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Learner Reviews & Feedback for Chinese for Beginners by Peking University

18,129 ratings

About the Course

Nowadays, there is an increasing number of people who are interested in Chinese culture and language. And it is useful to know about the language when coming to China for travel or business. This is an ABC Chinese course for beginners, including introduction of phonetics and daily expressions. After taking this class, learners can have a basic understanding of Chinese Mandarin and make basic conversations of daily living such as exchanging personal information, talking about daily arrangements and food, asking about price, introducing the city and the weather, telling your hobbies etc. Selected topics and situations come from real life scenarios and can be used for everyday communications. In addition to the dialogues, the selection of reading materials and practice activities will make the content as rich and varied as possible, in order to stimulate the learners’ interests. This is an elementary course on Chinese speaking. The learners don’t need to study Chinese characters, so it is easier to follow and complete this course....

Top reviews


Apr 24, 2020

She teaching very well! Easy to understand, her accent is very clear to understand, lesson is very useful to and might can use it for real. Thank you for lovely teaching and lovely lesson

Thank you


Jun 16, 2020

Awesome experience it was a comprehensive and informative course. I learnt alot. Thank you coursera for providing us such a nice and global platform to enhance skills and knowlegde by sitting at home.

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4351 - 4375 of 5,058 Reviews for Chinese for Beginners

By 토리

Jun 19, 2018


By Yoonah K P

May 11, 2017


By Eva L

Oct 8, 2016


By Svitlana P

Jan 21, 2016


By José L A L

Jan 14, 2016


By Gutemberg F

Dec 1, 2015


By Deleted A

Sep 13, 2021

A great and comprehensive course overall; as a complete beginner, I did take away a lot. However, I wish the instructor had dedicated a section in each lecture, or at the beginning of the course, to go over the grammar points. Three examples would be: (1) the positions of different parts of speech in a sentence (especially in a question); (2) noun-verb-adjective relations; and (3) when to use or not to use "to be" verb (shì). This way, it'd be much easier for students to formulate sentences and grasp the basis of them. One more trivial issue is that in the later weeks, some words have the "ar" or "anr" finals (as in "zài nàr", "zài nǎr", "yīdiǎnr", and "wánr yóuxì"), but these finals weren't introduced at the beginning of the course, and in the lectures the instructor didn't elaborate on how to pronounce them or why they were there.

By Valerie D

May 29, 2020

I enjoy the flexibility of taking the course wherever I am. I can put into use all the things that were taught, on a regular basis. I would have liked information or side notes about sentence structure. Was not able to complete the notes at the end. I was trying to see if I could print it and I couldn't go back to it. I liked the addition of the characters in the notes. The exercises were helpful and the instructor spoke clearly so I could hear the pronunciation. It would be nice to listen to dialogues of what was learned to develop the listening part of the language. My greatest gratitude to all those that made this course possible. Thank you. Xie xie.

By Katherine B

Oct 29, 2016

The course provided a solid, clear, and friendly introduction to the basics of speaking & understanding spoken Mandarin, as well as to how Mandarin is written in the Roman alphabet. Vocabulary and grammar points were introduced at a pace that was never too overwhelming. I'd have liked the quizzes to be based on listening to a dialogue or watching a video and then testing comprehension, rather than just on vocabulary. But on the whole, I was pleased. It was exciting, right as the course was ending, to see that I could have a tiny conversation of the "Do you like autumn?" and "We are taking the subway to school" variety with a Chinese colleague.

By Walid H

Jul 14, 2018

Quizzes were very easy. I was expecting more questions and some more Chinese / English sentences in the quizzes. I mentioned a mistake in the quizz concerning 'numbers' but nobody bothered to answer me. It was a teacher mistake and / or computer but definitely it was not mine. I hope that in the future the course will be improved, the quizzes more difficult and some sentences be included in these quizzes whether in English or in Chinese (pinyin). The teacher could have included at least two Chinese ideograms in each course in order to get familiarized with them, such as : exit / pull / push / toilet / taxi stop / etc... Thanks.

By Andrea N

Jun 20, 2018

It's a good course to learn chinese for beginners. The skills you learn/improve the most in the course are pronunciation and vocabulary, which I think are the most important for a beginner, because them allow you to speak with some fluency. I missed a little explanations about gramar and syntax, but I asked in the forums about them, the problem is that often doubts aren't answered there. I also missed characters, but it's perhaps understandable that in a beginners course they aren't already introduced. Chinese is so difficult and it requires many years of study, so I think in general it's a complete course for a beginner.

