How to learn Chinese? Dulguun shares her experiences.

How do you learn Chinese? Its what everyone wants to know.

We are pleased to welcome Dulguun who is going to introduce how she learnt Chinese

Dulguun’s main tips are:

– To find a way that you enjoy
– Watching movies and learning 100 words everyday can surely build up over time

If you have a really strong motivation, then you can often find a way to accomplish your goal.

Why do you want to learn Chinese?

Many people spend a long time to learn Chinese but it doesn’t need to be difficult. In order to learn Chinese efficiently you just need to understand a few key concepts and have an effective plan on how to learn Chinese.

About Chinese

Chinese Characters

There are thousands of characters. In order to learn Chinese you need to understand characters. It might seem complicated to learn so many characters  but they have a lot of similarities and can be quite easy and fascinating  to learn.

They are made up of radicals which are small building blocks (similar to hieroglyphics. The radicals can infer the meaning or the sound. First you need to learn the radicals and the origins of the characters and it’s quite easy to understand the rest of the characters based on the main ones that are most common. Most of the words are made of two or more characters. So if you learn one character you can guess the words meaning. There are 214 radicals and 5000 characters you need to learn for proficiency. You just need an efficient way to learn these and you can think of it like uploading it to your brain. I will introduce this later.

The Chinese Tones

The Tones are very important in Chinese and the same sound can have a different meaning with different tones. In English where sentences different tones don’t change the word meaning but they change the emphasis sentence.  There are 4 key tones and its really important that you understand these tones. You need to practice these and make sure you speak with the right tones.

Chinese Grammar is Simple

The good news is that grammar is quite simple in Chinese compared to European languages.

HSK Levels

This is like IELTS. There are 6 HSK levels. Each level is twice as difficult as the one before. HSK 1 – 6. HSK 4 is needed to get into Chinese universities. HSK 5 is good enough to work in China and you can read most newspapers. HSK 6 is the highest level and general overall proficiency. In HSK 1-3 you don’t need chinese charactres.

What is the difference between Chinese language and Mandarin?

Chinese is a written language that is spoken, but English is a spoken language that is written. You can tell the sound from the english letters. There are many different Chinese dialects in China’s different regions but the most widely used one is Mandarin which is based on the Beijing dialect. This is known as the standard Chinese.

Written Chinese has two versions: simplified and traditional. Chinese was simplified in 1949 in the mainland to help promote literacy rates and ease of communication. Hong Kong and Taiwan still use traditional characters. All the different dialects use the same characters in China are the same, but they just pronounce it differently.

How do you write Chinese on a computer?

Writing Chinese characters is quite easy with the input method “Pinyin”. You basically write how it sounds and choose the character. You can also write the character strokes if you like

How to learn Chinese? 

Then you need a plan on how to learn Chinese. You basically need to combine

Compound Interest

Its super important to understand compound interest. Just making it a habit is the most efficient instead of in bits, and you need to keep doing it over time.

A structured course is really important

You can self learn Chinese, but its not that efficient because you don’t know what you don’t know. Its much more efficient to get direction from a chinese teacher and follow a Chinese course. You can choose an efficient course to follow from 0 to proficiency.  If you can go to China you can take classes in person to speed up learning, or you can take 1 on 1. 1 on 1 is the most efficient way. Through BLCU you can go through the whole course in around 500 hours. If you take 12 hours per week you can get HSK 6 in under 1 year. You can do some part full time and other parts part time here.

Learning vocabulary

Anki App is the best way. Learn the basics, then self study through Anki app. Spaced recognition is very efficient

Practice speaking and listening

You need to practice speaking and listening. Just getting into conversation, and making a record of new words, making mistakes and practicing. Lingbe is a great app for this.

How to find Chinese courses

Have a look at some of the Chinese programs here.

Founder and CEO at China Admissions. Originally from UK🇬🇧, based in Beijing. Studied at Peking University & BLCU. Preparing for HSK 6. Hope we can help more talented international students have the same amazing experiences and opportunities that I have had
Richard Coward

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