Course Summary

Mandarin is one of the most popular languages on the planet. Learning this language will potentially open a window to communicate with over 955 million native speakers.

Mandarin: Elementary 1 is a beginners’ course focusing on the attainment of basic conversational and grammatical skills. It provides an introduction to daily life in the People’s Republic of China (PRC) and is ideal for travellers or those wishing to learn more about the culture and society of Mainland China.

Currently, we have no dates scheduled for this course. Please contact us via email to register your interest.

This 18-hour course focuses on speaking and listening so that students will be able to communicate effectively on everyday topics, such as:

  • Meeting people;
  • Talking a bit about yourself, i.e. where you are from and what you do for a living;
  • Identifying others, asking about nationalities and occupations;
  • Understanding numbers, how to use them for phone numbers, prices and measuring units;
  • Talking about family members and relationships;
  • Basic and common polite terms when you greet others and ask for permission.

Students will learn the fundamentals of grammar so they can construct their own sentences and questions, and they will take the first steps in reading and writing. The course covers basic grammatical concepts, but is primarily aimed at introducing the sounds of spoken Mandarin. Students will learn the Chinese alphabet, the four tones of Pinyin, basic structures of writing Chinese characters, and will practise conversational skills in a variety of everyday situations. The course focuses on oral and aural skills, and developing a good understanding of grammar, through homework and in-class exercises.

By the end of the course students should have:

  • a basic understanding of Mandarin Chinese grammar;
  • a basic vocabulary allowing them to read simple texts;
  • the ability to introduce themselves in Mandarin Chinese, and use the language for a variety of everyday situations;
  • an understanding of the relationship of Mandarin Chinese to other Chinese languages such as Cantonese and regional dialogues in mainland China.

Textbook: New Practical Chinese Reader 1 (2nd Edition), Beijing Language And Culture University Press, 2012. ISBN 9787561926239. 

New Practical Chinese Reader 1 Workbook (2nd Edition), Beijing Language And Culture University Press, 2012. ISBN 9787561926222

Available from:

LANGUAGE INTERNATIONAL, 15 Station Street, Kew East Vic 3102 ph: 9857 0030

Available with companion website access from Georgetown University Press. Companion website access can be purchased by itself.


Also available from:


2nd Floor, 234 Swanston Street
Melbourne, Victoria 3000 
Phone (03) 9663 8822 
Int. Phone +613 9663 8822 
Fax (03) 9663 8821 
Int. Fax +613 9663 8821


***Cancellations or postponements are notified 48 hours before class commencement. Please consider this before purchasing class materials***

For further information please contact Languages Centre on 96520677 or email

Suitable for people who are intending to visit or do business in China, or simply would like to learn a new language and gain cultural insights.

Last updated: October 23, 2019 04:42pm