This paper serves as a historical study of the development of China’s education for international students, based on which the authors try to summarize its effects on promoting China’s hard and soft powers. Since the implementation of the Reform and Opening-up Policy, the education of international students in China has made remarkable progress, boosting the internationalization process of China’s development. Its experience and implication deserve close observation and analysis. The paper uses data collected from Chinese government documents, public files and education reports, aiming to illustrate the facts and characteristics of the three stages of China’s international students education since 1978. The study was conducted using the historical approach to research, while combining the perspective of Education Science, Sociology and International Relations. The paper presents conclusions that the development of education for international students in China has: promoted the oversea popularity of Chinese culture and China’s soft power; created a positive effect on promoting bilateral relations and attracting foreign investment; facilitated human resources exchange; accelerated the internationalization process of Chinese universities. With the continuous growth of overall national strength and reputation, education for international students in China still has great potential.