Hacking Chinese

A better way of learning Mandarin

Articles in the ‘Advanced’ category

  1. Can you learn Chinese faster by making it harder?

    When learning Chinese, should you focus on extensive learning, where you cover a lot of fairly easy material, or should you throw yourself in at the deep end and make things as difficult as you can and hope you adapt? Can you learn faster by making it more difficult? I have advocated both approaches, which […]

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  2. Should you focus on learning Chinese words or phrases?

    When learning Chinese, should you focus mainly on learning words or phrases? This question is not easy to answer and depends on a number of factors. This article breaks it down and discusses the pros and cons of each.

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  3. Vocabulary lists that help you learn Chinese and how to use them

    This article looks at various types of vocabulary lists and discusses how they should (or shouldn’t) be used for learning Chinese. Different lists have different uses, so make sure you have the right one and that you use it properly!

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  4. Should you learn Chinese vocabulary from lists?

    Many students rely heavily on lists to learn new characters and words in Chinese. This can be good, but there are also a number of problems you should be aware of. This article looks at some pros and cons with using vocabulary lists to learn Chinese.

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  5. Chinese reading speed revisited

    It’s not easy to Improve reading speed in Chinese, but it is necessary for many proficiency exams. This article takes a new look at the problem facing students, and goes back to the basics, suggesting that most advice for reading faster is mostly useless for Chinese learners.

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  6. Get to know your own Chinese voice

    Recording yourself provides a convenient, enlightening and cheap way to improve your spoken Chinese, and what better to record than a diary? This article explores why you should record more and offers some suggestions for what to record.

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  7. Advanced listening and reading with Skeptoid Chinese

    Skeptoid is a podcast about popular myths, using science and research to examine them critically. The Chinese version is excellent practice for advanced learners, with both text and audio!

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  8. Task based Chinese learning and teaching

    Task based language learning and teaching is built around working with tasks in the target language with a clear focus on meaning (communication). Focus on form should come after the task has been completed.

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  9. Let’s play 迷霧中 (Into the Haze)

    Let’s play 迷霧中 (Into the Haze)! In this post, I share a video where I play a small part of the game, summarising and commenting on what’s going on in English (the game is of course in Mandarin).

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  10. How long do you have to study Chinese to make it useful?

    Learning Chinese and other languages is always useful. The real question should be what it’s useful for and what you need to get there. Still, you will never wake up one day and just know that you’re done, there’s always more!

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