Skip to main content

Imperial China Courses

Take free online courses in imperial China on edX today!

learn imperial china

learn imperial china

The History of Imperial China

Chinese history is vast and full of exciting twists and turns. China's contributions to the world are immeasurable, and many of those contributions happened during the time of China's imperial dynasties.

The Chinese empire once stretched out across lands, coming together under the rule of Qin, and soon made the Silk Road famous. China traces its rulers back to the Shang Dynasty and the mythical Xia Dynasty before that, although no written records exist.

The Imperial Dynasty handled many threats to its borders over its long existence, including the feared Genghis Khan and his Mongol Empire. Still, ultimately it was expanding colonialism from the west that ushered the end of dynasties.

Scholars typically point to the Qin Dynasty to the Qing Dynasty as the boundaries of Imperial China, 2000 years of dynastic rule that ended with nationalist and then communist movements. The last official emperor of China was Puyi, who was born in 1911 but lived to see the end of thousands of years of Chinese imperialism.

Learn about Imperial China offers courses designed in partnership with leading institutions. You'll take part in classes with students from around the world and can complete classes on your own time. Each class is free, but many have the option for official credit or certification if you need it.

It's time to expand your curiosity and your understanding with courses from edX and build skills you need or the knowledge you crave. Take a course here and find out what's possible.

Courses on Imperial China

Harvard has several courses ranging over the span of thousands of years. You can learn about the beginnings of Imperial China with the shortlived reign of the first Emperor of unified China, Qin Shi Huang (of the Great Wall of China fame), and the subsequent Han Dynasty.

You can also study the ends of Chinese Dynasties as well with their course on Invasions Rebellions and the Fall of Imperial China. You'll learn about beloved emperors like Qianlong, understand how the Chinese people lost faith in the imperial system.

The Value of the Past

From the beginnings of the empire to the Golden Age and the Five Dynasties, you can study the history of China with edX. Ancient china has fascinating beginnings, and as the country shaped into what it is today, it's taken many fascinating turns. Beijing today may be different, but remnants such as the Forbidden City remain today.

You can study the Ming Dynasty and the Song Dynasty, understand the influence of both Buddhism and Confucianism, and build the knowledge you want. EdX has all the resources you need.