National Sun Yat-Sen University

Kaohsiung, Taiwan

The exchange agreement

The exchange agreement between the University of Lethbridge and the National Sun Yat-sen University was signed in 1998.

Semester dates

Fall semester
Mid-September– late-January (or end December, for U of L exchange students needing to return for our spring semester.)
Orientation: mid-September
Suggested arrival: 1 week before classes
Spring semester
Mid-February – mid-June
Orientation: mid-February
Suggested arrival: 1 week before classes

The country

Taiwan is located roughly equidistant from Japan and Korea to the north, the Philippines to the south, and mainland China to the west. Taiwan makes a perfect launching point for further travels in East Asia.

Taiwan’s diverse topography and culture, and its vibrant commercial environment, make it a choice destination for traveler and business visitor alike. The island of Taiwan offers sunny beaches, richly forested mountains,
and sleepy countryside. Temples and monuments of both Chinese and Japanese heritage mix with high-rises in cities that keep going until dawn. Dazzling festivals, luxuriant hot springs, delectable dining —they all lie in store.

The vast majority of people in Taiwan are ethnic Chinese. Most are the descendants of immigrants from
the province of Fujian in mainland China. There are also a large number of people from all over China who came to Taiwan after World War II. In addition, there is a fairly large Hakka minority.

Mandarin Chinese is Taiwan’s language of government, education and the media. It is widely spoken anywhere you go in Taiwan, as well as in mainland China. Taiwanese — the dialect of Fujian Province — is spoken as a mother tongue by a majority of the population. The Hakka dialect is also spoken by a significant minority of Taiwanese.

For more information about Taiwan see sites such as

The city

Kaohsiung is the second largest city in Taiwan. It has a population of around 1.4 million throughout eleven city districts and a metropolitan population of 3.5 million. A cosmopolitan lifestyle and commercial bustle
characterize Kaohsiung. Kaohsiung is the island’s economic showcase, home to its largest international seaport and the only city besides Taipei with an international airport. The harbour is a major international container port, dry dock and ship salvaging center. The contrast with pastoral Tainan is sharp: wide streets are fronted by modern steel and glass towers.

Kaohsiung is more than just a large industrial centre: the city has several notable tourist attractions of its own and is close to many others. Shou Shan (Longevity Mountain) is a hill with temples, pavilions shaded terraces,
and impressive views of the city from the Martyrs Shrine at the top. For those who want relief from the heat of summer, the beach at Hsitzu Bay is at the city's edge, not far from Shoushan, and the black-sand Chichin Beach is on a narrow island which forms the harbour’s breakwater. The city is located roughly 4 to 5 hours away from Taipei by express train.

For more information about Kaohsiung, visit

The university

National Sun Yat-sen University (NSYSU) has 16 years of history, with 400 faculty members and 5,000 students. It is one of the most active and well regarded universities in Taiwan. The Faculty of Management at
NSYSU is considered by many to be among the top management programs in Taiwan.

Bounded on the east by a slow rising hill, the Longevity Hill, and facing west to the beautiful Hsitzu Bay and the Taiwan Strait, National Sun Yat-sen University has a campus that is quite unique in Taiwan, with the Port of Kaohsiung lying to the south and Mount Chai rising to the north. Moreover, the campus is located at a convenient 10 or 15 minute bus ride from the bustling Kaohsiung City and the busy Kaohsiung International Airport. The campus is well-planned to include gardens, beach, swimming pools and other facilities for extra-curricular activities. The weather in southern Taiwan is also very comfortable. It is warm and dry in the winter.

The library and computer facilities on campus are outstanding. The College of Management offers an undergraduate program, a master’s program in Business Administration as well as three commerce related doctoral degree programs.

For further information, check National Sun Yat-sen University's website and the Office of International Affairs.


A series of courses are offered in English each semester in the areas of management, social sciences, and culture. Exchange students study together with local students to learn about the business environment and culture in Taiwan. Various levels of Mandarin language classes are also offered to exchange students, and the University of Lethbridge requires that all its exchange students complete one of these courses. Past exchange students report classes and instructors at NSYSU to be excellent. Course work generally includes one midterm, one assignment, and one final per course.


