Education

Confucius Institute

Providing Chinese language teaching and cultural classes and events to the North East Scotland community

Education

At the Confucius Institute of the University of Aberdeen we offer a range of learning opportunities and different ways to develop an understanding of China. Our students range in age from 6 to 60 plus and all share an enjoyment of learning.

The Institute offers up to 60 timetabled language courses over a year as well as private classes, cross cultural courses and public workshops.

With expert teaching, small classes and the chance to quickly acquire basic Chinese language skills, check out our programme of classes, all of which are led by qualified staff who speak good English, who will help you enjoy learning.

Courses for Adults

Timetable | How to register | Conversation Corner | Private Tuition | Course Information


Adults Winter Term 2024 Dates and Course Details

The new term will start the week beginning 22nd January and run for 10 weeks.

Registration via the online store is now open.

All courses are not for credit and do not involve any form of assessment prior to the course starting, during or after.

If you are unsure which course level to join, do get in touch at confucius@abdn.ac.uk. If there is no course available at a suitable level for you, there is also the option of private tuition.

Course Timetable Winter Term 2024 Adults

22nd January to 30th March 2024 (10 weeks)

Level Day Time Full price/ Discounted price*
Beginners 1 (1 hr)  Wednesday 5pm-6pm £70/£35
Beginners 1 Tuesday 5pm-7pm £140/£70
Beginners 1 Wednesday 6pm-8pm £140/£70
Beginners 2  Tuesday 5pm-7pm £140/£70
Beginners 2  Wednesday 6pm-8pm £140/£70
Beginners Wednesday 6pm-8pm £140/£70
Post-Beginners 1 Tuesday 5pm-7pm £140/£70
Lower Intermediate 1 Tuesday 6pm-8pm £140/£70
Intermediate 2 Monday 7pm - 9pm £140/£70
Intermediate Wednesday 5pm-7pm £140/£70

*Discounted price for staff, students and alumni of the University of Aberdeen, and students of Robert Gordon University and NESCOL.

Course materials

The textbook Modern Mandarin Chinese 1 by Routledge will be used in levels from Beginners 1 up to Post-Beginners 3 and is available to purchase from us at a discounted rate here. We strongly recommend buying the book to maximise the benefit of the classes.


How to register

All adult classes can be booked through the University of Aberdeen online store. Payment can be made either by debit card, credit card or paypal.

University of Aberdeen staff and students need to enter their ID number in order to pay the reduced rate. Robert Gordon University and North East Scotland students can also book the reduced rate via the website and must bring their student ID to the first class.


Conversation Corner 

Our weekly Conversation Corner meets at the Confucius Institute on Thursdays 5pm - 6pm during term time, starting the week beginning 2nd October. It is free and open to all for friendly, informal Mandarin practice.

HSK

For anyone looking to gain a certificate in Chinese, we are a registered HSK exam centre. HSK exams are open to everyone and you do not have to be a current student to register. Please email confucius@abdn.ac.uk for details.


Private Tuition 

In addition to our timetabled courses, we can arrange private tuition and short intensive courses on demand either for individuals or small groups. The costs is £10 per hour and booking is in blocks of 10 hours, minimum booking is one 10-hour block. The teaching schedule is to be mutually agreed in advance, in general we offer teaching Monday - Friday, daytime and evenings. If you are interested in arranging private tuition, email confucius@abdn.ac.uk with your request details. 

University of Aberdeen Chinese Language Students

Special arrangements have been made for free supplementary classes for University of Aberdeen students who have already studied four semesters of Mandarin for credit, and would like to progress further. Please contact us at confucius@abdn.ac.uk to book directly.


Course Information

Beginners 1 (1 hr)

The Beginners 1 class is suitable for complete beginners who have never studied Mandarin. This shorter class is on a Wednesday evening.

Beginners 1

The Beginners 1 class is suitable for complete beginners who have never studied Mandarin. This term we will have Beginners 1 classes on Tuesday and Wednesday evenings, each for two hours per week.

Beginners 2

The Beginners 2 class is for those who have already completed Beginners 1 or studied Mandarin for at least 15 hours. This term we will have Beginners 2 classes on Tuesday and Wednesday evenings, each for two hours per week.

