Graduate FAQ


1. What kinds of financial support are availible for students in the Chinese Flagship Program?

Students accepted into the OSU Midwest US-China Flagship will be eligible for support from the following sources.

  1. Graduate Assistantships. A limited number of graduate assistantships are available through the Department of East Asian Languages and Literatures. If you are interested in a Graduate Assistantship, be sure to check the appropriate boxes while filling out your application to the Graduate School. Graduate Assistantships are normally awarded during autumn semester (typically during the last week of September) for the following academic year.
  2. University Fellowships. These highly competitive awards are made by the Graduate School to outstanding graduate students. For more information, please go to financial aid section.

2. Where do I find application forms for financial support?

If you are interested in getting financial support through OSU, including Graduate Assistantships and University Fellowships, you should check all possible boxes in the "Graduate School Admission Application Form" for full considerations and send out all materials before the published deadlines. For more information of University Fellowships, please visit .

3. Are GRE scores required for my application?

The GRE is not required for admission to the Flagship Program.  However, if you are interested in receiving financial aid through OSU, GRE scores are required.

5. What program should I choose in filling out the application form?

The online application limits the length of the program name. Please type "Flagship" as part of the East Asian Languages and Literatures department.

6. What specialty should I choose in filling out the application form for the Chinese Flagship Program?


7. On average how many students are enrolled in the program?

The Chinese Flagship Program at The Ohio State University typically enrolls 10-12 students each year.

8. What are the criteria for making admission decisions and for granting financial support?

Admission and support will depend on a number of aspects of your application, including, but not limited to: Chinese language skill, academic transcript, academic or occupational experience other than Chinese, work experience, and standardized test results.

9. How long should my statement of purpose be?

The statement of purpose should describe what your short term and long term goals are, why you would like to enroll in this program, how this program will assist you in achieving your goals, and what you plan to do after you complete this program. The statement is typically 1-2 pages.

10. Is there an interview process that goes with the application?

Yes, interviews are conducted with applicants who pass the initial screening based on their application package. Basically it is a phone interview to assess your language proficiency level. The result of the interview will become a factor in admission, support granting, and the necessity to attend the summer intensive program.

11. When will the academic year commence for the '14 session?

Please view the OSU Academic Calendar for important dates. After testing, we recommend that some potential students attend the summer program in Guangzhou as a preparation for the academic year program in Columbus.

12. Do I need to attend the summer intensive program?

We offer two intensive programs this summer: one is for post-first level students and the other is for advanced students that are pre-flagship students. If the result of an interview indicates only an ACTFL "intermediate - high" (ILR level 1.5) instead of "advanced - low" (ILR level 2), the student will be required to attend the summer intensive program that will train them to the "advanced-low" level in preparation for the autumn enrollment.

13. What about housing?

Some students are planning to arrive in Guangzhou one week or so before the official beginning of the program. Will they be able to live in the dormitory provided by our program? If it is possible, are they responsible for it?

Before the program starts, dorms are not guaranteed. However, we will try our best to book rooms for them at the dorm, university hotel or a nearby affordable hotel. Please email your itinerary to me so that we can arrange their pre-program accommodation. Students are responsible financially for pre-program stays.

14. What about traveling?

Some students might plan on traveling individually during the program or visiting their friends in other cities. Will students be allowed to leave Guangzhou during the program? How long will they be allowed to be absent? Are we responsible for our safety during the period that we are not in Guangzhou?

Students are free on the weekends. If they want to travel outside of Guangzhou, they must get permission from the program director and make arrangments with their teachers.

15. Can I use Credit card and Debit Card in China?

Will it be possible for students to purchase food or other things within China by credit card or debit card?

Foreign credit cards are typically not taken in China. One may withdraw cash from a limited number of ATM machines stationed at large bank branches. Students must be aware that service fees and transaction fees will most likely be imposed on cash advances like this. Also, the interest rate is much higher for cash advances. Using a debit card to obtain cash is better than using a credit card because no interest is charged if there are sufficient funds sitting on the account. Only those bank cards or debit cards that double as credit cards can do this. Still, service fees and currency conversion fees are usually exercised on this kind of transaction. It is recommended that students bring travelers checks instead of cash.

Opening a checking account with Charles Schwab is highly recommended. Their debit cards have no ATM fees or international fees anywhere in the world. There is also no minimum balance needed in the account. Please go to the Charles Schwab website for more information on accounts and how to open an account.

16. Can I return for Christmas?

Normally, students are not able to return for Christmas.  Students are required to follow the Chinese academic calendar since you are enrolled in a Chinese university.

17. Why do I have trouble registering for courses for the spring semester?

The most common reason is that the university has placed an administrative hold on your record. This is mainly caused by the missing of your final transcription from one of the college/universities you attended before you were admitted by OSU. Please be sure to check your admission letter from OSU Graduate School admission office. You need to submit all the documents listed under the "provision" term ASAP in order to enroll for the next semester. You can find the "hold information and clearance procedure" in your orientation package.

Another possible reason is that you have unpaid fees: library late fee, cota, student recreation center fee, etc. If you think you are all clear with the fees and transcripts, please stop by the graduate school in University Hall on the 2nd floor. The front desk will be able to check everything for you.

18. Can students who only have knowledge of simplified characters apply?

Yes you can. We recommend that students are able to read traditional characters because there are more and more places that use these characters nowadays in China.

19. Would it be acceptable for a professor to write me a recommendation who has not had me in their classes?

Out of the three recommendation letters, you should have at least 2 from your Chinese instructors who can verify your language abilities.

20. If I were to apply for an OSU fellowship, how is the letter of recommendation from the Flagship Program for the Fellowship written to the Graduate School without the author knowing the applicant personally?

Letters of recommendation are sent to the Chinese Flagship Program for completion.

21. What is the specific title of the Master's of Arts degree that the program offers?

Master of Art's in East Asian Languages and Literatures with a program in Advanced Chinese Language and Culture.

22. My references are in China. Is there a way for them to write the letters electronically?

There is a part of the online application where you can list your references and have the referees sign in and write the letter online.
There is also an option to upload statement of purpose and resume through the online application.