Global E3: Xiamen University-China



For the AY 2022-2023, this program will not be offered. The following information is provided as a reference for future years and is subject to change.  

Spend a semester studying engineering in Xiamen, China!

Xiamen University was  founded in 1921and offers many programs in humanities, social sciences, natural sciences, engineering and technology, management, arts education, medical science, and others, conferring a full range of bachelor's, master's and doctoral degrees. The university currently contains 26 schools, 66 departments, and 9 research institutes. Nestled snugly between green hills and the blue sea, XMU is renowned as China’s "most beautiful university" for its excellent education facilities and beautiful environment.

This exchange program is College of Engineering (ENGR) specific, meaning only undergraduate ENGR students may participate. XMU and Pitt are members of Global E3, an exchange consortium of over 60 Engineering Schools from around the world. This consortium is administered by the Institute of International Education (IIE) For more information about the university, see the Global E3 XMU page and the Xiamen University website   

Typically, semesters are: 

    • Fall: mid-September to late January 
    • Spring: mid-February to mid-June 

XMU  accepts students for Fall, Spring or Academic Year 


Fact sheet: 
Learning Objectives: 


As an active and engaged participant on this program, you will have the opportunity to develop: 

  • the ability to succeed independently in a foreign education environment. 
  • non-US based perspectives on your field of study and/or future career path. 
  • a global network of peers in similar fields of study and connections with faculty in <<host country>> 



Partner Information: 

Office Responsible for International Exchange Students  
Office of International Cooperation and Exchange
Contact Persons
Prof. Xuemin Hong
Grace Liu     

Location Description: 

Located on the southeastern coast of China, Xiamen is a tourist city famous for its attractive seascape. A major seaport since ancient times, Xiamen boasts a wide gulf of deep water. Because of its seaside location, the city was named "Xiamen," meaning "a gate of China." 

Housing Description: 

Xiamen University offers multiple housing options. Please refer to the GE3 website for information.





Academic Description: 

Use the links below to see if the specific departments offer the types of courses you would like to take while studying abroad.  We suggest you review courses available with your academic advisor prior to applying to the program. 

At Xiamen University, courses are taught in Chinese and a limited number are also offered in English. 
Academic Departments: 

Visit the University's website to learn more about course offerings in ENGLISH and check the GE3 Xiamen website for general course information. The following disciplines are available: 

  • Mechanical & Electrical Engineering (mechanical/grads, electrical/undergrads)
  • Digital Media Engineering (grads)
  • Software Engineering (grads)
  • Intelligent Science & Technology (grads)
  • Communication Engineering (grads)
  • Electronic Engineering (undergrads & grads)
  • Materials Science & Engineering (grads)

Minimum Requirements: 

  • SSoE student in good standing 
  • Minimum 2.75 GPA for engineering students 
  • Sophomore standing or higher 


Of note: 

  • All courses must be approved by the Faculty Director of your department in the Swanson School of Engineering. A course approval form must be completed and submitted to SSoE’s Engineering International Initiatives Office. 
  • Additionally, for the purpose of full-time status here at Pitt, students should be prepared to take what is equivalent to at least 12 Pitt credit hours.   
  • Courses taken at Xiamen will be treated as transfer credits and will be marked as pass/fail (S/NC) on a Pitt student's transcript. In other words, transfer credits will not affect your Pitt GPA. However, students must receive a C grade or higher in order for the credits to transfer. Actual grades earned will appear on the transcript from the exchange university. 
  • Language Requirements: Non-native English speakers may be required to show evidence of English proficiency.      



Students who have attended this program in the past have taken classes in the areas of:: 

For information about the grading scale at Xiamen, please see the exchange handbook on Xiamen website.  



Xiamen will provide a hardcopy (or electronic transcripts) to the Engineering International Initiatives Office. Make sure that you follow their instructions on how to ensure that an official copy of your grades are received. Hardcopies should be sent the following address: International Engineering Initiatives, Swanson School of Engineering, University of Pittsburgh, 152 Benedum Hall, 3700 O’Hara Street,  Pittsburgh, PA  15261, USA. Electronic copies should be sent to Dr. Kristine Lalley, Director, International Engineering Initiatives.   

Exchange university transcripts typically do not arrive from the exchange university until 3 to 4 months after the end of exchange period. Therefore, Pitt students should be mindful of how this may affect their ability to graduate, especially when exchanging during one's senior year. Another consideration is how this may affect your financial aid package, as the S/NC grades are not posted until transcripts are received. 


Experiential Learning Description: 

Supplemental Internship – Industrial and institute's intern jobs are available locally after the exchange study in XMU is completed. See Global E3 Xiamen website  for more info. 

Program Fees: 

Pitt students participating on an exchange program will pay regular Pitt tuition and fees, according to their in-state or out-of-state residency status. In addition to the Study Abroad Administrative Fee, this also includes all Mandatory Fees, such as the Student Activity Fee, Wellness Fee, Computing and Network Services Fee, and the Security, Safety, and Transportation Fee.

