FAQs

Provided below are answers to additional questions that you might have about Tsinghua School of Economics and Management. We hope that this list, along with the information we have provided in other areas of this website, effectively addresses most of your questions. If you do not find an answer to your question, please contact us at intlmbaadm@sem.tsinghua.edu.cn  and you will receive our reply as soon as possible.

 

1. Application

What is GMAT test? Where can I obtain more details about GMAT?
The Graduate Management Admission Test (GMAT) consists of four parts: Analytical Writing Assessment, Quantitative Section, Verbal Section and Integrated Reasoning Section. All the four sections are administered in a computer-adaptive format. The official test report should be received by the end of May for guaranteed review. GMAT scores are valid for five years. Scores from tests taken earlier than this will not be accepted. Applicants may elect to take the GMAT more than once; however, the highest GMAT score will be considered. The GMAT Program Code for the Tsinghua-MIT Global Program is VH0-JJ-18; The GMAT Program Code for the Tsinghua MBA Program (Part-Time) is VH0-JJ-21. 
To obtain more information and register for the test, visit www.mba.com.
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Can I take GRE test instead of GMAT test?

Yes, GRE score is accepted as the substitute of GMAT score as an admissions requirement. GRE Designated Institution (DI) Code for Tsinghua MBA Programs: 3856. To Obtain more information and register for the GRE test, visit: www.ets.org/gre/. 

What if I can't take GRE or GMAT test?

International Candidates or Candidates from HK/Macau/Taiwan can use the Tsinghua MBA Alternative Entrance Exam as a substitute for the GMAT or GRE for admission into our MBA Programs. The test is similar to the GMAT in that it is a multiple choice math, sentence correction critical thinking, reading comprehension test with an analytical writing component. Testing times are the days of round 2-4 interviews. Registration for the test is also free of charge to prospective students. Please contact us for sample test via intlmbaadm@sem.tsinghua.edu.cn

2. Recommendation Letter

Is there a template for the recommendation letter?
Yes. It is recommended but not required. You can download it
here.

Should my recommendation be from work or from a professor?
The most useful recommendations are those from individuals who are able to speak with certainty about your professional and/or academic achievements and potential. It is important, for those who are currently employed, that at least one of your evaluators be someone in a position to judge your professional performance.

Should my recommenders directly send the recommendation letters to your admission office? 
No. An email invitation for recommendation will be sent to your references by online application system automatically when you leave the email contacts of the references in the system. The references will complete the  procedure by uploading their recommendation letters online.

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3. Work Experience

I am still an undergraduate student. How long do I need to work before applying?
Tsinghua MBA students are accepted based on a comprehensive review of their qualifications instead of minimum performance standards. We do not require a minimum level of work experience for international students.

What is the average length of work experience?
The average number of years of full-time work experience for the class entering in fall 2011 is approximately 5 years.

What is the average age of the MBA class?
At the time of enrollment for the class entering in fall 2011, the median age was approximately 29.

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4. Admission Information

How many people applied last year? How many were admitted?
Of the approximately 3000 applications received last year for the MBA (including Chinese applicants and international applicants), about 420 were admitted and matriculated.

Are certain parts of the admission requirement weighted more than others?
No single characteristic in the application is more important than any other. An area of weakness—for example, a low score on the GMAT—may be successfully offset by strengths in other areas.

Does SEM have rolling admissions? Are there advantages to applying early?
Yes. Applications are received throughout the year until late March or early April of the following year. Two or three interview sessions will be arranged. There are no competitive advantages to applying early, though we encourage our prospective students to apply in the 1st round.

Is there any academic preparation required prior to applying/enrolling? Do I need an undergraduate degree in business to apply?
The SEM welcomes applications from college graduates coming from all areas of concentration, but applicants should have an undergraduate degree or equivalent prior to the start of the program. However, if applicants have never completed formal courses in differential and integral calculus and in economic theory, both macro- and microeconomics, they might be required to take pre-course two weeks before the first semester begins.

Is there a preferred type of job before business school?
No. There are as many routes to business school as there are students. If you follow your abilities and aspirations, you are heading in a good direction.

What are the admission criteria?
We value the following characteristics in our candidates: leadership potential; analytical skills; logical reasoning and innovative ability; independent thinking; ambition; and social responsibility.

What is your deferral policy?
Students are allowed to apply for a deferral of at most one year in the event of an illness.

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5. Visits & Interviews

What is the policy for visiting the SEM?
You are always welcome to visit our School and attend our Open Day to get more information about our program. Please contact us in advance if you plan to visit our office or audit any classes. You can email our Student Ambassadors at mba_ambassador@sem.tsinghua.edu.cn.

What is the interview policy?
We will selectively interview individuals who submit an application to the SEM. These interviews will be by invitation and at our initiative only; not all applicants will be interviewed. An invitation to an interview should be interpreted neither positively nor negatively in regards to one's admission status. It simply means we are seeking additional clarification of your goals and professional and personal attributes.

When and how is the interview conducted?
Potential candidates will be invited to Beijing in late January or early April for an interview at our school (video or phone interview can be arranged). The interview provides an opportunity for the faculty to evaluate the analytical and interpersonal abilities of applicants, as well as their managerial and leadership potential. Candidates will be notified about the admission decision by email in late January or early February for first round applicants and in late April or early May for second round applicants.

Can I contact alumni in my area? Can I contact current students?
Sure. You are welcome to do so. If you need, we can help you to get in contact with our students, ideally from your country or region.

