Hacking Chinese

A better way of learning Mandarin

Hacking Chinese Podcast

Hacking Chinese PodcastThe Hacking Chinese podcast is about how to learn Mandarin, with in-depth discussions about how to approach challenges, solve problems and get the most out of your learning. Many episodes are recorded articles, but there will also be interviews and other types of content.

Currently available on: Apple Podcasts, Breaker, Google Podcast, Overcast, Pocket Casts, RadioPublic,  Spotify and YouTube. If you like Hacking Chinese, please consider rating and sharing the podcast on your favourite platform!

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Here’s a list of all episodes. You can also browse them on your favourite platform (see links above).

Year 4: August 2023 to present

  1. Why you should preview before every Chinese lesson
  2. How I used a notebook to learn more Chinese, and why you should too
  3. Student Q&A, July 2024: Reading speed, children’s books and Chinese literature
  4. The three factors that determine how much Chinese you learn
  5. Habit hacking for language learners
  6. Should you learn the pronunciation of radicals?
  7. Student Q&A, June 2024: How much time on flashcards, Remembering the Hanzi, and resources for learning characters
  8. Chinese character learning for all students
  9. Learning to hear the sounds and tones in Mandarin
  10. 24 free resources for improving your Mandarin pronunciation
  11. Student Q&A, May 2024: Understanding strangers, listening with transcripts, and which podcasts to avoid
  12. Beyond tīng bu dǒng, part 6: Why is listening in Chinese so hard?
  13. Chengyu, a magic key to Chinese language and culture, or a waste of time?
  14. Interview: Insights from Skritter’s Complete Guide to Learning Chinese
  15. Student Q&A, April 2024: Learning chengyu, listening to yourself and using role-playing games to learn Chinese
  16. Is speaking more important than listening when learning Chinese?
  17. The best podcasts for learning Chinese in 2024
  18. Real communication: What it is, why you want it and how to get it
  19. How to learn Chinese in the long term with intrinsic motivation
  20. Student Q&A, March 2024: Reading aloud, finding word boundaries, and working actively with reading materials
  21. Outlier Chinese Character Masterclass review: Understand more, learn faster, remember longer
  22. The Hacking Chinese guide to Mandarin tones, part 3: Learning to hear and say tones
  23. The Hacking Chinese guide to Mandarin tones, part 2: How important are tones?
  24. The Hacking Chinese guide to Mandarin tones, part 1: What are tones?
  25. Student Q&A, February 2024: Typing or handwriting, using new words in texts, and how to use AI to improve your writing
  26. Listen more and learn more by building a personal Chinese audio library
  27. 8 great ways to scaffold your Chinese listening and reading
  28. Best of Hacking Chinese 2023
  29. Student Q&A, January 2024: Chinese music, too much Mandarin in the classroom, and listening in noisy environments
  30. 12 ways chatting online will improve your Chinese
  31. How to best use flashcards to learn Chinese
  32. Why flashcards are terrible for learning Chinese
  33. Student Q&A, December 2023: How many words to learn, if it’s good to learn radicals, and whether to learn simplified or traditional characters
  34. Why flashcards are great for learning Chinese
  35. Chinese reading speed revisited
  36. Is learning things by heart good for improving your Chinese?
  37. The 10 best free Chinese reading resources for beginner, intermediate and advanced learners
  38. Student Q&A, November 2023: Reading Pinyin or characters, comprehensible vs. compelling content and reading tools
  39. Shapeshifting Chinese characters
  40. You won’t learn Chinese simply by living abroad
  41. 100 hours of Chinese listening in 3 weeks: What I learnt and how to apply it
  42. Student Q&A, October 2023: Expanding vocabulary quickly, learning by watching videos and nailing dictation tests
  43. Listen more than once: How the replay button can help you learn more Chinese
  44. The cheapest and most convenient way to improve your spoken Chinese
  45. Improving your Chinese pronunciation by mimicking native speakers
  46. Student Q&A: Listening more than once, assessing pronunciation and the merits of flashcards
  47. How long do you have to study Chinese to make it useful?
  48. Getting the most out of your learning with Hacking Chinese
  49. Should you throw away your Chinese textbook?
  50. How translation to another language can help you learn Chinese