Pitt Students on financial aid and/or tuition scholarships will need to consult the Office of Admissions and Financial Aid or respective entity providing the funds to confirm coverage for study abroad. 

Items Billed by Pitt


 Tuition: Check Pitt's website to verify current costs: 
 Program Fee: Check Pitt's website to verify current costs 
 Study Abroad Fee $400 
 Total Billed by Pitt: Estimate your Pitt expenses based on current tuition and fees
How Much To Budget: 

Estimated Additional Out-of-Pocket Costs

Travel Expenses: Airfare, Passport, Visa, Resident Permit  $2,000  
Room & Board $3,000 - 5,000  
Personal Expenses $1,000 - 5,000  

The Estimated Costs reflect information provided by exchange partner and are reported to OAFA to calculate financial aid packages. The listed costs are defaulted to one semester. Multiply the costs by two for two semesters.Personal expenses vary with individual students. Review the Xiamen website , the Global E3 Xiamen specifc page as well as our budgeting page for more information.

The University of Pittsburgh provides comprehensive health insurance as part of studying abroad. More information about the type of insurance and coverage will be provided to you by the International Engineering Initiatives Office. However, you may need to purchase additional insurance if the exchange school you will attend requires you to purchase a specific health insurance per their regulations. It is your responsibility to ensure you know the cost of that insurance prior to committing to the program.

For global scholarship opportunities, check out:

  • the Pitt GEO scholarship page for links to national, provider and private scholarship samples
  • PittFund$Me  for Pitt sponsored funding including Pitt wide global scholarships, Nationality Rooms, VIH, etc.
  • PittFund$Me  for the SSOE Global Experience Scholarships!


Xiamen University Scholarship: 10 Scholarships (RMB 5000 or $800 each)have been offered by Xiamen University. Please see the Global E3 Xiamen website for more information. .

Program Dates: 

Pitt students enroll at Xiamen for either a full semester (fall or spring) or a full academic year (two full semesters). Xiamen’s calendar may differ from Pitt's normal fall (August through December) and spring (January through April) semesters, so Pitt students should check the academic calendar at the exchange university. Typically, Xiamen’s semesters run as follows: Fall: mid-September to late January and Spring: mid-February to mid-June. The dates listed above are estimated and therefore subject to change according to the host university’s schedule.

Application Instructions: 

Pitt sends a limited number of students per semester to Xiamen through the Global E3 exchange. You must first be accepted by the Swanson School of Engineering International Initiatives Office, then you will be directed to apply to Global E3. (Typically SSoE application deadlines are late September for Spring and early February for Fall.) A formal nomination from SSoE Engineering International Initiatives is required for Pitt students to be recognized as an exchange student at Xiamen. Therefore, Pitt students must complete all necessary Pitt steps in addition to Xiamen's requirements. In other words, acceptance by Pitt Engineering International Initiatives does not guarantee acceptance by the exchange university.  

Prior to being accepted, please visit the Global E3 website and read the application instructions and application deadlines. (In the past, Global E3 application deadlines have been October 1st for spring semester programs and March 1st for fall semester programs.) 

Each university might have an additional application.  Please refer to the Global E3 Xiamen website for details.  


  • SSoE student in good standing 
  • Minimum 2.75 GPA for engineering students 
  • Sophomore standing or higher 


Additional Information: 

Questions about funding? Check out our funding pages and note that SSoE has funding specifically for engineering students! There are many other national funding sources you can review. One place to search is the Institute of International Education website. 

Language Requirements: Non-native English speakers will be required to show evidence of English proficiency. 

Xiamen University Scholarship: 10 Scholarships (RMB 5000 or US $800 each) will be offered by Xiamen University.  Please see Global E 3 Xiamen's page for more information. 

Language Requirements: Courses are taught in Chinese and there are also a limited number taught in English.  Please review websites for more information. 


Insurance Requirements: 


The University of Pittsburgh provides comprehensive health insurance as a part of studying abroad. More information about the type of insurance and coverage will be provided to you by the Engineering International Initiatives office.  However, you may need to purchase additional insurance if the school you will attend requires you to purchase a specific health insurance per their regulations. It is your responsibility to ensure you know the cost of that insurance prior to committing to the program. 


Visa Requirements: 


In order to study as a student in specific countries, a visa is required. A visa is formal endorsement by the host country to grant permission for an individual to enter, live or stay in that country for a specific purpose and period. In addition to a visa, some host countries may require a residency permit upon arrival. 

For those without the host country’s nationality, students may need to obtain a student visa to study on this exchange. Pitt students should also research the visa and/or permit process through the specified country consulate website.  

In general visa application requirements may include but are not limited to the following requirements:  

  • Visa application 
  • Valid Passport 
  • Verification of acceptance from sponsoring university (exchange university) 
  • Financial Documents, such as bank statements, tax documents or pay statements.   
  • Passport photos 
  • Application fee 
  • Medical/physical examination (likely to require a doctor's appointment so plan accordingly)