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6. Visa

When can I apply and obtain student visa?
The student visa application form (JW202) and the official acceptance letter will be sent out in June if admitted. Normally, students may obtain the visa in middle or late August.


How can I apply my student visa?
Accepted applicants should bring the following materials to the embassy or consulate of the People's Republic of China in their respective countries in order to apply for the X visa:
  • •Passport
  • •Acceptance Letter
  • •Visa Application Form for Foreigners Wishing to Study in China (JW202)
  • •Form of Physical Examination Record for Foreigners and Blood Test Record
  • •Students must register before the deadline at the Foreign Students Affairs Office and get the Residence Permit within 30 days after they enter China.
Note: Students with both a Hong Kong/Taiwan/Macau ID card and a foreign passport are should carefully consider whether to apply as a Hong Kong/Taiwan/Macau student or as an international student. A registered international student must have a valid student visa and a valid Residence Permit while studying at Tsinghua. One can not apply as an international student to study and subsequently reside in Mainland China using his/her Hong Kong/Taiwan/Macau ID card.
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7. Curriculum

Can I take courses at SEM without being an admitted student?
If you are a current MBA student in another business school, you can apply as a non-degree student (advanced student) or exchange student (only if your university has signed an MOU for student exchange program with SEM). Please check with your own university for information about student exchange program.

Can I waive a required course if I've already taken it before?
We do not encourage our students to do so, but you may contact the course instructor to discuss it. The instructor will grant exemptions on a case-by-case basis.

What degree do SEM MBA Program graduates receive?
Upon completion of degree requirements, candidates receive a Master of Business Administration (MBA) degree. Global MBA students, in addition, will receive a certificate from MIT Sloan School of Management as well.

What is the average class size?
An MBA cohort is usually 60-70 students each. The cohort is split into 2 sessions for many required courses, especially the softskill courses, to ensure the active participation from every student.

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8. Financial Aid & Student Loan

How much does the MBA cost for an international student?
The tuition fee for the I-MBA, F-MBA, or P-MBA program beginning September 2012 is RMB ¥188,000.

Does Tsinghua provide any kinds of financial aid or student loan to international students?
Student loans are not available to international students. However, international students can apply for Beijing Government Scholarship (BGS) and Tsinghua University Scholarship (TUS). For detailed info, please refer to http://intlstudent.cic.tsinghua.edu.cn/EN/index.html. In addition, all students, including international students, are eligible to apply for several kinds of merit-based fellowships and scholarships after a period of study at Tsinghua.

Does Beijing Government Scholarship (BGS) and Tsinghua University Scholarship (TUS) cover all my tuition and living expense?
No, but it can cover a large portion of it. Both scholarships vary from RMB ¥15,000 RMB to ¥30,000. We encourage each candidate to explore all scholarships and sources of financial aid available in his or her home country as needed.

What are the selection criteria for Beijing Government Scholarship (BGS) and Tsinghua University Scholarship (TUS)?
The Foreign Student Affairs Office is authorized by Beijing Municipal Government and Tsinghua University to accept, review, and approve scholarship applications. The scholarships are established to attract and encourage excellent foreign students to study in Beijing and Tsinghua. The selection is based both on candidacy merit and on need.

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9. Student Life

How many students attend the SEM MBA Programs every year?
SEM has approximately 420 MBA students enrolled every year.

Where do most SEM students live?
Most full-time domestic students live on campus, but most international students choose to live off campus. Although neither the school nor the university can provide any information about housing off campus, affordable housing can be found close to the campus and near the public transportation system. Our current MBA students can also help you in finding housing off campus.

Does Tsinghua Provide on-campus housing for international students? If so, how can I apply for it?
Yes. On-campus housing is available for international students. You can visit website of Foreign Student Affairs Office at http://intlstudent.cic.tsinghua.edu.cn/EN/index.html for detailed info (check Campus Service, then Accommodation on Campus). Once admitted, you will be given instructions on how to apply for on-campus housing.

Can I work while studying at Tsinghua?
The program is quite demanding and rigorous, and you should expect to spend most of your weekday time studying. Incoming students are not encouraged to support themselves through work while taking this full-time program.

Are there opportunities to learn Chinese?
Aside from the Chinese classes offered every semester, the area around Tsinghua University has a large number of Chinese language schools, ranging from large classes to one on one study. Many international students take Chinese classes three or more times a week outside of their normal course load.

If you are interested in additional Chinese courses, some training sc hools around Tsinghua are provided below:

    Tsinghua Chinese Language Program
    Tel: +86-10-62784621
    Fax: +86-10-62771134
    E-mail:
lxsb@tsinghua.edu.cn
    Web:
http://intlstudent.cic.tsinghua.edu.cn/EN/index.html

    Beijing Language and Culture University
    Tel: +86-10-82303951
    Fax: +86-10-82303087
    Web:
http://www.studyinblcu.cn

Do I have to learn Chinese? How important is learning Chinese?
To be admitted into Global MBA Program, international students are not required to be proficient in Chinese. However, living in Beijing and doing business in China, especially in the areas of sales and marketing, require some grasp of Chinese. International students are highly encouraged to learn Chinese while studying at Tsinghua. Many different Chinese dialects exist throughout China, but Standard Mandarin, based on the Beijing dialect, is the official dialect used by Chinese government officials and most television and radio programs throughout China.

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