Chinese 1

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Course TypeCourse CodeNo. Of Credits
Foundation CoreSGA1GS1024

Semester and Year Offered: Semester 1 Monsoon 2018 onwards

Course Coordinator and Team: Severin Kuok

Email of course coordinator:

Pre-requisites: None

Course Objectives/Description:

course is mainly for non-speakers of Chinese who have no prior knowledge of the language. As an introductory course, it will introduce students with Modern Standard Chinese language (Putonghua/Mandarin). Initially, students will be familiarised with Chinese phonetic structure, learning of tones, accurate pronunciation. Students will begin learning with the aid of pinyin, will be introduced to Chinese writing system, radical strokes, Chinese characters and basic grammar. This course is a foundation course, aimed at building the foundation for the four main language skills- Listening, Speaking, Reading and Writing.

Course Outcomes:

  • The most general objectives of the course are to introduce China, its language and culture. Specific objectives are to help students develop an informed understanding of Chinese linguistic behaviour, society and culture. Concrete objectives include:
  • Understand the structure of Chinese phonetic system (pinyin and tones).
  • Communicate functionally using the most basic and frequently used expressions in standard Chinese
  • Introduce the system of character writing---hanzi, as a guide to literacy.
  • Expected learning outcomes:
  • Ability to use and understand the 5 basic tones of Chinese and PINYIN.
  • Grasp and use of basic vocabulary and grammatical structures.

Brief description of modules/ Main modules:

  1. Week 1: Introduction to phonetic chart and to the concept of ‘pinyin’ in Chinese.
  2. Week 2: Practice of phonetic chart. Introduction to initials and some finals.Rules on changes in tones in certain combinations.
  3. Week 3: Introduction to strokes and the rules governing them. Writing characters and spelling rules. Some more finals.Use of interrogative particle.
  4. Week 4: Introduction to Di-syllabic and tri-syllabic words. Some more finals
  5. Introduction to Chinese culture: Geography
  6. Week 5: Numbers and counting in Chinese
  7. Week 6: Introduction to measure words. Use of some measure words.
  8. Week 7:Greeting, simple self introduction
  9. Week 8:Vocabulary for family members. Comprehension of simple instructions.
  10. Introduction to Chinese culture: History
  11. Week 9:Use of conjunctions. Formation of interrogative, affirmative, negative sentences.
  12. Week 10:Name of a few countries in the world. Use of adjectives or attributive modifier.
  13. Week 11:Elements and constructions of Chinese characters and practice of writing 20-50 Chinese characters.
  14. Week 12: Situational dialogue practice in the classroom, family conversation.
  15. Introduction to Chinese culture: Festivals

Assessment Details with weights:

  1. Class performance 10%
  2. Presentation 30%
  3. Mid-semester 20%
  4. Final examination 40%

Reading List

  1. Elementary Chinese Reader (Revised Edition) Part 1 with Audio CDs , published by Sinolingua, Beijing, China
  2. Elementary Chinese Reader (Revised Edition) Part 2 with Audio CDs, published by Sinolingua, Beijing, China