Why study Mandarin?

Nearly 1.4 billion people speak Mandarin worldwide, which not only includes people in China but also in Southeast Asian countries such as Singapore, Malaysia, Indonesia, as well as in the overseas Chinese communities all over the world. By learning Mandarin, you will be unlocking a potential pool of connections that would be otherwise inaccessible. Learning Mandarin will therefore ensure you are one step ahead.

Learning Mandarin as part of the Dual Degree Program

DDP welcomes applicants with various language backgrounds and learning experiences. Prior knowledge of Chinese is NOT a prerequisite for application. SFU offers a full range of Chinese language courses to help you grasp the language in a short period of time. This will ensure you are prepared before you go to China.

Upon your admission to the DDP, a personal language learning plan will be made for you according to your language background and current level of proficiency in Chinese.

True beginners

If this will be your very first time studying Mandarin, or you have only studied elementary level Chinese, you will be recommended to enroll in the following intensive classes in your first two terms at SFU.

Fall Semester

CHIN 180-3 Intensive Mandarin Chinese for Beginners I
CHIN 181-3 Intensive Mandarin Chinese for Beginners II

Spring Semester

CHIN 280-3 Intensive Mandarin Chinese for Beginners III
CHIN 281-3 Intensive Mandarin Chinese for Beginners IV
Listening & Speaking Lab

Advanced beginners

If you already have a sound understanding of Mandarin, you will be recommended to take classes designed for Heritage Chinese learners, which will further develop your communicative competence, with special focus on reading and writing. You will only need to take one or two of the following courses, according to your current language level:

CHIN 190-3 Heritage Mandarin Chinese I
CHIN 191-3 Heritage Mandarin Chinese II
CHIN 290-3 Heritage Mandarin Chinese III
CHIN 291-3 Heritage Mandarin Chinese IV
CHIN 390-3 Advanced Chinese Reading

Chinese as your native language

If you grew up and completed your secondary education in a Chinese-speaking country or region, you are exempted from the DDP Chinese courses. Please contact us at cschina@sfu.ca to learn about the application procedure for exemption.

Summer Immersion Program

In the first Summer in China, before regular academic studies begin in September, the true beginner students and some of the advanced beginner students are required to enrol in the Summer Immersion Program, which includes field trips to local attractions led by the course instructor. This will enable students to become confident in living in a Mandarin-speaking environment. The cost of the Summer Immersion Program is covered by the Dual Degree Program.

The Chinese Proficiency Test

To meet the graduation requirements of Zhejiang University (ZJU), all DDP students must receive the HSK-4 certificate in Chinese proficiency by the time they finish their studies at ZJU (at the end of year 3).

An HSK-4 certificate indicates students can discuss a wide range of topics in Chinese and are capable of communicating fluently with native Chinese speakers.