Year 3: August 2022 to August 2023

  1. Hacking Chinese Podcast three-year anniversary Q&A
  2. Is Chinese difficult to learn?
  3. Timeboxing Chinese: Get more done in less time
  4. Insights from the new HSK 7-9: Interview with Sara Jaaksola
  5. How I learnt Chinese, part 7: Teaching, writing, learning
  6. How narrow reading and listening can help you bridge the gap to real Chinese
  7. Seeing through the illusion of advanced Chinese learning
  8. Why travelling isn’t the best method to learn Chinese
  9. How I learnt Chinese, part 6: Graduate program in Taiwan
  10. Learning Chinese with the aid of technology: Interview with Jake Gilll from Skritter
  11. Get to know your Chinese voice to level up your speaking ability
  12. How learning some basic theory can improve your Mandarin pronunciation
  13. Learning Chinese is more like walking a thousand miles than running 100-metre dash
  14. How I learnt Chinese, part 5: Returning to Sweden
  15. Beyond tīng bu dǒng, part 5: Becoming a better listener as a student of Chinese
  16. Vocabulary lists that help you learn Chinese and how to use them
  17. Should you learn Chinese vocabulary from lists?
  18. How I learnt Chinese, part 4: My second year in Taiwan
  19. 6 benefits of learning Chinese through sports
  20. Should you use an efficient method for learning Chinese even if you hate it?
  21. Don’t try to improve everything at once when learning Chinese
  22. How I learnt Chinese, part 3: My first year in Taiwan
  23. Learn Chinese by playing Mahjong (麻将, májiàng)
  24. Hacking Chinese Pronunciation: Learning Mandarin finals
  25. Can ChatGPT pass the hSK?
  26. How I learnt Chinese, part 2: Learning Mandarin in Sweden
  27. Beginner Chinese listening practice: What to listen to and how
  28. Using the HSK as a roadmap to learning Chinese
  29. How I learnt Chinese, part 1: Where it all started
  30. Best of Hacking Chinese 2022
  31. 8 tips for learning Chinese as an introverted student
  32. Hacking Chinese reader and listener survey
  33. Learn Chinese efficiently, not quickly
  34. Beyond tīng bu dǒng, part 4: Learning to process spoken Mandarin quickly and effortlessly
  35. Learning Chinese words, characters and components
  36. Beyond tīng bu dǒng, part 3: Using what you already know to aid listening comprehension in Chinese
  37. The simple trick I used to double the amount of Chinese I listen to
  38. Standard pronunciation in Chinese and why you want it
  39. Tone errors in Mandarin that actually can cause misunderstandings
  40. How to study Chinese when you don’t feel like it
  41. Are there any shortcuts for learning Chinese?
  42. The 10 best free Chinese listening resources for beginner, intermediate and advanced learners
  43. Learning the neutral tone in Mandarin
  44. Training your Chinese teacher, part 1: Introduction
  45. Beyond tīng bu dǒng, part 2: From sound to meaning in Mandarin
  46. Beyond tīng bu dǒng, part 1: A guide to Chinese listening comprehension
  47. Kickstart your learning with the Skritter Character Course
  48. Focusing on Mandarin tones without being distracted by Pinyin
  49. Take responsibility for your Chinese learning now
  50. 50 beginner questions about learning Chinese
  51. Learning to pronounce Mandarin with Pinyin, Zhuyin and IPA
  52. 10 ways of using games to learn and teach Chinese

Year 2: August 2021 to August 2022

  1. Hacking Chinese Podcast two-year anniversary Q&A
  2. How to learn Chinese characters as a beginner
  3. 7 ways to write Mandarin tones
  4. Chinese language question triage: When to ask whom about what
  5. The most common Chinese words, characters and components for language learners and teachers
  6. How to become fluent in Chinese
  7. How to learn from your mistakes and errors when learning Chinese
  8. Do you have to learn to write Chinese characters by hand?
  9. Which words you should learn and where to find them
  10. Why you should use more than one Chinese textbook
  11. Analyse and balance your Chinese learning with Paul Nation’s four strands
  12. On accuracy, communication and comprehensibility when learning Chinese
  13. Obligatory and optional tone change rules in Mandarin
  14. How to find more time to practise Chinese listening
  15. Are authentic texts good for learning Chinese or is graded content better?
  16. What to read to improve your Chinese and why
  17. How to learn Chinese pronunciation as a beginner
  18. Focusing on tone pairs to improve your Mandarin pronunciation
  19. Time quality: Studying the right thing at the right time
  20. 500 resources for learning and teaching Chinese, tagged by level, topic and type
  21. How to start learning Chinese again after a break
  22. Is it necessary to learn the stroke order of Chinese characters?
  23. How to survive and thrive in a difficult Chinese course
  24. The benefits of using 语文/國文 textbooks to learn Chinese
  25. Is taking a Chinese course that’s too hard good for your learning?
  26. How to improve your Chinese handwriting
  27. A: Text adventure games and how to use them in the Chinese language classroom
    B: 文字冒险游戏及其在对外汉语教学中的应用
  28. Best of Hacking Chinese 2021
  29. A guide to Pinyin traps and pitfalls: Learning Mandarin pronunciation
  30. Two reasons why pronunciation matters more than you think
  31. How to improve fluency in Chinese by playing word games
  32. My best advice on how to learn Chinese characters
  33. The building blocks of Chinese, part 6: Learning and remembering compound words
  34. The building blocks of Chinese, part 5: Making sense of Chinese words
  35. Why spaced repetition software is uniquely well suited to learning Chinese characters
  36. Should you learn the names of the strokes in Chinese characters?
  37. The 7 best Chinese reading resources for beginners
  38. Should you enrol in a Chinese course or are you better off learning on your own?
  39. 6 challenges students face when learning to read Chinese and how to overcome them
  40. Learning to read handwritten Chinese
  41. Why your Chinese isn’t as good as you think it ought to be
  42. The building blocks of Chinese, part 4: Learning and remembering compound characters
  43. The building blocks of Chinese, part 3: Compound characters
  44. The beginner’s guide to Chinese translation
  45. Using voice messaging as a stepping stone to Chinese conversations
  46. Using speech recognition to improve Chinese pronunciation, part 1
  47. A smart method to discover problems with Mandarin sounds and tones
  48. 7 ideas for smooth and effortless Chinese listening practice
  49. Back-to-school Hacking Chinese course discount 2021
  50. The building blocks of Chinese, part 2: Basic characters, components and radicals
  51. The building blocks of Chinese, part 1: Chinese characters and words in a nutshell
  52. Skritter review: Boosting your Chinese character learning (2021 edition)