Beginners 3

The Beginners 3 class is for those who have already completed Beginners 2 or studied Mandarin for at least 30 hours. This term we will have Beginners 3 classes on a Wednesday evening for two hours per week.

Post-Beginners 1

The Post-Beginners 1 class is designed for those who have already completed Beginners 1-3 or studied Mandarin for 1 year part time, or hold an HSK 1 certificate. This term we will be offering a Post-Beginners 1 class on Tuesday evenings for two hours per week.

Post-Beginners 2

The Post-Beginners 2 class is for those who have already completed Post-Beginners 1. They might hold an HSK 1 certificate (not a requirement). This term we will not be offering a Post-Beginners 2 class.

Post-Beginners 3

The Post-Beginners 3 class is for those who have already completed Post-Beginners 2. They might hold an HSK 1 certificate (not a requirement). This term we will not be offering a Post-Beginners 3 class.

Lower Intermediate

The Lower Intermediate class is designed for those who have completed Post-Beginners 1-3 or studied Mandarin for around 2 years part time, or completed HSK level 2. This term we are offering Lower Intermediate  classes on Tuesday evenings for two hours per week. 

Intermediate 2

The Intermediate 2 class is designed for those who have completed the Intermediate 1 class or studied Mandarin for around 3 years part time, or completed HSK level 2. This term we are running Intermediate 2 classes on Monday evenings for two hours per week. 

Intermediate

This Intermediate level class is an adaptable course designed for students who fall between the defined levels of Intermediate 1, 2 and 3. Whether you are unsure about your current proficiency or seeking to reinforce your knowledge, this class caters to those who want to solidify their Mandarin skills. Suitable for learners who have completed any Intermediate level but aren’t quite ready for the Advanced class, or for students who have completed HSK level 2 or 3 or have studied for more than 3 years part time. These are not requirements to join, just a guideline. If you aren’t sure, please contact us to discuss. This term we are running the Intermediate class on Wednesday evenings for two hours per week.

Upper Intermediate

This class is for proficient speakers of Mandarin. Students should have completed classes up to Intermediate. They might hold an HSK 3 certificate (not a requirement). This term we will not be offering an Upper Intermediate class.

Advanced

This class is for proficient speakers of Mandarin. Students should have completed classes up to Upper Intermediate level or passed the HSK level 4 exam. The time of the Advanced class this term is to be confirmed. If you would be interested in taking an advanced level class, please email us at confucius@abdn.ac.uk.


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Chinese for Children

 Winter Term 2024 | Course Descriptions | Useful Links


Children 孩子 Háizi

Learning the Chinese language is not as difficult as you might think. Most children enjoy learning an exciting new language.


Winter Term 2024  

These courses are offered free of charge with a £5 administration fee per child per course. The new term starts the week beginning 22nd January and runs until 30th March (with a one week break for the school mid-term holiday the week beginning 12th February).  Book a place.

Level 

Day

Time

P2P4 Mandarin Club

Wednesday 4.15pm–5.00pm

P5–P7 Mandarin Club

Thursday 4.15pm–5.00pm

P7–S2 Mandarin Club

Wednesday 5.00pm–6.00pm

S3–S4 Study Club

Thursday 6.00pm–7.00pm

Mandarin Club Course Description

As well as learning basic Mandarin, pupils will have fun, informal lessons on a wide range of topics.  These include:

  • Chinese New Year
  • Martial Arts / Tai Chi
  • Traditional Chinese playground and board games
  • Chinese songs and traditional musical instruments
  • Folk dance
  • Calligraphy
  • Chinese arts and crafts (traditional paper cutting, paper folding and knot making)

S3–S4 Study Club Description

The S3–S4 Study Club is a flexible, student-led class, where students can share their personal goals and areas they would like to work on. Cultural experiences offered at the classes will also complement their language learning.

If you have any questions about these classes, please contact us at confucius@abdn.ac.uk


Useful links for children

Private Tuition

In addition to our regular scheduled courses, we can also offer private tuition and short intensive courses on demand, either for individuals or small groups.

The cost is £10 per hour and booking is in blocks of 10 hours, minimum booking is one 10-hour block. Blocks can be paid for via our online store.

