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Canada-China Scholars’ Exchange Program

The application period is closed for the 2023-2024 academic year.

Global Affairs Canada and the Chinese Ministry of Education are offering short-term scholarships to Canadians wishing to pursue post-secondary academic study, research or Chinese language training or a combination of these activities at participating Chinese institutions . Established in 1973, the Canada-China Scholars’ Exchange Program (CCSEP) was the result of an undertaking by then Chinese premier Zhou Enlai and Canadian Prime Minister Pierre Elliott Trudeau. Over the past 49 years, more than 1,100 scholars have participated in the program. Canadian scholars have brought new perspectives to their host country and returned to Canada with enhanced knowledge and understanding of China.

Scholarships are tenable at Chinese institutions that admit scholarship recipients of the Chinese Government Scholarship. These institutions are marked by an asterisk (*) in the list of participating Chinese institutions .

CCSEP is part of Global Affairs Canada’s International Scholarships Program.


To be eligible, candidates must:

  • ✔ be Canadian citizens
  • ✔ either:
    • a full-time teaching or research staff at a post-secondary or research institution in Canada;
    • a student enrolled in either a college, undergraduate or graduate program at Designated Learning Institution (DLI) in Canada; or
    • a mid-career professional from a Canadian government, media or cultural organization, or a national education association, who has a graduate (Master's or doctoral) degree and has had managerial, policy development or decision making responsibilities within this organization for at least three years.
  • ✔ have achieved the required level of written and spoken Chinese by the host institution in China, if applicable. Where Chinese is the language of instruction, proficiency must be HSK level 3 for undergraduate studies and HSK level 4 for graduate studies;
  • ✔ be undertaking studies in an approved subject area in a Chinese institution;
  • ✔ not be seeking a degree in China;
  • ✔ be under 45 years of age if applying under the “General Scholar” category of the China Scholarship Council (CSC); and
  • ✔ be under 50 years of age if applying under the “Senior Scholar” category of the CSC.

Employees of the Government of Canada’s departments and agencies (including those on leave), although eligible for this scholarship, are not eligible for the travel benefit funded by the Department of Foreign Affairs, Trade and Development (DFATD).

Scholarship value and duration

Scholarship duration

Scholarships are awarded for:

  • Four to 12 months for students
  • Eight weeks to 12 months for mid-career professionals, faculty members and researchers

Scholarship Value

There are two components to the CCSEP scholarship.

The Chinese Government Scholarship component covers:

  • tuition fees at participating Chinese institutions ;
  • a monthly stipend (approximate values):
    • 2,500 Yuan for undergraduate students
    • 3,000 Yuan for Master's students/general scholars
    • 3,500 Yuan for Doctoral students/senior scholars
  • on-campus accommodation or a subsidy for off-campus accommodation (if permitted by the host institution); and
  • comprehensive medical insurance.

The Global Affairs Canada scholarship component covers the cost of travel to and from the destination in China via the most cost-effective route between the scholarship recipient’s point of origin and the final destination.

How funding works

Recipients will receive information regarding payment of their Chinese Government Scholarship from their host institution. Funds for this component are disbursed by the Chinese Ministry of Education.

Scholarship recipients must sign a Grant Agreement with Global Affairs Canada, through its legal name, the Department of Foreign Affairs, Trade and Development (DFATD), in order to receive the in-kind grant towards the round-trip flight to and from China. Travel arrangements will be made through the designated travel agency of the scholarship administrator. DFATD will only cover the cost of approved flights to and from China at the beginning and completion of the scholarship. Any additional costs are the responsibility of the scholarship recipient.

Application process

3-step process

Candidates must complete a three-step application process.

  1. Step one: complete and submit the online application form of the Department of Foreign Affairs, Trade and Development (DFATD) available on this site and provide the supporting documents as requested.
  2. Step two: complete and submit the CSC online application on the China Scholarship Council (CSC) website as well as print and mail the application package to the Canadian Bureau for International Education (CBIE) in Ottawa, Canada.
  3. Step three: mail additional supporting documents to CBIE.

