School of Foreign Studies


About the School

The School of Foreign Studies (SFS), Nanjing University, traces its history back to a three-year English program initiated in June 1917 which became a four-year program when the Department of English was established in 1920.

Building on its academic heritage, SFS has now developed into an institution of seven departments: English, French, German, Spanish, Russian, Japanese, and Korean, with a total enrollment of over 1,200 students in BA, MA, and Ph.D. programs designed for sustained learning and interdisciplinary opportunities.

It is devoted to excellence in teaching and research, and to nurturing future leaders who are able to make a difference around the world. With full commitment to this mission, SFS is constantly striving to match its standards with the nation’s growth and its students’ interest and learning objectives, and prepares qualified young people to succeed in such competitive and demanding professions as diplomacy, international affairs, education, cultural exchange, journalism, publicity, trade and finance. Over the decades, many SFS graduates have taken leadership positions in these and other professions.

At SFS, faculty and students work together to create a fertile and stimulating environment for learning and furthering our knowledge of seven different languages and their cultures.

A key asset of SFS is its faculty which consists of a non-European Member of the Academy of Europe and many distinguished scholars who are active in research and dedicated to education. Over half of its 96 faculty members are professors and associate professors, in addition to 25 international faculty members including Jean-Marie Gustave Le Clézio, Nobel Prize winner for literature.

SFS sponsors a wide range of research projects through its research institutions such as the Center for the Study of Contemporary Foreign Literature and Culture, the Institute of Foreign Literature, the Institute of Foreign Linguistics, the Institute of Studies in Spoken English, and Bilingual Dictionary Research Center. SFS is also affiliated with China Association for the Study of American Literature.

Research at SFS covers a wide range of subjects in world literature, linguistics, translation studies, cultural studies, and literary theory. In 2012 it was ranked second by China Discipline Ranking issued by China Academic Degrees & Graduate Education Development Center.



BA Programs (Year of Establishment)

  • English (1917)

  • French (1952)

  • German (1947)

  • Russian (1947)

  • Spanish (1964)

  • Japanese (1972)

  • Korean (2006)


MA Programs

  • English Language and Literature

  • French Language and Literature

  • German Language and Literature

  • Russian Language and Literature

  • Spanish Language and Literature

  • Japanese Language and Literature

  • Korean Language and Literature

  • General and Applied Linguistics

  • Master of Translating and Interpreting

Discipline Areas

Foreign Languages and Literature

Ph.D. Programs

  • English Language and Literature (1981, National Key Discipline)

  • French Language and Literature (1981, Provincial Key Discipline)

  • German Language and Literature

  • Russian Language and Literature

  • East Asian Languages and Literature (Japanese & Korea)

  • General and Applied Linguistics


Postdoctoral Program

Foreign Languages and Literatures


Affiliated Research Institutions

  • Center for the Study of Contemporary Foreign Literature and Culture: established in 2009, commissioned and co-funded by Jiangsu Provincial Education Department and Nanjng University.

  • Institute of Foreign Literature:set up in 1964 as a research center for European and American Culture and commissioned by the Ministry of Education to expand into this foreign literature institute in May 1980, one of the country’s three earliest foreign literature and culture research institutes. The institute publishes a worldly renowned literary quarterly Contemporary Foreign Literature indexed in CSSCI.

  • Institute of Foreign Linguistics: set up in 2008 with a focus on research in such fields as syntax, pragmatics, cognitive linguistics, pragmatics, sociolinguistics, discourse analysis, semiotics, second language acquisition, and foreign language teaching.

  • Institute of Studies in Spoken English: started in 1991, both as an institute for research on spoken English and as the administration office for the annual national oral English tests for English majors (TEM-4 and TEM-8), sponsored by China National Advisory Committee on University Foreign Language Major Education.

  • Center for Russian Studies:set up in 2013 and sponsored by the Ministry of Education, focusing on academic cooperation and exchanges between the university and Russian institutions in many fields of Russian Studies.

  • Center for Korean Studies: set up in 2010 and aimed at promoting Sino-Korean cultural exchanges and joint research, with a focus on Korean language, literature, history and East Asian relations.

  • Chinese-Nordic Cultural Centre: set up in 2009 and aimed at promoting cultural exchanges and research collaboration between China and the Nordic countries. Its major fields of research include literature and culture, environmental issues and international relations.

  • Bilingual Dictionary Research Center: set up in 1988 with a focus on bilingual lexicography, translation studies, corpus linguistics, language policy and bilingual terminology.

Other research institutes and centers affiliated with SFS include Institute of Translation Studies, Institute of Comparative Studies in Sino-German Culture, Center for Australian Studies, Center for Irish Studies, Center for Canadian Studies, and Center for the Study of Sino-Japanese Culture.



Xianlin Campus, No. 163, Xianlin Avenue, Qixia District, Nanjing City

Code: 210023

Tel: 86-25-89682323

For more information visit the school's website

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