The majority of Chinese students during this era (115 out of 381) hailed from Guangdong Province. Jiangsu, Zhejiang, Fujian, and Hebei Provinces also sent significant numbers of students to MIT. Owing to this geographical diversity, and to the predominance of dialects (Cantonese, Fujianese, Shanghainese, etc.) at this time, the Chinese students at MIT used a wide range of systems (not modern standard Mandarin pinyin) to romanize their names. This website follows the Chinese Students Directory in giving the romanizations of the Chinese students' names. A glossary of Chinese names is provided in the Chinese Students Directory, and can be viewed in the digitized version of this work.

The main sources used in compiling the student profiles are: MIT Chinese Students Directory: For the Past Fifty Years, 1931; Class of '84 MIT: Twenty-fifth Anniversary Book, 1909; the Technology Review; The Tech; the Technique; the MIT Course Catalogue; MIT's Reports to the President; Who's Who of American Returned Students (You Mei tongxue lu), Beijing: Tsinghua College, 1917; CEM Connections; The Thomas La Fargue Digital Collection (Washington State University Libraries); The Chinese Students' Monthly; Jiaoyu zhi qiao: cong Qinghua dao Mashengligong (Bridge of Education: From Tsinghua to MIT), Hong Kong: Cosmos Point Limited, 2011; and various materials held at MIT's Institute Archives and Special Collections.