Zuo Qihua, 30, a teacher and PhD candidate at the Hebei Agricultural University in Shijiazhuang in Hebei province, stabbed his wife in a teachers' dormitory in his wife's school in January 2011 after a quarrel over family chores, the Shanghai Daily reported.
The next day, Zuo told police that his wife had been murdered and turned himself in on the third day.
A people's court sentenced him to death with a two-year reprieve because he had surrendered, and had no criminal record.
But it was upgraded to a death sentence after his in-laws appealed to a higher court.
The prosecutors said Zuo did not confess to his crime when he reported the murder and turned himself in only on the third day.