Candidates are required to submit both the DFATD application form and the CSC application form to be considered for the scholarship.

Step 1: DFATD online application

Application instructions for candidates

  1. Login or Create an account on Momentum to apply for the scholarship.
  2. Once you have logged into your account, select the Canada-China Scholars’ Exchange Program in the “For Canadians Section” and click on “Apply Now”.
  3. Enter data in the fields marked mandatory and follow instructions for each item.
  4. Upload all required supporting documents. Each document must be smaller than 5 MB and in .pdf, .jpg, .doc, .docx, .txt or .gif format. All documents must be in either English or French.
  5. Verify the data prior to submission.
  6. Click “SUBMIT”. You will receive a confirmation message and a reference number for submitted applications.
  7. Print the form for your records using the print function in the browser.

Visit Help with Momentum for more information.

Supporting documents

  • Certificate of pre-admission or copy of correspondence
    • a certificate of pre-admission from the host institution or copy of correspondence demonstrating that the candidate has requested admission or will have access to the facilities needed to complete the proposed research project
    • email correspondence with the international admissions office or a potential academic collaborator is accepted
  • Proof of citizenship
    • a copy of the candidate's passport (valid for the duration of the scholarship)
    • documents not accepted as proof of citizenship are: birth or baptismal certificate, driver’s license, permanent residence card or health card
  • Copy of official transcripts
    • an official transcript of the highest post-secondary studies completed (including colleges and CÉGEPs) and an official transcript of studies in progress (if applicable)
    • the institution’s seal and registrar’s signature must appear on the transcript
  • Study or research proposal
    • an essay describing your study or research plan (maximum two pages)
  • Copy of diploma
    • for the highest degree or diploma obtained
    • college or undergraduate students who have not yet obtained a post-secondary degree or diploma can upload a high school diploma
  • Proof of registration for studies in progress (if applicable)
    • must be issued by the Registrar’s Office at the candidate’s Canadian home institution to confirm full-time enrolment in an academic program
Step 2: China Scholarship Council (CSC) online application

Application instructions for candidates

  1. Create an account on the CSC online application .
  2. Select “Type A” under the Program Category.
  3. Indicate 1241 as the Agency Number.
  4. Select three institutions on the application. Those who indicate that they are not willing to consider alternatives may be withdrawn from consideration if the institution that they have indicated is deemed inappropriate by CSC, or is not able to offer a place.
  5. Download, print and sign one copy of the application once completed. Candidates should include a signature in the blank space at the bottom of the last page of the application.
  6. Ensure to include a photo of the candidate on the first page of the application form.
  7. Candidates must apply either under the “General Scholar” category or the “Senior Scholar” category of the CSC. Candidates applying under the “General Scholar” category must hold at least a high school diploma and be under the age of 45. Candidates applying under the “Senior Scholar” category to undertake research in China must hold at least a Master’s degree or be associate professors or research staff and be under the age of 50.

The CSC application may require additional documentation not required for the DFATD application.

All inquiries regarding the CSC application should be directed to:

Embassy of the People’s Republic of China in Canada
Attention: Education Office - Canada-China Scholars' Exchange Program

Consult the Bilateral Program on the CSC website for more information.

Step 3: Additional supporting documents to be sent by mail

Application instructions for candidates

  1. Submit additional supporting documents by mail to the scholarship administrator at:
    • Canadian Bureau for International Education (CBIE)
    • Attention: Canada-China Scholars' Exchange Program
    • 220 Laurier Avenue West, Suite 1550
    • Ottawa, Ontario
    • K1P 5Z9
  2. All documents must be in either English or French.
  3. It is the responsibility of the candidate to ensure that CBIE receives all required documents by the deadline.
  4. An acknowledgement of receipt will not be provided.
  5. It is strongly recommended that candidates send the documents to CBIE in one package using a method that provides confirmation of delivery, such as a courier or registered mail.

