Step One Let us remember lest we forget that Chinese language courses are never designed for “You,” singular but “You” plural, meaning the masses.
The best way to find a great Chinese Language Course is to ask yourself “How do I learn?” If you are a visual learner audiotapes will do you no favors. For those of us that are on the go in this fast paced world, classes and books are a nuisance. Know that learning is a process that is best embarked on by realizing that processes are best understood when we know where they begin. That is step one.
Step Two– Know the relevant questions to ask when looking for a great course. For whom? “You.”
You may not know what questions to ask and that is okay because you are learning. Here is a list of great questions to ask:
1. Are you a beginner, intermediate learner or advanced student?
2. Are you looking to improve your “conversational,” written or listening abilities?
3. Do you need to learn chinese tuition for a business trip or just to go around the corner for coffee?
4. Traveling to China? Which part? – It’s imperative that you know.
Yes, questions are never-ending. So, start here: ask yourself what you need and want from a Chinese language course. When I went to China I needed to be able to order a cheeseburger, catch a train and express my moods and feelings. Thus, I found a perfect course that allowed me to express my needs and wants. If you are going on a business trip you may need to understand much more complicated concepts such as business etiquette, business related words, how to call a cab or book a hotel room and much more. Everyone has different “basic” needs and wants.
Question 4: Traveling to China, Which part? is not to be taken lightly. I recently read an article in the New York Times that highlighted a problem that many Chinese learners overlook. Chinese consists of many dialects and they are not to be compared to accents in any language. Why? you ask. Unlike the many accents that abound within English, the dialects of Chinese are nearly unintelligible to each other. In the New York Times article an older Cantonese man was not able to understand the newer Mandarin speaking immigrants to Chinatown.