Why study Philosophy in China

Brief introduction 

Philosophy is the study of general and fundamental problems concerning matters such as existence, knowledge, values, reason, mind, and language. The term was probably coined by Pythagoras (570 – 495 BC). Philosophical methods include questioning, critical discussion, rational argument and systematic presentation. Classic philosophical questions include: Is it possible to know anything and to prove it? What is most real? However, philosophers might also pose more practical and concrete questions such as: Is there a best way to live? Is it better to be just or unjust (if you can get away with it)? Do humans have free will? 

To answer these questions Chinese universities continue to train and educate both nationals and international students in all courses related to philosophy. The universities use recognized philosophy curriculum as it was adopted by China Ministry of Education; the teachers in these universities have been trained abroad or in China.   Philosophy is a discipline which can increase our understating about the current advances in science and technology. 

Reasons to Study Philosophy in China

1. Philosophy is best taught

Philosophy teachers in Chinese universities are not interrupted by any kind of questions asked by students during class. Teachers are really trying to draw the students out, make them think for themselves. The more they challenge teachers, the more successful teacher feel as a teacher. Plato used the metaphor that in teaching philosophy, there needs to be a fire in the teacher, and the sheer heat will help the fire grow in the student. It’s something that’s kindled because of the proximity to the heat. Students learn to identify deeper philosophical issues and thought or more general philosophical concerns. 

2. Studying philosophy with students from a variety of backgrounds

Some students may be very uncomfortable because of different reasons. They needed a lot of handholding. Some came from very religious backgrounds, and just the questioning sent them into a free-fall. Some of them ended up being strongest students and others may have been very successful professional philosophers, due to the interaction with other students with different background. Philosophy students in various classes in Chinese universities are always asked to rethink all sorts of opinions. As a student you need to know your responsibilities and have lots of frameworks to apply to problems, and so many ways to interpret things.  Studying philosophy with students from different countries makes life so much more interesting and it helps to increase student humanity. 

3. Learn the biggest philosophical issues of our time

The growth in scientific knowledge presents new philosophical issues. Where are we in the universe? Physics is blowing our minds about this. The question of whether some of these scientific theories are really even scientific. Can we get predictions out of them? Are we discovering what we really are? Are we solving the problem of free will? Are we learning that there isn’t any free will? How much do the advances in neuroscience tell us about the deep philosophical issues? These are the questions that philosophers are now facing, so the reliable answers can be found in Chinese universities by joining philosophy major and meet with qualified professors. You will also learn to answer the questions like how we find meaning in our lives, with the decline of religion is there a sense of the meaninglessness of life and the easy consumerist answer that’s filling the space religion used to occupy? This is something that philosophers ought to be addressing.

Understanding how 25% of the world's population live in the same country, share the same history needs philosophical reasoning, therefore apart from studying philosophy in Chinese universities nowhere else you can know these. 

4. Economic and Culture attraction 

Most foreign students choose to study philosophy simply because it's interesting, it opens and expands your mind, and it allows a stronger global community to form by helping to lower ignorance about other people or countries. Chinese culture is ancient and is filled with interesting battles and treacheries, beautiful artwork, and insightful philosophy. Study philosophy in China as a country with only ancient civilization that stays untouched till today. Chinese culture had never been significantly changed. These will give philosophical understanding behind the strong and unified Chinese culture. 

The Chinese economy is already the 2nd largest economy in the world just after US, to understand how Chinese people achieved this economic progress in short period as it was happed need skilled philosophers who can explain this to the rest of the world.  What makes Chinese culture to continue to have an influence in almost all Asian culture, why when you say Asia as a continent most people understand China?  These and other philosophy questions could be only answered by someone who have study philosophy in China, and spent enough time with Chinese people. 

5. Low cost education and leaving expenses Affordable

Studying and living in China is cheaper than studying and living in European countries, the U.S., Japan, South Korea and even in many African countries. Food and consumption in China are as affordable, moreover everything is more than affordable in China. 

6. Scholarship Opportunities  

About 40,600 foreign students, or 10.21 percent of the foreign student population, received Chinese government scholarships. Most of Chinese universities have established scholarship for excellent foreign students in each level, means that you may start as self funding student and in middle of your studies you may get a scholarship. The other option is that starting undergraduate with self funding, then as you already familiar with everything in China you can apply for Chinese government scholarships for your postgraduate studies, note that many more foreigner students use this option.   

The following are main philosophy courses that you may found in most Chinese universities with Philosophy major: 

- Contemporary ethics, epistemology, metaphysics, and philosophical psychology. 

- Philosophy of language, philosophy of politics, Philosophy of science, philosophy of education 

- Modern philosophy thought , ancient philosophy thought and Chinese Philosophy 


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