Supporting documents

  • CSC online application form
    • a copy of the completed and signed CSC online application form
  • Two letters of recommendation
    • letters from a professor, supervisor or employer
    • letters must be on letterhead, state the candidate’s name, be dated and signed
    • letters should explain the nature of the study or research and how the candidate will benefit from this scholarship program
  • Proof of Chinese language proficiency (if applicable)
  • CV
    • includes work experience; most relevant scholarly publications and other knowledge dissemination activities, if applicable; most important distinctions, prizes, or scholarships received to date and their value, if applicable; and other relevant professional and/or academic accomplishments demonstrating academic merit, leadership abilities, and/or commitment to innovation and creativity
    • maximum 6 pages
  • Samples of work (if applicable)
    • candidates in fine arts, painting, graphic arts, sculpture and photography must submit three color pictures of three art pieces on a USB key, CD or DVD
    • filmmakers and video artists must submit at least one recent film, indicating when it was made, how the candidate was involved in its production, and the running time. These must be provided on a USB key, CD or DVD, be dated, and clearly identified with the candidate's name
    • candidates in music must submit a USB key, CD or DVD of three original compositions totaling no more than 30 minutes
    • candidates in architecture must submit up to three reproductions of drawings, provided on a USB key, CD or DVD

Note: submitted applications and documents will not be returned.

Scholarship selection criteria

We evaluate applications based on:

  • professional or academic merit
  • rationale for going to China
  • feasibility of the proposed study or research plan
  • mid-career professionals must demonstrate strong leadership qualities through a commitment to innovation, creativity and an entrepreneurial spirit
  • preference will be given to those candidates whose study or research plan is related to China

Note: We give priority to students who have not previously received a scholarship under the Canada-China Scholars’ Exchange Program.

Key dates

Application deadline

The deadline for candidates to submit both the DFATD application form and the CSC application form is 11:59 p.m. EDT, January 20, 2023.

Notification of results


Candidates will be contacted by February 16, 2023 regarding the status of their application. Pre-selected candidates will receive a letter of intent from the Embassy of the People’s Republic of China in Canada, which they will need to submit as soon as possible to the three Chinese institutions listed on their application to obtain a letter of pre-admission.

Pre-selected candidates are expected to submit the Letter(s) of Pre-Admission, if available, from their selected participating Chinese institution(s) and, if required, the Foreigner Physical Examination Form, to the CSC online application form by February 26, 2023.

Pre-selected candidates who do not obtain a Pre-admission Letter by February 26, 2023 will be allowed to continue to the next step of the CCSEP selection process. CSC makes the final decision on the Chinese host institutions for the selected recipients.

Final selection

CBIE will communicate with successful candidates by Summer 2023.

Successful candidates will receive an Admission Notice from the Chinese host institution along with materials related to the visa application process and travel to China around the same time as the final selection.

Selection of the scholarship recipients is subject to the CSC agreeing to the terms of admission of the host university or institution in China.

Recipient arrival in China

The scholarship is tenable between September 2023 and August 2024.

The Chinese academic year typically begins in September and ends in mid-July, including a winter vacation of approximately three weeks in January or February.

For the 2023-2024 Chinese academic year, the fall semester will be from September 2023 to January 2024, and the spring semester will be from February 2024 to July 2024.

Scholarship conditions

Conditions for successful applicants

Selected applicants agree to:

  • be enrolled at their host university for the time periods approved by the China Scholarship Council (CSC). Permission for late enrollment must be obtained by the Chinese institution
  • return to Canada upon completion of their exchange program
  • not concurrently hold other scholarships offering similar benefits
  • apply for an X1 or X2 Visa and hold a valid passport for the duration of their stay in China
  • have appropriate medical insurance coverage for the duration of the scholarship
  • focus on their studies, research and/or Chinese language training at the Chinese host institution
  • not undertake paid employment in China during their scholarship

Failure to meet these conditions may result in the cancellation of the scholarship.

Additional information

  • Scholarships cannot be deferred and are not renewable
  • Scholarships are subject to availability of funding from the Government of Canada
  • Scholarships are not taxable for either the Canadian institution or the scholarship recipient
  • There is no appeal process for unsuccessful applications
  • The selection committee does not provide feedback to unsuccessful candidates
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