The teaching schedule is to be mutually agreed in advance, in general we offer teaching Monday - Saturday, daytime and evenings.

If you are interested in arranging private tuition, email confucius@abdn.ac.uk with your request details. 

HSK

HSK test | YCT test


HSK Test

Get ready for the HSKHSK or Hanyu Shuiping Kaoshi is China's only standardised test of Chinese language proficiency. If you are interested in working or studying in China, or in applying for a Confucius Institute scholarship in the future, then HSK, the Chinese Proficiency Certificate, will be of interest to you.

In-person paper-based HSK tests will now be possible again. We are currently awaiting further information about the availability of online tests.

The HSKK or Hanyu Shuiping Kouyu Kaoshi is the HSK oral test, which can be taken together with or independently from the HSK exam. It is conducted by means of audio recording.

The Confucius Institute of the University of Aberdeen is an HSK exam centre and hosts HSK Chinese Proficiency tests throughout the year. For more information, contact us at confucius@abdn.ac.uk.

The test dates and deadline for registration are listed below.

Exam Dates in 2024

Date HSK/HSKK Registration Deadline
Mar 16 (Sat)  Written & Oral Test 15 Feb
Apr 20 (Sat) Written & Oral Test 20 Mar
May 18 (Sat) Written Test & Oral Test 18 Apr
Jun 22 (Sat) Written Test 21 May

 

 

 

*There will also be an opportunity to take a home-based online HSK test on 25th May, which is not hosted by the Confucius Institute but can be registered and paid for directly via the Chinese Proficiency Test website. Further information is offered here. Please read all the guidance, especially the technical requirements very carefully before registering.

Registration

To register, return a complete‌d HSK Registration Form, together with scanned images of the following:

  • Passport
  • Student card (if you are a student)
  • Passport-sized photograph

If you do not have access to a scanner, a clear photograph will be sufficient.

Submit all of the above by 4pm on the registration deadline to: confucius@abdn.ac.uk

Fees

£10 enrolment fees + exam fees (Level 1/£20; Level 2/£30; Level 3/£40; Level 4/£50; Level 5/£60; Level 6/£70). Additional exam fee for the oral test. We offer £5 discount to students, a copy of a valid student ID must be provided.

Fees can be paid via the online store. Enquiries to confucius@abdn.ac.uk.

Free Preparation 

For those who have registered for an HSK test, a free online exam practice session will be offered one week prior to the test date.

Results

Test takers will be able to view their test results at www.chinesetest.cn usually 1 month after sitting the test, however, sometimes it can take a bit longer, just check the website again, Confucius Institute staff do not have access to test results at any time.

HSK Levels

The HSK is an international standardized exam that tests and rates Chinese language proficiency. It assesses non-native Chinese speakers’ abilities in using the Chinese language in their daily, academic and professional lives. HSK consists of six levels, namely HSK 1-6.

Level 1

Students who are able to pass the HSK Level 1 can understand and use very simple Chinese words and phrases, meet basic needs for communication and possess the ability to further their Chinese language studies. There are 150 characters on the vocabulary list for HSK level 1.

Level 2

Students who are able to pass the HSK Level 2 have an excellent grasp of basic Chinese and can communicate in simple and routine tasks requiring a simple and direct exchange of information on familiar and routine matters.There are 300 characters on the vocabulary list for HSK level 2.

Level 3

Students who are able to pass the HSK Level 3 can communicate in Chinese at a basic level in their daily, academic and professional lives. They can manage most communication in Chinese when travelling in China. There are 600 characters on the vocabulary list for HSK level 3.

Level 4

Students who are able to pass the HSK Level 4 can converse in Chinese on a wide range of topics and are able to communicate fluently with native Chinese speakers. There are 1200 characters on the vocabulary list for HSK level 4.

Level 5

Students who are able to pass the HSK Level 5 can read Chinese newspapers and magazines, enjoy Chinese films and plays, and give a full-length speech in Chinese.There are 2400 characters on the vocabulary list for HSK level 5.

Level 6

Students who are able to pass the HSK Level 6 can easily comprehend written and spoken information in Chinese and can effectively express themselves in Chinese, both orally and on paper.

