SOAS University of London

China & Inner Asia Section, Department of East Asian Languages & Cultures

Chinese 2 (PG)

Module Code:
Year of study:
Taught in:
Full Year

The module provides students with a basic knowledge of Chinese and practice of using Chinese in a variety of everyday situations. It allows students to interact with Chinese speakers in Chinese.


Objectives and learning outcomes of the module

At the end of the module, a student should be able to demonstrate . . . 

  1. knowledge and understanding of all basic Chinese grammar (with 80 speech patterns)
  2. knowledge and understanding of essential Chinese vocabulary (some 700 most commonly used characters and 800 words)
  3. knowledge and understanding of the appropriateness of basic Chinese structures and expressions in a given context
  4. the ability to understand short passages in written Chinese on everyday topics
  5. the ability to produce short passages in written Chinese on everyday topics
  6. the ability to understand spoken Chinese and to engage in short spoken discourse on everyday topics
  7. the ability to deliver short prepared verbal presentation on topics of general interest
  8. knowledge and understanding of the role of language in general, and Chinese in particular, in language-based scholarship and research (specific learning outcome for PG students)


This course will be taught over 20 weeks with 4 hours classroom contact per week consisting of 2 hour lecture and 2 hour tutorial. 

Scope and syllabus

The module provides an introduction to Chinese language with emphasis on practical written and spoken Chinese. It covers phonetics and phonology (with special attention paid to tones), characters (including aspects of origin, structures, radicals, etc.). Communicative practice is established through learning language around dialogues dealing with a range of everyday situations, including travelling, making comparisons, etc.

Method of assessment

One three-hour written examination taken in May/June (40%); a language learning portfolio of 2500 characters consisting of a set of marked homework, short in-class tests, translation projects to be submitted throughout the year to the module convenor (30%); one 10 minute oral examination (10%); regular coursework (10%) a test at the end of term 1 (5%); a test at the end of term 2 (5%).

Suggested reading

The module will be based on

  • Colloquial Chinese by T’ung & Pollard, 1984, Routledge  (Lessons 10 – 16)
  • additional materials which will be made available throughout the course

Additional Chinese References

  • Yip, Po-ching and Don Rimmington (1998) Basic Chinese: a grammar and workbook, Routledge
  • Ross, Claudia and Jing-Heng Sheng Ma (2006) Modern Mandarin Chinese grammar: a practical guide, Routledge


Important notice regarding changes to programmes and modules