School of Languages, Linguistics and Film

Chinese Language & Culture Modules

Why study Mandarin Chinese?

  • you may be interested in the language and culture as a student of language yourself;
  • you may be planning to visit China and/or take part in an exchange programme;
  • you may wish to improve your employability on graduating from QMUL by demonstrating your international attributes;
  • you may be teaching or studying on one of QMUL's joint programmes in Beijing or Nanchang.

Whatever your reason, you will find a friendly welcome at the Institute, and classes which will quickly help to improve your language skills.

  • We also offer  for those who wish to study Mandarin Chinese for Specific Purposes, or need individual tuition for other reasons.

If you're not sure of your level, then complete the Chinese diagnostic test [DOC 74KB] and email to confucius@qmul.ac.uk 

Confucius Institute Scholarships

Students will have the opportunity to be considered for a Confucius Institute scholarship, which is based on merit, to the top achieving students on their Chinese language and culture course. The scholarships will be a refund of fees paid at the beginning of the year. You do not need to apply for these scholarships as you will be automatically eligible once you have paid your fees.

  • Scholarships awarded on merit demonstrated by passing the HSK test for their level (teacher to define the level) + 400-500 words on how the Chinese course has helped, or will help, them to develop in their academic or professional career
  • HSK test preparation will be free for those who achieve 80% attendance by the date of registration for the test
  • Students to pay for their own test

Chinese Language and Culture Ia

Chinese Language & Culture Ia: Syllabus               

The course will consist of the following units:

1 Personal Information 

  • Talking about yourself and others.
  • Greeting and meeting people formally.
  • Jobs and nationalities.
  • Talking about your family and friends.

2 Food and Drink        

  • Ordering at the bar or café. Calling for attention.  Settling bills.  Numbers
  • At the restaurant:  Eating habits. Giving and understanding simple recipes.

3 Finding your way- Travel and tourism

  • Asking and saying where places are.  Giving directions
  • Transport. Buying tickets (train, bus). Enquiring about departure times.
  • At the tourist office.  Giving more complicated directions.
  • Describing places: your country, town or village.

4 Accommodation

  • At home.  Saying where you live.  Addresses and telephone numbers. Describing your house.
  • Booking into a hotel.   Describing what places are like, facilities.  Days, months and dates

5 The working day and leisure

  • Talking about what you and others usually do every day and talking about your free time activities. (present, different persons).

6 Describing  

  • Describing a person's character and appearance.
  • Describing objects.

7 Shopping   

  • Buying food. Types of shops and produce.  Weight/quantity.  Paying: numbers
  • Buying , clothes, books, presents and other items. Descriptions: material, size, colour.  Paying. More numbers.

8 Expressing likes and dislikes

  • Leisure, hobbies.  Inviting, accepting, refusing, apologising.
  • Giving excuses and explanations.

9 The future

  • Deciding what to do and where to go. Talking about the near future (tomorrow, next week)

Chinese Language & Culture Ia: Objective

SPEAKING:         

  • Maintain a conversation on the above topics and in the different situations mentioned above and express feelings.
  • Speak confidently and accurately when using language with which they are familiar.
  • Use the appropriate pronunciation and intonation.

LISTENING:

  •  Understand and respond, in different contexts, to language with which they are familiar. 
  •  Understand the main points of a conversation or spoken text, such as a short radio broadcast.
  • Extract specific information from a wider range of material.

READING:

  • Understand a variety of texts which include some complex and unfamiliar language (e.g.: notices, emails, short newspaper and magazine articles).
  • Infer the meaning of some unfamiliar language from the context.
  • Extract general and detailed information.

WRITING:

  • Fill in forms and charts with personal details.
  • Write texts (emails, notes) using sentences and language with which they are familiar with to describe everyday activity and express own interests.
  • Begin to write in Mandarin / Pinyin.

Chinese Language and Culture Ib

Chinese Language and Culture Ib: Syllabus

The course will consist of the following units: 

1 Work and Career

  • Jobs, professions, studies.  Job descriptions.  How to write a CV
  • How to fill in application forms. Job adverts and interviews.

2 Transport

  • Public and Private transport: taxi, hiring a car, garage petrol/repairs.

3 Health   

  • Parts of the body.  Illnesses and remedies.  Advice.

4 Problems               

  • Describing what has happened to you.
  • Describing lost property and personal belongings.  Reporting a theft.  Revision of description (objects and people).

5 The past                                   

  • Yesterday, last weekend, last holiday.  Where you went, what you did.
  • Talking about what you and others used to do before and comparing with the present.

6 Autobiographies  

  • Talking about yourself and others in the past and now.
  • Changes. 

