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Sun Yat-Sen University


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This topic is for discussion and reviews of Sun Yat-Sen University. Accommodation, courses, on-campus facilities and activities - anything to do with Sun Yat-Sen University goes in here. If there's a lot of discussion about any one particular topic we might split it into a new thread and leave a link here.


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  • 4 years later...
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Hey guys,

I will be going to SYSU for the Septermber term this year, and after ploughing through forums I am still not sure what is the best option for accomodation, so hoping someone can help me with a little advice. Having been living in China for 3 years (albeit not in a capital city), I feel that the 1,650 RMB p/month for a single room in the uni dorms is quite expensive. Though I have looked around at some (western) websites for accomodation close to the university, and it seems that it isn't really any cheaper. I'm just wondering what people's experiences are who have stayed here either in the dorms or outside. Currently I am living in a university campus as a teacher, and like being a part of the campus life. For those who have been in the dorms at SYSU, do you feel the same way or not? For those staying outside the university, can you tell me how much you paid, and (if possible) compare the living conditions to that inside the campus? I have some Chinese students who have done a quick browse on the internet and found close accommodation for 1000 RMB. Basically I am looking to either live by myself, or to share with 1 or 2 Chinese people (students or 20-somethings), and not looking to share with a foreigner, since I know I would end up doing no Chinese practice in this situation.

Thanks for anyone who can help me.


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That rent for single room in the uni dorm is for the international dorm near the south gate. There is also another dorm near the east gate and the small north gate, that dorm is much cheaper, about 450RMB per month. But it doesn't inlcude much, you have to buy everything besides the furniture, like mattress, blanket, pillow and so on. I don't remember, but they might only have a Chinese toilet. The rooms aren't as nice as at the international dorm, but seemed ok.

If you want to rent a studio outside the campus for cheaper than 1650 (including all the fees), then you perhaps have to setlle on something that isn't that nice. Atleast that's my experience when I was looking for an apartment last summer. Those apartments that you see online on Chinese sites often doesn't exist.

Of course there are some dirt cheap apartments near the university, but the most cheapest ones might be the ones foreigners aren't allowed to rent.

A good option both for your wallet and your language skills would be to rent together with Chinese students. I don't know in what kind of apartments they live if they chose to live outside the campus.

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  • 4 weeks later...

Hi, cool.

I go to this university right now. On a CSC scholarship to study one year of language. I'm pretty satisfied with everything so far.

(Tries to keep this topic active.)

If anyone has any questions about SYSU feel free to ask me!

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Emailing me? You remembered I went to this uni?

I have a spread sheet I put together over the summer. Sent out a few dozen emails yesterday - not much of a response though, not sure how interested people are in posting about a university they went to two years ago on a forum they only posted on twice.

Anyway, excellent stuff, many thanks.

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You start from 本一上 (your first semester at year one) and continue like this: 本一下 》

本二上 》本二下 》本三上》本三下》本四上》本四 下》graduation.

本means 本科 undergraduate studies, 一二三四refers to the year of study. 上下 refers to the first and second semesters respectively.

The registration is from hell. The office will open at 8:30, but if you wish to finish everything then you better get to the line at 7:00 or even earlier. The tricky point is that you don't know behind which door you should line up!

That sounds like my registration in my university years. It was not that bad, but it does make one wonder why it can't be done electronically nowadays. The not knowing where to line up part reminds me of lining up for check-in for my easyjet flight at Hamburg. These things do happen, and not just in China.

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I'm currently doing degree in UIBE(beijing), but i'm sick of this city, i want to move to gz.

I'm trying to get into SYS Bachelor degree in Finance, but I don't want to redo the 1st year, I want go get directly in the 2nd year.

Do you guys think its possible?

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@xuefang - chinese as a foreign language undergraduate degree, is this the degree that you're taking or is there a chinese as a second language degree? Is there a difference?

- do the courses teach or make a distinction between 'higher level' chinese i.e. formal reading, writing, speaking, listening for academic, research, or work purposes versus informal everyday conversations. Are the differences between spoken and written chinese, and formal vs informal chinese words, patterns, etc taught to some degree?

- how much of the reading and writing is practical and useful that it helps you for work purposes (report writing, business letter writing, resume, etc) and outside of the classroom?

- do the textbook materials cover politics, social sciences, economics, etc so that there is some exposure to common technical jargon in different fields

- classroom discussions: are they "free-flow, free style" or are they basically just parroting/memorizing the textbook and grammar structures? Do teachers correct mistakes or suggest better expressions to convey what you want to say?

- how much chinese idioms, idiomatic/classical sayings, or 'slang' is covered?

- any advanced cantonese courses available e.g. business cantonese, etc.

Thanks for your time and sharing your thoughts, much appreciated.

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1. Those degrees mean the same thing, sometimes it's called Chinese as a foreign language, sometimes Chinese as a second language.

2. I'll describe my courses in a more detail so you can get a better understanding what we are learning. These courses I have at the moment on 本三上 at 教育方向. I'm not that familiar with 商务方向, which might be more interesting to you.

口语: Spoken Chinese course is a bit dissapointment at the moment. My last semester's course was great because then we had to do a presentation almost everyweek. But now we only make one presentation during the whole semester. Teacher tries to teach us some sentence patterns and vocabulary related to our topics, but mostly it's just talking in a small group. (This might be because we are attending the course with non-degree students as I guess the university want's to save money and didn't want to give us four classmates a course of our own.)

汉语语言技能教学: At this course we learn how to teach 综合,听力,口语 and 写作. We study with a book called 对外汉语教学导论, which is originally meant for Chinese students.

