Skip to content

Programs : Brochure

  • Locations: Shanghai, China
  • Program Terms: Spring, Year
  • Budget Sheets: Spring
Fact Sheet:
Language of Instruction: English Language Prerequisite: See Program Description
Minimum Cumulative GPA: 3.0 Credit Available For: SEAS
Other Eligibility Requirements: 1 Area Studies Course in Language or Culture (Recommended) Type of Program: Semester/Year Study Abroad
Application Deadline: Fall/Year: February 15, Spring: September 15
Program Description:

Program Snapshot

Shanghai Jiao Tong University

BSU LogoShanghai Jiao Tong University (SJTU) has 31 schools (departments), 63 undergraduate programs, 250 masters programs, 203 Ph.D. programs, 28 post-doctorate programs, and 11 state key laboratories and national engineering research centers.  Its total enrollment of students amounts to over 35,000, of which over 1,500 are international students. Students studying at SJTU will take their courses through the School of Mechanical Engineering, which offers programs in mechanical engineering and automation, power and energy engineering, industrial engineering, and nuclear science and engineering.

For additional information, visit the Shanghai Jiao Tong University website
The City of Shanghai

Shanghai is known for its long history of foreign influence, fashion, and economic prowess. It is a popular tourist destination renowned for its historical landmarks such as The Bund, City God Temple, and Yu Garden, as well as the extensive and growing Lujiazui skyline, home to some of the tallest skyscrapers in the world. It has been described as the “showpiece” of the booming economy of mainland China.  The official language is Mandarin, while the vernacular is Shanghainese.  With a population of 23 million, Shanghai is the largest city (by population) in China.

Did you know…?

Sections of the city were historically gifted to foreign countries as concessions, many of which are now tourist attractions.  Of these concessions, the French Concession is the most well preserved and well known – it is filled with European architecture and art styles.



The program at Shanghai Jiao Tong University is for Engineering students.

Minimum GPA Requirement: 3.0

Language Prerequisite: Classes may be taken in English but students should have a working knowledge of Mandarin to navigate life in Shanghai/China. Students should also be able to operate independently and with little administrative support in China.
Additional Course Pre-requisite(s): This program is intended for SEAS students studying mechanical engineering. Successful completion of one area studies course in language or culture by the end of the academic semester (fall or spring) prior to departure is recommended, but not required. 

Other Requirements: Shanghai Jiao Tong is unable to accept students with Chinese citizenship.
The program at SJTU is for the spring semester or academic year only. 


Language of Instruction

English, Mandarin


Penn students must maintain a full course load while abroad and may only enroll in courses at the undergraduate level. SEAS students should work closely with their academic advisor when selecting courses to ensure they stay on track academically at Penn.

SJTU Academic Calendar
SJTU Course Catalog for Incoming Exchange Students
Grading Scale

As on all Penn Abroad programs, grades are recorded on the Penn transcript and are calculated in the cumulative grade point average. The pass/fail option can be exercised according to the Penn on-campus policy for your home school.  For more on Penn Abroad’s academic policies, click here.

Grades are reported to Penn on the Shanghai Jiao Tong University scale and then converted to Penn grades according to the following grade equivalencies:
SJTU Penn Grade
95 - 100 A+
90 - 94 A
85 - 89 A-
80-84 B+
75 - 79 B
70 - 74 B-
67 - 69 C+
65 - 66 C
62 - 64 C-
60 - 61 D
0 - 59 F
*Grade scale above effective fall 2017 and beyond. 

Special Features

BSU Special FeaturesOrientation Activities

All Penn students are required to attend the orientation activities organized by Shanghai Jiao Tong University prior to the start of each semester. 

Language Courses

The School of International Education organizes Chinese language courses on the downtown Xuhui campus. To avoid schedule clashes between engineering courses and the Chinese language course, exchange students should first select engineering courses and then sign up for Chinese language courses (at most eight lecture hours per week).

Additionally, students studying at SJTU during the spring semester can opt to arrive in January to take part in the pre-semester Chinese Language and Culture course at SJTU’s downtown campus and attend the Spring Festival.

Internship Opportunities
BSU Special Features
Students have the opportunity to intern with a multinational corporation, pending availability, to be arranged when students arrive at SJTU. Please note that internships are not credit-bearing and are not guaranteed.

Student Associations

Penn students studying at Shanghai Jiao Tong University have access to a wide range of student activities and associations. More information can be found here


BSU Campus
Participants must be willing to live under local conditions for students.

Students have the option to live on-campus. Double and single rooms are available and include a bathroom, wardrobe, fridge, and air conditioner. There is a shared laundry room, kitchen on each floor, free gym, and internet access for each room. No support is provided for students who wish to live off campus.

Information regarding accommodation can be found here.

Cost and Finance

Penn Abroad Financial Policies

Students are charged Penn tuition and academic fees for all Penn Abroad programs.  Additional expenses will typically include items such as housing, visas, and airfare.  Please see the program budget sheets below for more information.  For more on Penn Abroad’s financial policies, click here.

Financial Aid and Study Abroad

In most cases, financial aid applies to Penn-approved programs.  Student Financial Services reviews program budget sheets each semester to determine how to appropriately adjust your aid package. For more information on how Financial Aid will work during your semester abroad, click here.

Budget Sheets

Academic Year

Scholarship Opportunities

Benjamin A. Gilman International Scholarship Program: Competition for awards for study abroad, for US citizen students who are receiving federal Pell Grant funding at a 2-year or 4-year college or university. 

David L. Boren Undergraduate Scholarships for Study Abroad: Supports undergraduate study abroad focusing on geographical areas, languages, and fields of study deemed critical to US national security. (Excludes study in US, Canada, Western Europe, Australia, and New Zealand.) These US government grants entail a service obligation. 

Next Steps

For information on the Penn Abroad application process, click here.

To open an application or learn more about the program, please click here to schedule an appointment with a Penn Abroad Global Programs Manager.

For a student perspective on life and academics in Shanghai, contact a Penn Abroad Past-Participant or Exchange Student.