning of their careers.

 


5.   Language


A lot of Chinese students disqualify themselves or are intimidated by language requirements. Conditional acceptance isn’t common in China, so students and parents may not understand that this is an option. If your school offers conditional acceptance for students who don't meet the language requirements but meet other admissions criteria, ensure this is clearly communicated.

 

Pathway and language programs provide English training, test preparation, and university foundation programs to set Chinese students up for success in their international education. For Chinese students who need extra support, these programs can help them get into their top-choice schools. These programs not only increase graduation rates but also improve students’ confidence and help them adapt to their host country’s culture.

 

To connect with Chinese students, highlight success stories of international students students who have benefited from your ESL or intensive English programs. Provide clear examples and testimonials to demonstrate the pathway from conditional acceptance to full enrollment.

 

 

Conclusion

 

Finding the best-fit Chinese students for your school starts with understanding their unique needs and preferences. By ensuring that your website is accessible in China, showcasing your campus life, and highlighting your school's unique academic and career opportunities, you can make a strong impression and address their concerns and questions. By connecting with Chinese students and providing them with the information to make an educated decision about their education, you can help the right-fit Chinese students find and choose your school.

  


 

 

 

ABOUT EDUFAIR CHINA 


eduFair China is a free website and app connecting Chinese students with international institutions and first-hand resources about studying abroad. We aim to give students a more empowered approach to international education so that they can succeed during their journey abroad.


Our platform features more than 1,200 organizations and reaches millions of students across China.


Click here to learn more about getting your institution online and how eduFair can help you reach students in China.

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