Exchange students generally stay in an NSYSU student dormitory right on campus. There are separate dormitory buildings for male and female students. A shared room of four students is NT$6000 – 7500/semester (C$210 – 260) for each student per month. Students need to pay the full fee along with NT$1000 (C$36) damage deposit upon registration. The deposit will be returned when students
check out of the dormitory.

Bathrooms are shared with the sixteen students living on each floor. Internet connections are available in each room for students who have laptops. Alternatively, students can use the computer labs which are open 24 hours/day.

According to the National Health Insurance Act in Taiwan, all foreigners residing in Taiwan for more than four months, and holding an Alien Resident Certificate, are required to join the National Health Insurance
Program. Students are required to pay the NT$208/semester premium in full upon registration.


Buses are a convenient transportation tool in Kaohsiung. The ticket fee for the bus is NT$12 (C$0.50). Bus
No.1 runs to and from the University and the Railway Station. The bus stop is right in front of the university entrance. The Airport Shuttle runs to and from the Railway Station and the Kaohsiung Airport every 15
minutes. Students can take the Airport Shuttle from the Kaohsiung Airport to the Railway Station and transfer to Bus No.1 to the University.

Ferries play a key role in everyday transportation, and often play the role that buses do in other cities,
especially for transportation crossing the harbor. Inexpensive ferry service is available between different parts of Kaohsiung City as well as between the city and the Chijin District which lies on an island in the harbor.

A new metro system, the Kaohsiung Rapid Transit System, is currently under construction. A light rail route that circles central Kaohsiung City will also be constructed when funding becomes available.

Kaohsiung is served by the Taiwan Railway Administration's Western Line and Pingtung Line. The city is
roughly 4 to 5 hours away from Taipei by express train.

Visa requirements

Foreign nationals, who hold a valid passport or other necessary travel documents, can apply for a visiting visa
if they intend to stay in the Republic of China for less than six months for the purpose of transit, sightseeing, visiting relatives, paying a visit, attending a training course, receiving medical treatment or engaging in business or other activities.

International students staying in Taiwan for more than 6 months will have to apply for an Alien Resident Certificate. Each student will need to take the original and one copy each of passport, student ID, and two 2" × 2"photos to the Bureau of Consular Affairs, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, in Kaohsiung Office to apply for a resident visa. The visa will be issued within 10 days. The application fee for the resident visa is NT$1,800. Upon receiving the resident visa, the student will then need to apply for the Alien Resident Certificate in the Foreign Affairs Division of the Kaohsiung City Police Headquarters within 15 days.

The visa application process may have changed since this page was updated. Please email International Programs ( for more information.

For further details about this visa, contact the Consulate General of Taiwan in Vancouver:

Consulate General of Taiwan in Vancouver
2008-925 W Georgia St
Vancouver BC V6C 3L2

Tel: (604) 689-4111 ext.227
Fax: (604) 689-0101
Int. Students: (604) 689-4119

Office hours: 9:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. (Monday to Friday except Holidays)


Based on comments from our previous exchange students to Taiwan, the costs for the exchange are approximately as follows:

  • Housing: C$210 – 260 per/month (dormitory and home-stay) plus $36 damage deposit./li>
  • Textbooks: C$100 – 200
  • Food: many meals can be purchased at a cost of $2 – $4 ($200 per month)
  • Transportation: $11/month
  • Insurance (mandatory in Taiwan): C$7/semester
  • Visa: C$200

Videos and photos

View a video clip (MOV, 00:03:13) of a Taiwanese exchange student, as well as the talk about the Taiwan exchange at our February 2005 UofL International Program Info Sessions. A series of photos about Taiwan and NSYSU can be viewed in a PowerPoint presentation (2.4 MB, 17 screens) created by another Taiwanese exchange student.

Student contacts

"Coming to Taiwan was one of the greatest adventures of my life! The university in Kaohsiung is an amazing location for exchange students to come and study in their field of learning while also familiarizing themselves with the Chinese language."

Garrett Mellon, UofL exchange student to Taiwan

"Things here are great! It's kind of sad now though because it is just abouttime to go home. I have had the chance to see all of Taiwan and it has been an amazing experience!"

Sarah Davis, UofL exchange student to NSYSU

Former and current UofL exchange students to National Sun Yat-sen University, as well as our current incoming exchange students from Taiwan are happy to talk to students interested in the exchange. To request their
contact information, please email