Faculty of PhilosophyChinese Studies

In the Chinese Studies academic programme, students learn about both traditional and contemporary aspects of China, including the role played by China in the greater world and the associated diversified exchange processes that link both China’s history and its present-day existence to other regions.

During the degree programme, students will learn the Chinese language and acquire fundamental knowledge of China’s history, culture, philosophy, literature, and current political and economic structures.

Special Features and Characteristics

At the Heidelberg University Institute of Chinese Studies, the diversity and bandwidth of China-related topics covered is unique within Germany universities. Approximately 30 researchers within five teaching chairs study China in its historical depth from a number of different perspectives, using a variety of approaches and methods. Characteristic for the programme is its high degree of integration within international research and education as well as the close collaboration with a large number of German and international affiliates, including, in particular, the Heidelberg Centre for Transcultural Studies (HCTS) and the newly-established Centre for Asian and Transcultural Studies (CATS). In Heidelberg, Sinology therefore is the study of China and its role in the world in the context of a wide-reaching international network.


The Institute of Chinese Studies belongs to the “Centre for Asian and Transcultural Studies” (CATS), Heidelberg University’s Asian campus. Here, over twenty professorships lead research on South Asia, South East Asia and East Asia from the perspectives of a variety of disciplines. A distinguishing characteristic is the high degree of integration within international research activities and the close collaboration with national and international partner institutions. In Heidelberg, the study of Sinology involves an examination of China and its role in the world in the framework of a wide-reaching international network.

Occupational Areas

Sinologists enjoy professions in the following areas: 

  • the media 
  • communications and translation agencies 
  • training and consulting institutions 
  • tourism 
  • universities and research institutes  


Studierender Sinologie Uni Heidelberg

I used to study economics, which then led me to Chinese studies in order to be able to work in business consulting abroad.

Marcel Wilhelm, 23, Chinese studies, 1st semester Bachelor