I just created Chinese names for my JOUR415 (communication research methods) students for the spring 2015 semester. I keep four things in mind when I create Chinese names for American students:
1) The Chinese name sounds similar to the English name.
2) The Chinese name sounds like a real Chinese name.
3) If possible, The Chinese surname would match the English surname. If not possible, the Chinese surname would come from the English given name.
4) The Chinese name expresses some traits, characteristics, aspirations, cultural values, and philosophical beliefs that students would like to identify with.