HSKK Levels

Basic Level

This correlates to HSK levels 1/2. The student should have a vocabulary of approximately 200 commonly used words.

Intermediate Level

This correlates to HSK levels 3/4. The student should have amassed a vocabulary of approximately 900 words.

Advanced Level

This correlates to HSK levels 5/6. The student should have mastered approximately 3000 words.


Youth Chinese Test (YCT) 中小学生汉语考试

The Youth Chinese Test (YCT) is an international standardised Chinese language test, which is directed at examining non-native primary and secondary school students' ability to apply Chinese language in their studies and daily lives.

The Confucius Institute of the University of Aberdeen is a YCT test centre and is able to host the YCT Chinese Proficiency tests throughout the year. The test dates and deadlines for registration are listed below.

For more information, contact us at confucius@abdn.ac.uk.

2024 Test Dates

Date YCT Registration Deadline
Mar 16 (Sat) Written Test 15 Feb

Registration

To register, return a completed application form together with:

  • Scan of your passport

All of the above to be submitted by 4pm on the registration deadline to: confucius@abdn.ac.uk. We will then send you a link to payment via our online store.

Fees

£10 enrolment fees + exam fees (£5 for Level 1, £10 for Level 2, £20 for Level 3). Additional exam fee for the oral test.

Examination fee for the oral test: £10

Enquiries to: confucius@abdn.ac.uk.

Results

Test takers will be able to view their test results at www.chinesetest.cn usually 1 month after sitting the test, however, sometimes it can take a bit longer, just check the website again, Confucius Institute staff do not have access to test results at any time.


Levels

The YCT is divided into four levels, YCT Level 1, YCT Level 2, YCT Level 3 and YCT Level 4 which is the most difficult. The speaking test is divided into the YCT (Beginner Level) and YCT (Intermediate Level). Each level is tested with an independent test paper.

Test takers may choose test of any level according to their Chinese proficiency.

Level 1

Children who pass YCT-Level 1 can understand and use some most frequently used Chinese words and sentences, and prepare themselves for continuing their Chinese studies.

Level 2

Children who pass YCT-Level 2 can understand and use some simple Chinese words and sentences to communicate.

Level 3

Children who pass YCT-Level 3 can use Chinese in a simple and direct way, applying it in a basic topic in their daily lives.

Level 4

Children who pass YCT-Level 4 can use Chinese to serve their demands in their personal lives and studies, and are able to complete most of the communicative tasks they experience during a visit to China.

China Summer Programme

Wuhan International Summer Programme

25th June-12th July 2023

Applications are now open for summer 2023.

This packed cultural programme designed to enrich your knowledge of China includes a series of lectures, activities and excursions. Full details of the programme can be found here

Application Process

Applications are open to all students currently enrolled at the University of Aberdeen.

The Confucius Institute will be required to supply a letter of recommendation along with the completed application form.

The deadline for applying for recommendation is 27th March.

Applicants must:

  • Must be at least 18 but no more than 30 years of age as of  25 June 2023
  • Provide proof of English proficiency if your first language is not English (IELTS: 6.5 or above; or TOFEL: 85 or above; or a letter of reference from your home institution to prove that your English proficiency is of a sufficient level).

Fees

Wuhan University offers scholarships for 2023 Luojia International Summer Program, and the scholarship covers the following:

  • Registration fee
  • Tuition fee
  • Housing (on-campus accommodation for the stay in Wuhan, mostly double rooms)
  • Field trips and cultural activities in Wuhan
  • Basic accident insurance for the stay in Wuhan.

Participant students are required to cover:

  • Airfare cost
  • Visa application fee
  • Cost of PCR test
  • Meals (estimated £9 per day for meals offered in student canteen)
  • Optional trip (estimated £500)
  • Adequate personal medical insurance for stay in China

Contact details

For recommendation letter:

 


PhD Opportunities

There are currently no opportunities available.

Scholarships to China

Scholarship Types  | Application Process | Chinese bridge awards recipient policies |
Other information | Contacts 


Confucius Institute Scholarships

The International Chinese Language Teachers (Confucius Institute) Scholarship programme, formerly known as Confucius Institute Scholarship, provides financial aid for students, scholars and Chinese language teachers to study at a Chinese university for a certain period of time.

