Frequently asked questions about the Chinese Flagship
- What makes Chinese Flagship different from a regular major in Chinese?
Chinese Flagship is a comprehensive program for dedicated students who would like to reach professional proficiency in Mandarin Chinese. Flagship students take two more years of language coursework than the three years required for the EALC Chinese major at Indiana University. Altogether, they pursue five years of Chinese language study, completing their coursework at an accelerated rate.
Flagship students enhance their learning with study abroad for a summer in either mainland China or Taiwan. They receive one-to-one tutoring from native Chinese speakers, and spend a Capstone year in China, where they continue to study the language while enrolled in university courses in their major field. They participate in an internship relating to professional interests when in China, too.
Chinese Flagship students are eligible for Flagship funding. These typically cover the majority of their study abroad expenses.
- Who is a good candidate for Chinese Flagship?
The Flagship is designed for students who are passionate about learning Chinese and who are willing to put forth the effort needed to reach professional language proficiency. In addition to Chinese language coursework during the academic year, the program includes one or more summers of studying Chinese.
Students should be strong academically. We have a 3.00 minimum cumulative GPA requirement for all students and Chinese grade minimum of B (83%).
While the program is rigorous, we welcome students with various levels of exposure to Chinese: those with no Chinese language learning background, students with previous experience studying Chinese, and heritage Chinese speakers of all levels.
- Do I need to major in a particular discipline to be admitted to the program?
No. Students of all majors are welcome to apply to the program, including students in the College of Arts and Sciences, School of Global and International Studies, Kelley School of Business, School of Public and Environmental Affairs, School of Informatics, Jacobs School of Music, or any other undergraduate program at Indiana University.
Completing the required courses for the Chinese Flagship while pursuing another Bachelor’s degree enables students in the College of Arts and Sciences and the School of Global and International Studies (SGIS) to receive a minor in Chinese.
Students in the College and SGIS can also easily complete the EALC Language Flagship Chinese Concentration major (the Chinese Flagship major inside the department of East Asian Languages and Cultures) when earning the Chinese Flagship requirements.
To learn more about these programs and/or declare a major or minor please contact the EALC academic advisor or look at the EALC website. Keep in mind that you do not have to claim the Chinese Flagship as a major, and students with any academic major may apply.
- May I double major in East Asian Languages and Cultures (EALC)?
Yes. An EALC major will certify your accomplishments in the study of Chinese language and culture. Your second major helps you develop a breadth of knowledge and particular interests related to your long-term professional future.
- Is there a minimum GPA to be accepted to the program?
Yes. The minimum GPA standard for acceptance in the program is 3.25 overall for transfer students and current Indiana University Bloomington students. Incoming first-year students should be in the top 10% of their graduating high school class.
- How much does the IU Chinese Language Flagship Program cost? What funding opportunities are available?
Much of the Flagship training takes place on the IU Bloomington campus during the regular academic year, through both credit-bearing classes and free extracurricular activities. While no funding is provided from the Flagship program for academic years on campus, students are encouraged to apply for the wide variety of scholarships and financial aid available through IU and other sources, helping to fund both their academic years and summer study.
A select number of Flagship scholarships are available to especially committed and talented Chinese language learners, to facilitate one or (in some cases) two summers of language learning, either at the IU Flagship Chinese Institute or abroad at selected programs. Scholarships are also available for the Capstone year abroad.
Note that the Language Flagship, which funds these scholarships, reviews its scholarship funding guidelines annually and can make changes at any time. Typically, Chinese Flagship students are able to cover the majority of their study abroad expenses through Flagship scholarships.
Two other important IU scholarship sources are the Hutton Honors College and IU Office of Scholarships. Students may also consider federal funding such as Boren Scholarships and the Benjamin A. Gilman International Scholarship Program. Chinese Flagship staff offer assistance to students applying for these prestigious and competitive scholarships.
- Will my financial aid apply to study abroad?
Ordinarily, financial aid awarded to students for study at IU may be applied to overseas study for a program that contributes to the student's undergraduate degree. This is not, however, automatic.
To request that financial aid be applied to an overseas study program, you need to follow the procedure outlined by the Office of Overseas Studies and IU Financial Aid. Please see the Bloomington Office of Student Financial Assistance for detailed information about applying for (or renewing) financial aid.
- Will I get academic credit for the work I do studying Mandarin over the summer in China?
In most cases, you do receive academic credit for summer study abroad. However, this is not always the case and credit usually transfers as undistributed EALC credit. With the exception of the EALC Accelerated Chinese major, major requirements are generally not fulfilled with study abroad credit.
Students should work with their academic advisor to see which requirements may be fulfilled with their study abroad, making sure that they plan accordingly.
- I am a graduate student. Can I participate in the IU Chinese Language Flagship?
Graduate students are not eligible for admission to the Chinese Flagship Program. The program is only open to undergraduate students.