Chinese Language and Culture Ib: Objectives 

SPEAKING.         

  • Take part in conversations and discussions which contain unpredictable elements.
  • Express ideas and opinions about familiar topics.
  • Speak with fluency, good intonation and accuracy using the appropriate register when talking about familiar topics.
  • Speak using a variety of tenses.

LISTENING        

  • Understand language in which opinions and different points of view are argued.
  • Use context to understand unfamiliar language.
  • Extract general and specific information from a wide range of material.

READING            

  • Understand longer texts which contain unfamiliar language, inferring the meaning from context.  (e.g.emails, brochures, magazine articles..)
  • Understand texts that express abstract ideas as well as facts and opinions.
  • Extract general and specific information from a wide range of material.

WRITING            

  • Write longer texts using language with which you are familiar and about familiar topics, including future and past events.
  • Express ideas and opinions on familiar topics.
  • Write more accurately.

Chinese language & Culture IIa

Chinese Language and Culture IIa: Syllabus

The course will consist of the following units: 

1 Professional and business introductions

  • Meeting people in formal and professional situations.

 2 Work and Career

  • How to write formal letters (for information, of application).  How to make and receive formal telephone calls.

 3 The future and the conditional

  • Talking about what will happen or would happen. Tourism and ecology.

4 Advice, prohibitions            

  • Asking if one can or can't do something. Talking about what should or shouldn’t be done. Health and sport.

Description in the past

  • Describing people and places in the past.  Then and now.  Differences and changes.  Describing situations in the past.

6 Narrating

  • Talking about what happened.  Telling stories (films, plays)

7 Opinions

  • Expressing points of view, opinions and preferences. Comparing.
  • Free time: cinema.  TV, theatre, music, books.

Chinese language & Culture IIa: Objectives    

SPEAKING          

  • Take part in and initiate a free conversation and discussion on more concrete topics.
  • Use a variety of vocabulary and structures to achieve a good level of communication in the areas studied.
  • Speak fluently with little error and with appropriate pronunciation and intonation.

LISTENING       

  • Understand a variety of language in more concrete situations with    some abstract concepts and ideas.
  • Understand and summarize narrative speech, news, films, containing opinions and ideas.

READING                            

  • Emails, stories, news, etc., especially narrative which express different opinions and points of view.
  • Read independently with some help.

WRITING  

  • Write about factual and concrete subjects. (emails, forms, stories ...) developing arguments and giving opinions.

Chinese Language & Culture IIb

Chinese Language and Culture IIb: Syllabus

The course will consist of the following units:

Revision

  •    Revise structures from Intermediate I

2 Narrating: the news

  • The Press and radio news. Talking about the media.

3 Instructions  

  • Giving instructions, orders. Advertising.  People's rights.     

4 Advice   

  • Advising, suggesting.  Making decisions. Consumerism

5 Likes and dislikes  

  • Talking about what we like and dislike in people, in society.  Politics.

Wishes   

  • Talking about wishes and ambitions, dreams.  Famous people. Women in society.

Doubt and Possibility 

  • Expressing possibility and impossibility (eg. talking about the environment, life in the future, etc.)

Chinese Language & Culture IIb: OBJECTIVES

SPEAKING          

1. Take part in and initiate free conversation and discussion with fluency and accuracy on a variety of more abstract topics.

2.  Use a wide range of vocabulary and structures to express opinions and feelings.

3.  Speak fluently and accurately with good pronunciation in various registers.

LISTENING        

1. Understand a wide range of concrete and abstract language and a variety of accents.

2.  Understand, summarize and report on concrete and abstract subjects expressing opinions and feelings.

READING            

1. Understand long texts which express opinions, ideas and feelings (opinion articles, extracts from books etc.)

2.  Read independently a variety of texts.

WRITING            

1.  Write about concrete and abstract subjects arguing different points of view and expressing feelings.

2.  Write more accurately and using a variety of structures.

Chinese Language & Culture IIIa

Language & Culture IIIa: Syllabus

Suggested topics:

1 Receiving visitors from the TL countries

  • Explaining local attractions to visitors.
  • Social Relations.
  • Explaining the structure and organization of your department or company. What services are available.

2 Study abroad

  • Moving to study in another country.
  • Different aspects of student life in the country where the TL is spoken.  Practical matters: how to cope with bureaucracy, travel arrangements, accommodation, facilities, climate, etc.
  • Careers: describing change and future developments.

3 Jobs

  • Recruitment:  Matching job advertisements with covering letters.
  • Salaries and money.  Studying job advertisements.
  • Selecting candidates and job interviews.  The interview.
  • Choosing the right person for the job.  Describing own job and place of work.
  • Unemployment and training for the unemployed.
  • Preparing a CV and a letter of application.
  • Interview role-play.

