Here’s a story: in 2015, I did my first MandarinX course and quite liked it. Last year, I did the second one. And then, when the third instalment was announced, I thought it could be a good idea to refresh a bit of Mandarin in my memory. So I decided to try another basic course, TsinghuaX (TM01x Tsinghua Chinese), and see how it compares with MandarinX.
Now that edX scrapped their free honor code certificates, and I don’t have any spare money to pay for a “verified certificate”, I am doing these courses purely for myself.
Tsinghua Chinese: Start Talking with 1.3 Billion People
Just like MandarinX, TsinghuaX is a six-week course with estimated effort of 4 hours/week. Each of the six lessons contains the following sections:
- Dialogue (several short videos and quiz)
- Characters (several short videos and quiz)
- Listening comprehension (quiz)
- Tea time with Peter (study tips and cultural notes)
Here are the topics of TsinghuaX:
- Lesson 1: Greetings
- Lesson 2: Self-introduction
- Lesson 3: Transportation
- Lesson 4: Food
- Lesson 5: Accommodation
- Lesson 6: Shopping
I was so inspired by this course that I decided to start yet another blog, just some symbols, where I present one symbol (usually a Chinese character) a day and write a short story about it.
Now back to MandarinX.
Basic Mandarin Chinese – Level 3
Here are the topics of MX103x:
- Lesson 1: Movies
- Lesson 2: Talking about studying Chinese
- Lesson 3: Health / going to hospital
- Lesson 4: Sports / getting fit
- Lesson 5: Staying in touch / 21st century telecom
- Lesson 6: Talking about studying (again!) and dating
Estella, as always, was super-charming. However, listening to the dialogues, even with my level of understanding Mandarin, I had a distinct feeling that nobody talks like that in real life.
“Physical appearance isn’t everything, but I do like women who are shorter than me.”
“Your figure is very good, so you’re probably interested in exercise, too.”
“If I could find a girl like you that’s this perfect, it’d be too good to be true.”