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Chinese 1 (LL130)



Absolute Beginners only. People with some knowledge of Mandarin will NOT be allowed to take this module. Please note, final year students are not normally permitted to take non-accelerated beginners modules.

Main Objectives:
  • To enable students to acquire simple sentence patterns and ways of expressions.
  • To develop basic skills in speaking, listening, reading and writing in a range of predictable everyday situations.
  • To begin to develop strategies for learning Chinese.
  • To achieve A1 and to work towards A2 standard of the CEFR (Common European Framework of reference).

This 30 CREDIT module is also available for 24 CREDITS.


Our aim, Covid-19 arrangements permitting, is one weekly blended session (3 hours) for 21 weeks, combining asynchronous tutor-guided study and online synchronous seminar (small group) via Teams.

Some independent study will also be set.

Students are reminded that 1 credit = 10 hours of study, therefore the minimum expected amount of study is 240 hours, which averages over 10 hours per week. A substantial amount of independent study is therefore required.


Wednesday: 17:00-20:00


Term 1: Interim test

Term 2: Listening test

Term 3: Reading test, Writing test, Speaking test


Zhiqiong Chen

Core Texts:

  • New Practical Chinese Reader, Textbook 1 (Units 1-11), Liu Xun. Beijing Language University Press, 2010. (ISBN: 9787561926239)
  • New Practical Chinese Reader, Workbook 1 (Units 1-11), Liu Xun. Beijing Language University Press, 2010. (ISBN:9787561926222)
Additional Materials:
  • Oxford Starter Chinese Dictionary, Oxford University Press, 2000. (ISBN: 0198602588)
  • Basic Chinese: A Grammar and Workbook (2nd Edition), Yip Po-Ching and Don Rimmington, Routledge, 2009. (ISBN:0-415-47215-6)
  • Yufa ! A practical guide to Mandarin Chinese.

Course Description:

Based on an interactive approach, the module will focus on grasping speech sounds and tones, acquiring essential listening and speaking skills, and practising basic reading and writing techniques in characters. The stimulus material (aural, written and visual) not only provides an introduction to the language but also offers students an insight into Chinese culture. The text-book provides written text in both characters and pinyin, together with an underscored English translation. The workbook, however, gives greater prominence to characters. There are homework and online resources which consolidate and assist classroom learning. Please note, final year students are not normally permitted to take non-accelerated beginners modules.


Communicative functions

  • Greetings and general courtesy
  • ordering drinks and food
  • identifying people and getting personal information
  • finding one's way around
  • talking about one's major and one's university
  • talking about one's family
  • making an appointment
  • celebrating one's birthday
  • talking about one's likes and dislikes
  • shopping

Grammatical content

  • word order in Chinese sentences
  • basic sentence structures
  • different forms of questions
  • attributives expressing possession
  • some commonly used adverbs
  • numbers from 1-100 and numeral-measure words as attributives
  • prepositional phrase
  • sentences with double objects
  • sentences with serial verb phrases

Learning Outcomes:

On successful completion of this module, students will be able to:

  • Gain insights into everyday life in the Chinese-speaking communities
  • Apply a basic knowledge of grammar appropriate to the level
  • Begin to develop language learning strategies to understand gist and specific information
  • Write simple texts in simplified Chinese characters
  • Interact in simple way, and ask and answer questions on familiar topics