综合: This course we also take together with non-degree students (again because my class only has four students). We use a book called 汉语精读教程高级1. This is a general 综合 book and nothing related to our 教育方向. At this level the 综合 courses point is to teach more formal words (书面语) and words with almost the same meaning (近义词). But the vocabulary in the book is still general vocabulary.

写作: Here we learn how to write opinion essays (议论文), but we also learned how to write a resume and a job application. Again, the courses are different for those who chose business Chinese.

语言学概论: This course is introduction to linguistics and there's no book.

现代汉语: On this course we use a book called 现代汉语 published by 商务印书馆出版. During this semester we will cover the topics of pronunciation (语音) and vocabulary (词汇). Next semester we will learn characters and grammar. This is one of the hardest course at the moment. In order to be able to teach Chinese we have to know what kind of language putonghua really is.

对外汉语教育引论: Here we learn more about what is this 对外汉语教学, it's a subject/major and a profession. We learned a bit about the history of teaching Chinese and will learn a bit about other fields related to it. Our most important topic of the course will be second language acquisition.

Those are our compulsory courses at the moment. 口语,综合 and 写作 are for learning the general language. And like you noticed, we don't have a listening course at the moment. Other courses are specifically for us with 教育方向 (teaching Chinese specialisation) and there we will learn related vocabulary along the course.

3. We only have two teaching Chinese related textbooks at the moment and both are very useful if I want to become a teacher, even though I'm not planning to do so, they also help me to know Chinese language in a deeper level and learn more about learning Chinese (a good teacher should be a good learner too). Our writing course isn't really related to our specialisation, but it's useful. That course will also help us when we write our bachelor thesis.

4. Like I wrote above our 综合 class is just general vocabulary, but our two textbooks of course include the vocabulary related to teaching Chinese. Teachers don't teach us vocabulary, but we learn it along the course.

5. Our spoken Chinese course isn't very good at the moment, but I have a selective course called 中国国情 which is mostly about us students making presentations and having discussion in class. This is an excellent way for me to practice spoken Chinese, much better than the spoken Chinese course. The discussion on the selective course is more free style and there are lot of opportunities for you to speak. On our spoken Chinese course our teacher will correct us and let us know if we have used wrong word, but she didn't give me (or the others about theirs) much feedback about my presentation.

6. Last semester we had a 阅读 class where our teacher also thaught us some slang expressions, we don't learn it much during this semester. There are quite many chengyu's on our 综合 textbook.

7. I'm afraid there's no really advanced Cantonese courses. I'm taking 中级粤语 at the moment, but it's still about telling the time, introducing our selves, talking about holiday plans. Maybe there are advanced courses for Chinese students, but I don't know anything about that.

I think that you would be more interested in about the Business Chinese option, but unfortunately I don't know much about it.

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  • 4 weeks later...

A post I made in another thread reminded me about this, but this university has an officially university sponsored local network server chock full of media for direct download. (Available at speeds like 10~20MiB/s; that's like a few secs for a movie, I'm serious)


www.maxcell.com.cn/ (this one also exists, but isn't as good imo)

(there are a few others, but I mainly use those two)

Another very useful webpage for info about the school/campus is: http://www.135995.com/ it lists the above two websites and many more.

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  • 1 month later...

Hello everyone,

I'm just accepted by SYSU last month to study master degree this fall semester. But the university said they might not get the JW202 in time and I have to go to China using a tourist visa and then change to X Visa.

Is it possible if I start studying in the university with a tourist visa?

Does anyone know how long does it take to change the L visa to X visa?

Currently I'm waiting for the acceptance letter from the university (waiting for more than a month not sure why it take so long). Actually, I'm planning to study Chinese language at Beijing around August (one month before the semester begin).

Not sure is it possible if I can change the visa type to study in SYSU Guangzhou while studying in Beijing. If it's not possible, this plan will have to be cancel.

Please advise, if anyone have pass through this kind of process before.


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Last summer I was in China with a tourist visa. Before September I went to Hong Kong with all the documents (including JW202) and got the X visa there. After getting the X visa you have one month time in China to get the temporary residence permit.

When I applied to SYSU they noticed that my old visa was going to expire in the end of July (X visa from another university). They asked what I'm going to do and I told them that I handle it my self by going to Hong Kong (first trip to get tourist visa, second trip to get X visa).

I really don't know if SYSU can or want to get you a X visa when you arrive with a tourist visa.

Finally, Welcome to SYSU! What major you chose?

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I chose IMBA because I know nothing about Chinese language :( and I want to improve my business knowledge.So I really need to study Chinese before the semester begin but not sure is it possible. I will seek advice from the university today, hope they can help me. :-?

Anyway, I'm planning to study Chinese at "Beijing International Chinese College" or "EastWest Connection". Does anyone know which one is better in term of teaching and service? Actually, I think the cost of these two schools is quite expensive but I cannot find any school that offer 1 month program for the absolute beginner in Aug. Any advice would be really appreciated :mrgreen:


So you mean you converted your visa two times (X to L and then L to X) :shock: , it look very easy for you. Is it really need to convert visa in HongKong, can't we do it at PSB in Guangzhou? And do you remember how long did it take for you to convert L to X visa.

Thanks :clap

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@sunroof You can change X to L or L to X in Hong Kong by staying there for one night. Hand in the papers in the morning and you get your visa the next day. I used a travel agency to help me so I didn't have to go to the office my self. (For a L visa you can get it in one day if you haven't had a X visa before).

I don't know if it's possible to change in Guangzhou, it's best to confirm from someone else :) I've just always had the impression that it's not possible.

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I'm planning to study Chinese at "Beijing International Chinese College" or "EastWest Connection".

Please don't ask about private schools in Beijing in a topic about a university in Guangzhou. Do research, search on here, then start a new topic if necessary.

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