4 The Media. Advertising

  • The  Media: television, newspapers ...
  • Advertising slogans, planning an advertising campaign, promotional leaflets.
  • Advertising in different countries.

5 The environment

  • Agricultural and industrial developments in the TL countries.
  • Environmental infrastructures.
  • Water. Problems of drought. Ecological tourism. Industry, Business and the Environment.
  • Energy: solar, wind. nuclear

Language & Culture IIIa: Objectives 

READING

  • Use a variety of reading techniques in the TL, such as skimming, scanning, global and intensive reading.
  • To infer, sequence and match information.
  • Be able to read brochures, catalogues documents, abstracts, articles and books of general interest.

WRITING

  • Take notes, complete forms and make leaflets.
  • Write emails, formal letters, articles and documents
  • Write short essays, summaries, short reports and presentations.

LISTENING

  • Listen for gist and global comprehension. 
  • Interact in discussions.
  • Understand radio and television programmes.
  • Using the telephone.  Making and receiving a phone call. Listening to voicemail messages.
  • Understand and follow instructions.
  • Understand lectures, talks and general explanations in the TL.

SPEAKING

  • To ask and answer formal and informal questions.
  • To initiate a conversation, to make statements, to agree, disagree, interrupt, apologise, ask for clarification.
  • Making and receiving phone calls, leaving messages.
  • To take active part in discussions, debates and meetings.
  • To be able to present and report information.

Chinese Language & Culture IIIb

Chinese Language & Culture IIIb: Syllabus 

Suggested topics

1 A professional visit abroad

  • Travelling, arranging visits abroad.
  • Introducing yourself as a representative for your department/company and supplying details.
  • Speaking about your firm or department, writing to introduce it.
  • Making professional presentations in the TL about subject of interest (scientific papers, technical, sales presentations).

2 Meetings and negotiations

  • How to carry out a general and professional conversation in the TL.
  • Techniques such as gestures, ways of interacting, interruptions, asking for clarification, etc.  Strategies for successful meetings in the TL:  asking for clarification, interrupting, agreeing, disagreeing, summarising, giving an opinion,asking for an opinion. How to take and write minutes in TL.
  • Organising and taking part in a meeting.
  • Writing the minutes of a meeting.

3 Transport

  • The world of communications and transport:  Roads, motorways, planes, facilities for the disabled, etc.
  • Road congestion and new road building. Traffic volume, traffic rules: speed. Public transport system.
  • Major plans to improve transport communications

4 The world of communications.

  • Study the world of communications in TL: Telephones, computers, etc.
  • Explore how these are developing in the countries of the TL
  • Film

5 Urban infrastructure.

  • Urban development: industrial environment, previous and current.  Cities of the future.

6 Business profile

  • The business environment.  The organisation structure.
  • Conditions of work.
  • Names and titles of personnel within a company or Department, identifying the structure.

7 Manufacturing and change

  • The different types of manufacturing organisations.  An explanation of the changes in technology in manufacturing and the effects of these changes on peoples’ working lives in the country of the TL.
  • To develop a knowledge of the vocabulary of the different industries and products.

Chinese Language & Culture IIIb: Objectives 

READING

  • Use a variety of reading techniques in the TL, such as skimming, scanning, global and intensive reading.
  • To infer, sequence and match information.
  • Read maps, brochures, catalogues, graphs, diagrams and reference data.
  • Be able to read documents, bibliographies, abstracts, articles and books of general interest and of a technical and professional nature.

WRITING

  • Take notes, complete forms and make leaflets.
  • Write emails, formal letters, articles and documents
  • Write essays, summaries, short professional papers, reports and presentations.
  • Write about own experiments and research in the TL, describing procedures and instructions.

LISTENING

  • Listen for gist and global comprehension. 
  • Understand the different accents and language varieties in the various regions and countries where the TL is spoken.
  • Interact in discussions.
  • Understand radio and television programmes.
  • Using the telephone.  Making and receiving a phone call. Listening to voicemail messages.
  • Understand and follow instructions.
  • Understand lectures, talks, general and technical explanation in the TL.

SPEAKING

  • To ask and answer formal and informal questions.
  • To initiate a conversation, to make statements, to agree, disagree, interrupt, apologise, ask for clarification.
  • Making and receiving phone calls, leaving messages.
  • To take active part in discussions, debates and meetings.
  • To be able to present and report information. To make enquiries and to seek information.
  • To introduce oneself (talk about own research, and explain scientific or technical work in the TL). 
  • To present a project.