Tsinghua University launched the Global Hybrid Classroom project this spring semester, which offers online courses for its students and others from overseas.
The courses are hosted by Tsinghua and several international institutions and students can obtain credits, the university said.
Seventeen Tsinghua's classes are open to the founding members of the Global MOOC (massive open online courses) Alliance, which includes St. Petersburg State University in Russia, Singapore's Nanyang Technological University and the Polytechnic University of Milan in Italy. A wide range of fields are covered including computer sciences, economics, humanities, architecture, civil and electronic engineering, and languages, the university said.
Students from St. Petersburg State University joined the project the week after its launch.
Tsinghua students will in the future also be able to join classes run by overseas universities including RWTH Aachen University in Germany, Rice University in Texas, the United States, and Canada's University of Toronto.
"The possibilities of communicating with people from different countries and cultural backgrounds on campus are limited," said Yang Bin, vice-president and provost of Tsinghua University.
"Through creative education technology and curriculum design, we can provide our students with a more imaginative space, lead them on a broader journey and help shape a resilient educational system that faces the globalization era and the future."
The project aims to provide students with a more international, diverse, and high-quality learning experience, and help them shape a global perspective, said Chen Wenguang, professor at Tsinghua's department of computer science and technology.
Shen Yuan, an associate professor at the university's department of electronic engineering, said it provides an opportunity for universities around the world to pool high-quality educational resources.
"It allows students from different regions and cultural backgrounds to exchange opinions and inspire each other in the same 'classroom', creating a more international and open education scenario," he said.
Liu Xiao, associate professor from Tsinghua's school of economics and management is running three online courses this semester.
It is an opportunity for foreign students to understand the development of the digital economy in China, she said. It also allows for in-depth exchanges between Chinese and foreign student and further promote the importance of recognizing international differences, Liu said.