This Tsinghua University course (undergraduate-level) is a part of the Global Hybrid Classroom (GHC) Certificate program.

The program has four modules: Public Finance, Economic Development, International Trade, and Analysis of International Macroeconomic Policies, and will introduce research on Applied Economics. In each module, main theories of a field will be introduced, and the practice and policies related to China’s reform and opening-up will be discussed and analyzed.

Students are expected to master the basic theories of Public Finance, Development Economics, International Trade, and International Macroeconomics, and understand China’s economic-related policies.


  • The program will be taught in English, and students are required to be proficient in English.
  • Students are encouraged to take the following courses before applying to the program: Principles of Economics, Intermediate Microeconomics, Intermediate Macroeconomics, and university-level Mathematics.

“Applied Economics: Theory and Policy” certificate is compromised of 4 courses:

Public Finance studies the role of the public sector in the economy. In this course, we will study the economic foundations that justify the existence of the public sector, and the economic theories that describe the role of the public sector. We concern when the governments should intervene the economy and how they should do so, including what options they have and what are the effects of alternative policies. The focus is on the government taxes and spending activities. We will also study governments’ policies in practice, and how the policies affect individual and corporate decision-making and welfare.

Public Finance syllabus (Autumn 2021).pdf

Binzhen Wu
Associate Professor,
Department of Economics,
School of Economics and Management,
Tsinghua University

Binzhen Wu is an Associate Professor at Department of Economics, School of Economics and Management, Tsinghua University. Her research interests include Public Economics, Development Economics, and Applied Microeconomics. She received her Ph.D. in Economics from University of Wisconsin-Madison in 2006, Master in Economics from Peking University in 2001, and Bachelor in Nuclear Engineering from Xi’an Jiaotong University in 1998. Courses Taught: Public Economics (graduate), Public Finance (undergraduate), Intermediate Macroeconomics.
She presided over research projects funded by National Natural Science Foundation and Xiao Lin Shi Research Fund. She has published papers in Games and Economics Behavior, Journal of Development Economics, Journal of Economic Perspectives, Journal of Comparative Economics, Economic Development and Cultural Change, China Quarterly, and etc.

Development economics is a course involving economic problems and policies of those countries that have not yet reached the level of economic well-being observed in the western world. This course particularly emphasizes development issues in China. At the completion of this course, students will be familiar with theories of development and their applications in the real world. Students will have a better understanding of a number of topics that shed light on the development process, including poverty, inequality, education, the role of the government, and population issues. Students are also expected to be familiar with relevant institutions and policies in China. Students will be trained to conduct their own research by using theories learned in class and analyzing real-world data. They will also present their research results in class, which can improve their ability of public speaking and intellectual interactions.

Development Economics syllabus (Spring 2022).pdf

Xinzheng Shi
associate professor
Department of Economics
School of Economics and Management
Tsinghua University

Xinzheng Shi is an associate professor in the Department of Economics in the School of Economics and Management at Tsinghua University. He received Ph.D. degree from the University of Michigan-Ann Arbor. His research focuses on the behaviors of households and firms in the labor markets, effects of population aging, human capital and environmental issues in the economic development process, and firms’ behaviors in responses to tax policies. Xinzheng Shi has published papers in journals such as Review of Economics and Statistics, Journal of Development Economics, Economic Research Journal (in Chinese), Journal of Management World (in Chinese), and China Economic Quarterly (in Chinese).

This course aims to provide students with a survey of fundamentals in international economics, in both theory and empirics. Topics include essential theories of international trade and empirical evidence. Through the course, you will have a better understanding about why countries trade, what they trade, the benefits and costs of trade, and the motivations for and the effects of government trade policies.

International Economics syllabus (Spring 2022).pdf

Hong Ma
professor of economics,
School of Economics and Management,
Tsinghua University

Dr. Hong Ma is currently a professor of economics in the School of Economics and Management, Tsinghua University, and an associate editor for the Journal of Comparative Economics and China Economic Review. He graduated from Fudan University in 2002 with a B.A. (High Honors) in Economics. He received a Ph.D. in economics from the University of California at Davis in 2009. At Tsinghua University, Dr. Ma teaches International Economics for Ph.D. students, Chinese Economy for EMBA students, International Economics, Chinese Economy and Game Theory for undergraduates. He received teaching excellence awards in 2009, 2015, 2020 and 2021.
Dr. Ma’s research mainly focuses on international trade and Chinese economy. His work has been published in the Economic Journal, Journal of International economics, Review of Economics and Statistics, and other journals.

This course is a field course in International Macroeconomics. The course develops a theoretical framework for the analysis of the determinants of international capital movements, trade imbalances, and nominal and real exchange rates. The theoretical framework is then used as the basis for the discussion of policy issues such as the emergence of the U.S. as the largest foreign debtor, global trade imbalances, developing-country debt crises, the European financial crisis, exchange-rate-based inflation stabilization, currency unions, debt default, balance-of-payment crises, and the effect of the great recession of 2008 on the world economy.

International Macroeconomics syllabus (Spring 2021).pdf

Tuo Chen
Assistant Professor,
School of Economics and Management,
Tsinghua University.

Tuo Chen, Assistant Professor, School of Economics and Management, Tsinghua University. Professor Chen received his Ph.D. in Economics from Columbia University in 2018. His main approach in research is to use micro-level data in Macroeconomics. He is interested in productivity, inequality, and macroeconomic questions in general. He teaches Advanced Macroeconomics and Intermediate Macroeconomics.

Global Hybrid Courses (GHC) is currently open to current students from overseas partner universities of Tsinghua University, and it’s free. If your university (instructor or students) would like to join the program and experience what it is like to teach and learn in a truly global classroom, please contact the Assistant Secretary-General of the Global MOOC Alliance at or

How to attend our GHC courses?

  • Tsinghua University will send the list of GHC courses to overseas partner universities every semester. These universities will notify students to enroll and priority will be given to students eager to take part
  • Students from overseas partner universities have to complete the courses required by the GHC Certificate within a specified time. After completing each course, they will receive a GHC transcript issued by Tsinghua University.
  • Students from overseas partner universities attending Tsinghua’s postgraduate courses, whose own universities do not allow for credit transfer, can enjoy credit exemption if they study for postgraduate degrees at Tsinghua University in the future.

How to apply for the certificate upon completion of the required courses?

  • Please send your name, university, and GHC transcripts to us at

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