Mandarin Chinese (intermediate I)

Distance learning group
  • Fit a language around your Undergraduate or Postgraduate studies
  • For students on certain courses, a UWLP module will be included in your programme at no extra cost
  • Language provides you with many transferable skills, which are highly valued in the contemporary world
  • Most of our programmes are delivered by native speakers of the language
  • All of our modules are taught in small class sizes
  • All students will have full access to the University's excellent resources.

Module code: LX2400

Number of Aston credits: 

Entry requirements: Chinese beginners II or GCSE D or above
Language of Delivery: Chinese 

Apply: Online  

Fees: To check the latest fees for this course, please visit THIS PAGE. Pay online.

Duration: 2 hours per week for 12 weeks per module
Teaching Period when Offered: Teaching Period 1

Module convenor: Mrs Qiaochao Zhang 

Further information: View contacts for all your University Wide Language Programme enquiries.

This module is designed to develop the knowledge of the Chinese language built on the previous modules: Chinese for Beginners I and II.

The module content follows the Languages Ladder framework, provides student with the basic structures needed at this level, and ensures progression in language ability and proficiency.

Language purposes and functions:

  • Taking part in social situations (e.g. greeting/responding to greetings; expressing thanks; apologising)
  • Repairing communication (e.g. asking for repetition, checking meaning)
  • Giving information
  • Asking/answering questions
  • Describing
  • Asking for and giving opinions
  • Following/giving instructions
  • Asking for things
  • Expressing ability
  • Using numbers and expressing quantity
  • Expressing time
  • Agreeing/disagreeing
  • Comparing
  • Giving reasons
  • Expressing preferences
  • Making and responding to suggestions
  • Expressing obligation and lack of obligation
  • Expressing feelings and emotions
  • Talking about the present
  • Talking about the future
  • Talking about the past

Educational Aims

It is an intermediate-level module developed with the purpose of teaching students to express, interpret, and negotiate meaning in context. The module emphasises the functional use of language within a proficiency-oriented framework. The development of the basic skills – listening, speaking, reading, writing, and cultural awareness-are given equal weight and are taught as building blocks toward proficiency and communication. At the end of this course students will be entitled to take Intermediate Chinese II.

This module aims to consolidate and expand the fundamentals of Chinese language acquire at the level of Chinese for Beginners I and II This course offers a practical knowledge of the Chinese culture and the Chinese language as spoken by native speakers. This practical knowledge will be developed in five areas: listening, speaking, reading, writing, and cultural competence. Furthermore, this course will consolidate the fundamentals of Chinese grammar at intermediate level. The course is organized around interactive and communicative activities that will allow students to build all skills in the most effective way. On completion of this module students will have acquired the following skills:

Knowledge and understanding:

  • The primary goal is to offer students an opportunity to review existing and acquire new communicative skills in Chinese at an intermediate level.
  • Continue to increase vocabulary foundation in order to increase language skills
  • Continue use of acquired grammatical structures

Cognitive skills: students will be able to

  • Ability to demonstrate comprehension of Chinese spoken at normal speed on a variety of selected topics in various formats.

  • Ability to demonstrate the use of conversational skills in a variety of communicative situations.

  • Ability to demonstrate accurate reading comprehension of cultural issues.

  • Ability to produce written Chinese to meet practical needs as well as creative expression.

Subject-specific skills: students will be able to

  • Develop working knowledge of grammar structures in context.

  • Listen to passages, or conversations, and answer questions about the content.

  • Read authentic texts and answer questions about the content.

  • Write compositions using acquired vocabulary and grammatical structures.

  • Engage in and sustain face to face conversation with others about a variety of topics

Transferable skills: students will have practised

  • Using different learning resources available in print or on-line
  • Working autonomously inside and outside the classroom, to further their knowledge of Chinese through independent learning skills;
  • Working in pairs and groups to practise and consolidate written and spoken communicative competence.
  • Continuing to use the Internet to acquire information about the Chinese speaking world.

The course will be delivered in Chinese and English will be used When necessary or requested by students in particular situations or grammar explanations. Students are expected to use the target language as a means of communication in the classroom. Each lesson will aim to develop the skills of reading, writing, listening and speaking, and to deepen knowledge and understanding of the grammar and lexis of the Chinese language.  Cultural aspects of the language that can help or hinder interaction with native speakers of Chinese will be explored.

In this module students will engage in a variety of activities and assignments such as:

  • Communication and practice using vocabulary and grammar learned in oral and written modes

  • Reading activities and exercises

  • Writing activities ranging from short paragraphs to compositions

  • Integration of skills in tasks and activities, both in small groups and as a class

Students will be encouraged to seek opportunities to practise the four skills outside the classroom. They will be expected to take advantage of the learning resources available in the LES to practise, revise and consolidate their learning of the Chinese language.

The module will consist of two contact hours per week.

A minimum of 2-3 hours a week, in addition to the 2 taught hours, should be devoted to Chinese outside the classroom to complete work set by the tutor, assignments on grammar structures, learn and revise vocabulary and practise reading, writing, and listening skills.

Learning Hours

Seminar - A discussion or classroom session focusing on a particular topic or project - (20%)

Independent Study - might include preparation for scheduled sessions, follow-up work, wider reading or practice, completion of assessment tasks, revision, etc - (80%)

Feedback will be given through:

  • Formative feedback throughout the module through informal, verbal  comments on weekly activities.
  • Formative and summative feedback following the oral presentation.

  • Summative written feedback as part of the marking process for the exam.

Summative assessment

  • A 5-min (approx.) individual discussion with the tutor on topics covered in class (no notes allowed) in week 10  20%
  • A 30-min listening test in week 11  20%
  • A 2-hour exam (grammar and vocabulary exercises, reading comprehension, and a written composition) (examination period), No dictionary allowed. 60%
  • Students are advised that all marks obtained in tests are subject to moderation and approval by the external examiner.

Liu, X. et al. (2002) New Practical Chinese Reader, vol 1, Beijing Language & Culture University Press.

Grammar book:
Yip, P. C. & Don, R. (1998) Intermediate Chinese: A Grammar and Workbook Routledge

Oxford Chinese Dictionary and Talking Chinese Dictionary and Instant Translator (or equivalent bilingual dictionary).

A list of useful electronic resources is available on Blackboard.

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