Year 1: August 2020 to August 2021

  1. Hacking Chinese Podcast one-year anniversary Q&A
  2. Chinese language logging, part 3: Tools and resources for keeping track of your learning
  3. Chinese language learning in the twenty-first century: Towards a digital ecosystem?
  4. The benefits of using Wikipedia to look up words when learning Chinese
  5. How to get past the intermediate Chinese learning plateau
  6. The new HSK 3.0 (2021): What you need to know
  7. Learning to understand regionally accented Mandarin
  8. The importance of tones is inversely proportional to the predictability of what you say
  9. Lost in transcription: Saylaw, Ice Island and Aristotle
  10. How important is reading speed on tests like HSK and TOCFL?
  11. Chinese language logging, part 2: A healthy, balanced diet of Mandarin
  12. Chinese language logging, part 1: Why and how to track your progress
  13. Hacking Chinese Pronunciation: Speaking with Confidence is now open!
  14. How to look up Chinese characters you don’t know
  15. What’s the difference between Chinese pronunciation and Pinyin? Does it matter?
  16. Learning the second tone in Mandarin Chinese
  17. Chinese input methods: A guide for second language learners
  18. Why is listening in Chinese so hard?
  19. Does using colour to represent Mandarin tones make them easier to learn?
  20. The 10 best free Chinese reading resources for beginner, intermediate and advanced learners
  21. 6 things in Chinese that are harder to learn than they seem
  22. Hacking Chinese Challenges – Building language skills through daily practice and friendly competition
  23. Learning science in Chinese with 李永乐老师
  24. 5 levels of understanding Chinese characters: Superficial forms to deep structure
  25. 20 tips and tricks to improve your Chinese writing ability
  26. 7 things you were taught in Chinese class that are actually wrong
  27. Learning the third tone in Mandarin Chinese
  28. Welcome to the Hacking Chinese Pronunciation Course
  29. The most serious mistake students make when learning Mandarin pronunciation
  30. Best of Hacking Chinese 2020
  31. Can too much guidance make you learn less Chinese?
  32. How to not fail with your New Year resolution to learn Chinese
  33. 7 things Chinese students should do during the winter vacation
  34. 9 answers to questions about Pinyin and pronunciation
  35. The forking path: A human approach to learning Chinese
  36. How to figure out how good your Chinese is
  37. An introduction to extensive reading for Chinese learners
  38. Celebrating 10 years of Hacking Chinese with reflections and discounts
  39. Why you should listen to the Hacking Chinese Podcast
  40. Dealing with Chinese characters you keep mixing up
  41. When spaced repetition fails, and what to do about it
  42. Why learning Chinese pronunciation by using English words is a really bad idea
  43. Chinese is fascinating and exciting, not weird and stupid
  44. Are mnemonics too slow for Chinese learners?
  45. How to get honest feedback to boost your Chinese speaking and writing
  46. Diversify how you study Chinese to learn more
  47. Learning Chinese words: When quantity beats quality
  48. The key to unlocking your first semester of Chinese
  49. Why not going to China now could actually be good for your Chinese
  50. How to not teach Chinese characters to beginners: A 12-step approach
  51. What important words are missing from HSK?
  52. Should you learn to speak Chinese before you learn Chinese characters?

Music used in the intro and outro: “Traxis 1 ~ F. Benjamin” by Traxis, 2020 – Licensed under Creative Commons Attribution (3.0)