China: Chinese Culture and Architecture – CLOSED

Beijing, China

Program website not available Type:   |  Minimum GPA:
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  • Summer 1 Semester - May 3 - June 7, 2014 (dates subject to change)

Application Deadline

  • Summer 1 Semester - Priority Deadline: November 15, 2013

Priority deadline is November 15th with a final deadline of January 26th. Program accepting applications until filled and is subject to close at any time.


Faculty Leader: Prof. Shuishan Yu (

Study Abroad Coordinator: Katie Rabbitt Burke (

Information Session with LUNCH!:

Monday, January 13th, 2014  from 12:00 – 1: 00 p.m.  Location: TBD  PIZZA and drink will be served!

Term: Summer 1


  • ARCH4850 Urban and Architectural History Abroad
  • CLTR4944  Cultural Engagement Abroad

Program Description:

Students who participate in this Dialogue will be immersed in the colorful art world of China. They will be introduced to the various historical sites with great significance in the development of Chinese urbanism, architecture, and arts, being it in a city, a village, a temple, or a sacred mountain. They will study Chinese art and architecture first hand while exploring a variety of cultural and ethnic regions in China, developing a solid and comprehensive understanding of Chinese culture through the direct observation of its urban and artistic expressions. Students will also participate in a cultural and professional dialogue with architects in Beijing and Shanghai, artists in Hangzhou, musicians in Nantong, and students from the College of Architecture and Landscape Architecture (CALA), Peking University. Written work and group projects will compare China and the U.S. on topics of urbanization, architectural practice, artistic expressions, and historical preservation and interpretation.

The five-week long program will be divided into two parts. During the first three weeks, students will use Peking University as the base, attending lectures and workshops while exploring China’s most important cultural, political, and economic center and its vicinities, including Tiananmen Square, the Forbidden City, and the Summer Palaces. During the first three weeks in Beijing, each student will be paired up with a Peking University student, a dialogue pal to exchange cultures and language skills while having meals in the university dinning halls on daily basis. Weekend excursions bring students to the terra-cotta armies in Xi’an and the Buddhist Caves in Luoyang, both ancient capitals from the pre-Song eras. During the last two weeks, students will be on a comprehensive tour visiting other significant sites in Chinese art, architectural, and urban histories, including the best architecturally preserved Shanxi province, the Modern cosmopolitan Shanghai, the garden city Suzhou, the Southern Song capital Hangzhou, the typical Jiangnan water towns, and a variety of historic religious sites.

All domestic travels, which are plenty, are by trains and buses, which give students opportunity to see the changes of natural landscape from endless plain to loess plateau to lofty mountains, and cultural landscape from socialist metropolitan to Islamic ethnics to Buddhist and Taoist rural areas.


ARCH4850 Urban and Architectural History Abroad

ARCH4850 Syllabus

CLTR4944  Cultural Engagement Abroad

CLTR4944 Syllabus

Host University

During the first three weeks, instructions are based in Beijing, attending lectures and workshops given by leading scholars and practitioners from Peking University – the major host for the Northeastern program and one of the most prestigious universities in China – and other cultural educational institutions, with weekend excursions to the nearby cities. Lectures are given in English, and workshops with English translation. Students are also required to have sustained dialogs with students and faculty of the host institution.

Eligibility Requirements

  • Minimum 2.5 GPA
  • Interviews by the instructor
  • Open to all majors
  • Open to both undergraduate and graduate students

Application Procedure

    • Online Dialogue of Civilizations application (available on OISP website and myNEU)
    • $500 non-refundable program deposit paid through NUPay.* Be sure to select the appropriate summer term.**
    • One copy of passport ID page – to be given directly to your faculty leader after acceptance.
    • 2-3 page essay answering the following questions (copy and pasted into online application):
    1. What are your personal and academic reasons for wishing to participate in this Dialogue of Civilizations program?
    2. How will the program further your academic and career goals?
    3. What is your previous travel and language experience, if any?
    4. What courses have you taken which are directly relevant to the program?

    *If you are not accepted into your Dialogue program, the $500 deposit will be credited to your student account.

    **Applications are not considered complete until deposit is received. This deposit will be applied to the full cost of the program.

    **Faculty may require additional information and/or interview (after application deadline)

Schedule Appointment →


Tuition: $10, 195

DOC Fee: $2,500

Tuition and DOC Fee cover 8 Northeastern credits, round-trip airfare from Boston, housing for program duration, International SOS assistance, as well as some local transport, excursions and group meals.


For the first three weeks: University guesthouse at the Peking University, with internet access and laundry.

For the last two weeks: All expenses except for meals, including lodging (hotels with free internet access), trains, buses, and tickets, are included in the tours.


Beijing: This is the capital of China and the country’s cultural, political, and economic center. It was also the capital for the Yuan (1279-1368), Ming (1368-1644) and Qing (1644-1911) dynasties. Famous sites include the Forbidden City, the Great Wall, the Summer Palaces, the imperial mausoleums, and much more. Beijing is also famous for its modern architecture designed by world-class masters and a haven for modern design industry and flourishing contemporary artistic activities.

Luoyang: Luoyang is one of the six ancient capitals of China. It served as the national capital during the Eastern Zhou (771-256 BCE) and Eastern Han (25-220) dynasties. Significant sites include the first Buddhist temple in China Baimasi and the enormous Buddhist caves at Longmen.

Xi’an: Xi’an is one of the six ancient capitals of China. It served as the national capital during the Western Zhou (1045-771 BCE), Qin (221-202 BCE), Western Han (202 BCE-8 CE), and Tang (618-906) dynasties. Significant sites include the imperial tombs of Qin-Han period, Terra-cotta Armies of the First Emperor, and ruins and the pagodas from the Tang period.

Shanghai: This is the most metropolitan city in China and the financial capital of the country. Shanghai is famous for its European style architecture built in the late nineteenth century and early twentieth centuries. The new district Pudong has the world’s most densely populated skyscrapers and the city owns a diverse collection of contemporary architectural masterpieces. Shanghai’s historical heart – a traditional county seat during the Ming-Qing period – is well preserved.

Suzhou: This is the garden city of China, one of the “two paradises on earth” according to the Chinese convention. The city has the best collection of Chinese literati gardens.

Hangzhou: Hangzhou is the other one of the “two paradises on earth.” It was the capital of the Southern Song (1127-1279) dynasty and home to many great temples and gardens. Modern art and design is flourishing here.

Shanxi: Shanxi province has the best collection of the oldest timber structures in China. Ancient ruins and traditional cities with walls and gates are best preserved in this region.