Scholarship Types

Applicants can visit the International Chinese Language Teachers Scholarship application website: cis.chinese.cn from 1 Mar 2023 to apply for the scholarships. The following types of scholarships are on offer:

  • PhD in Teaching Chinese to Speakers of Other Languages
  • Master’s Degree in Teaching Chinese to Speakers of Other Languages (MTCSOL)
  • Bachelor’s Degree in Teaching Chinese to Speakers of Other Languages (BTCSOL)
  • One Academic Year Scholarship
  • One Semester Scholarship
  • Four-Week Scholarship
  • Joint Training Programme Scholarship
  • One Academic Year Scholarship (Online Programme)
  • One Semester Scholarship (Online Programme)

Recipients of full scholarships are exempt from tuition fees and accommodation fees, and are provided with a monthly living allowance (except those on Four-Week Scholarships) as well as comprehensive medical insurance for foreign students studying in China.

Scholarship for PhD in Teaching Chinese to Speakers of Other Languages (DTCSOL) 

This programme provides a scholarship for a maximum of four academic years.  Applicants should hold a Master’s degree in Teaching Chinese as a Foreign Language, Linguistics, Teaching Chinese to Speakers of Other Languages or education-related majors. Applicants should have a minimum score of 200 on the HSK 6 test, 60 on the HSKK test (Advanced Level) and more than 2 years’ work experience in Chinese language teaching and related fields. Priority will be given to applicants who are able to provide a work contract with a teaching institution upon completing their studies in China or proof of similar. 

Scholarship for Master’s Degree in Teaching Chinese to Speakers of Other Languages (MTCSOL)

This programme provides a scholarship for a maximum of two academic years. Applicants should hold a Bachelor’s degree, and have a minimum score of 210 on the HSK 5 test, as well as 60 on the HSKK test (Intermediate Level). Priority will be given to applicants who are able to provide a work contract with a teaching institution upon completing their studies in China or proof of similar.  

Scholarship for Bachelor’s Degree in Teaching Chinese to Speakers of Other Languages (BTCSOL)

This programme provides a scholarship for a maximum of four academic years. Applicants should hold a senior high school diploma and a minimum score of 210 on the HSK 4 test, as well as 60 on the HSKK test (Intermediate Level). 

One Academic Year Scholarship

This programme provides a scholarship for a maximum of eleven months. International students currently studying in China are not eligible. Three types of scholarship are avaliable:

i. TCSOL 

Applicants should have a minimum score of 270 on the HSK 3 test, and an HSKK test score is required.

ii. Chinese Language and Literature, Chinese History, Chinese Philosophy, etc.

Applicants should have a minimum score of 180 on the HSK 4 test, and 60 on the HSKK test (Intermediate Level).

iii. Chinese Language Study 

Applicants should have a minimum score of 210 on the HSK 3 test. Priority will be given to applicants who provide an HSKK test score. 

One Semester Scholarship 

This programme commences either in September or March and provides a scholarship of a maximum of five months. Applicants holding the X1 or X2 visa are not eligible. Two types of One Semester Scholarship are available:

i. TCSOL, Chinese Language and Literature, Chinese History, Chinese Philosophy, etc.

Applicants should have a minimum score of 180 on the HSK 3 test, and an HSKK test score is required.

ii. Traditional Chinese Medicine and Taiji Culture

An HSK test score is required. Priority will be given to applicants who provide an HSKK test score. 

Four-Week Scholarship 

This programme commences either in July or December and provides a four-week scholarship. Applicants holding the X1 or X2 visa are not eligible. 

Appliccants can choose from the following programmes: Chinese Study, Traditional Chinese Medicine, Taiji Culture, Chinese Language plus Home-Stay Experience in a Chinese Family, Special Four-week Programme for Confucius Institutes.

An HSK test score is required. The programme may be organized and applied for by a recommending institution with 10-15 participants per group. Prior to the trip, a detailed study plan shall be made in consultation with host institutions and such plan shall be submitted to CLEC for approval.

Joint Training Programme Scholarship

Further information of this type of scholarship will be announced on the International Chinese Language Teachers Scholarship website in due course.

Online Scholarship Programmes

There are three types of Online Scholarship Programmes available:

One Academic Year Chinese Language Study

This course of study can be started in September or March. In general, applicants should achieve a score of at least 180 on HSK Level 3 and any applicant with an HSKK result will be given priority.

One Semester Chinese Language Study

This course of study can be started in September or March. Applicants should have an HSK result.

Special online programme

Please contact host universities offering this programme directly for details.


Application Process

Eligible applicants should be:

a) non-Chinese citizens;

b) in good health, and with good academic performance;

c) committed to Chinese language education and related work;

d) between the ages of 16 and 35 (as of September). Applicants currently working as Chinese language teachers should not be over 45, while undergraduate student applicants should not be over 25. 

To apply, visit the International Chinese Language Teachers Scholarship website http://cis.chinese.cn where you can set up an account, and find out more about the range of participating host higher education institutions, as well as details of which scholarships are offered. The system opens from 1 March 2023.

Applicants should complete and submit the online International Chinese Language Teachers Scholarship Application Form with relevant supporting documents. Applicants are required to follow up with the application procedures, review comments, and check scholarship award results.

Scholarship recipients should confirm the scholarship offer with the host institutions and undertake the registration procedures required by the host institutions. Scholarship winners should also print out the scholarship award certificate, apply for relevant Chinese visa in time and register with the host institutions within the required period to ensure they receive the entitlements of the awarded scholarship.

Deadlines for Application

  • For September 2023 entry, applications should be submitted by 15 May 2023 (Please check the application deadlines set by host universities you’d like to apply to as the deadlines may vary. Early application is recommended.) 
  • For March 2024 entry, applications should be submitted by 15 November 2023
  • For a 4-week scholarship:  for July entry applications should be submitted by 15 April 2023; for December entry applications should be submitted by 15 September 2023

Documents Required

For all applicants: 

a) a scanned copy of passport photo page;

b) a scanned copy of score reports of the HSK and HSKK tests (results are valid for 2 years);

c) a reference letter by the head of the recommending institution.

For degree scholarship programme applicants:

a) a certification of the highest education diploma (or proof of expected graduation) and an official transcript;

b) applicants of the Scholarship for DTCSOL students are required to provide 2 reference letters from professors or associate professors or experts with equivalent professional and technical titles in relevant fields and a 3000-character personal statement in Chinese (including knowledge of the intended field of study and research proposal). Priority will be given to applicants who may provide a work contract with a teaching institution upon completing their studies in China or a proof to the same effect.

c) applicants of the Scholarship for MTCSOL students are required to provide 2 reference letters from professors or associate professors. Priority will be given to applicants who may provide a work contract with a teaching institution upon completing their studies in China or a proof to the same effect.

Applicants currently working as Chinese language teachers should provide proof of employment as well as a reference letter from the employer.

Applicants under the age of 18 should provide certified documents signed by their entrusted legal guardians in China.

Applicants should also provide additional documents required by the host institutions.


Chinese Bridge Awards Recipient Policies 

Chinese Bridge winners who have been awarded the International Chinese Language Teachers Scholarship Certificate should log onto the International Chinese Language Teachers Scholarship website and submit documents to relevant host institutions upon presentation of their scholarship certificates. For inquiry, please contact chinesebridge@chinese.cn. 

Recommending institutions and host institutions

Recommending institutions and host institutions shall, pursuant to the guide, provide consulting, recommendation and enrolment services.


Other Information 

a) Please contact host institutions for curriculum and course listings.

b) Applicants should be familiar with the specific criteria and deadlines for registration, and submit necessary documents according to specific requirements. 

c) Degree students are subject to the annual assessment according to the Annual Appraisal Procedures of International Chinese Language Teachers Scholarship. 

d) Those who fail to register on time, fail to pass the health assessment, drop out midway and/or are suspended from school will be deprived of their scholarship.


Centre for Language Education and Cooperation Contact

Division of Test and Scholarships
Email: scholarships@chinese.cn 

Tel: +86-10-58595727

 

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