By Cristina F

Aug 23, 2018

La profesora explica muy bien y en muy buen inglés, mucha importancia a la pronunciación y aprendí. Curso básico, aunque se quedan muchos cabos sueltos en la versión gratuita (ejemplo, solo da las horas en punto, nunca llega a decir los pronombres ni explicar si hay tiempos verbales y otras cosas muy básicas que son el primer estadio de todos los aprendizajes de idiomas). Punto negativo: nadie revisa a los "subtituladores" y en el español se pueden leer cosas como "[coreano]" "esto no lo entiendo" o algo raro en una lección que decía "papá, ¿esto qué significa? Está en coreano". O similar.

By Deleted A

Sep 22, 2015

The course is a very practical approach to the language. The main goal of it being to help you get by in the country. It's title should be Surviving in China 101. Although misleading for people wanting to learn the language to an extensive level, it's definitely a good base to have and to build on. The material is presented in a very accessible manner and the quizzes help you master the key elements acquired within each session. Overall, great class if you plan visiting the country and want to be able to get by without a translator as we all know that not all Chinese natives speak English.

By Ethan C

Feb 21, 2021

I really enjoyed this course. The instructor was very thorough, really patient with everything, I could understand her clearly. The way she taught wasn't rushed, and she seemed to be having a good time while doing it. If I have any feedback, it would be that there would be a little more ear training, alongside the reading portions. Listening to native speakers really helps solidify the phonetics of such a challenging language such as this one. Regardless, thank you this was very informative and I'm excited to continue on my journey to fluent Mandarin (however long that takes).

By Yulia B

Nov 8, 2015

Everything is very well! Ilike the material and the professor who is teaching us. She is very good. Thank you very much. But the only problem for me is that the wrong pronunciation is given by the professor. For me it wasa psycological issue. Because, I would remember the variant how you should not do! AndI think it is better to make an example only the right variant and repeting this several times as a tongue twister. During the course I am trying to avoid this wrong examples, trying to scroll later and not to hear them. Everything else I like very much!

By Cornelia H

Aug 23, 2015

This course includes major topics of daily life. After having completed all lessons with Professor Xiaoyu Liu, the student will be able to express himself/herself in many useful situations. This fast result of some basic Chinese is very motiviating to complete the course and to continue studying this fascinating language. The only drawback may be the lack of some corresponding Chinese characters. However, this may exceed the scope of this Coursera course. Maybe there will be a course Chinese for Beginners 2 in future. If so, I would certainly participate.

By Belinda N

Mar 12, 2022

I absolutely LOVED this course. The only frustrating thing I have experienced is the time when assistance was needed to overcome system errors or help was needed when struggling with submission of some of the assignments. There is no help available and therefore, because I want to complete and not quit halfway, I had to do these assignments over and over and over and over again using various methods, until the system accepted it. But, overall, I am very satisfied with the course and will definitely recommend it to my friends. Keep up the good work!

By Brendan

Oct 6, 2015

Excellent course for a beginner or post-beginner as the fundamentals of pronunciation are dealt with slowly in the first half and then it races ahead with useful language and vocabulary for everyday contemporary situations like talking about hobbies, using the internet, etc etc. Stylistically, the Professor may seem dry and mechanical to some but I liked her. No fluff. She moves at quite a pace. For false-beginners, would have bene nice to ave had access to the Chinese vocabulary during the course not at the end. Looking forward to the next course.

By R. L H M E a R L H E

Aug 6, 2017

This was a great beginner's Chinese course and therefore a great review for me. Although I had studied Chinese before, there were some lessons that I had never learned academically, but had acquired from everyday life living in China, and therefore, those lessons were interesting to sit through to see how the sentences are created This was very useful for understanding the structure, which goes beyond merely acquiring a language through daily conversation. It provides for a better understanding of the functionality of the language.

Thank you.

By Eric L

Dec 29, 2022

An excellent course for absolute beginners like myself. It's very difficult to hear the tones at first and work out how to pronounce the syllables. Getting the numbers form one to ten was tricky and I needed to create my own English phonemic transcription based on what I think it sounded like because I kept tripping over the Pinyin.

PS There's a couple of things I'd like to discuss with Marayam or an active mentor about the course.

I wasn't able to get the textbook for "Chinese Characters for Beginners." Can somebody help me find it please.

By Nina F

Feb 28, 2020

This was an excellent course for learning Beginner's Chinese. I really thought the instructor did a good job in teaching Mandarin. She spoke in a way that could be understood. She pronounced the words in a clear way and did a good job of explaining how to pronounce them. My only suggestions for the course would be to improve the subtitles for the lecture videos and to maybe improve the extended exercises a little bit. Other than that, the course is great. I would totally recommend this course to anyone wanting to learn Beginner's Chinese.

By Alberto F O

Jun 8, 2017

El curso ha sido increíble. Una verdadera aproximación al idioma chino en su sentido mas básico.

Me interesa la filosofía, la historia y las costumbres del pueblo chino. Y este curso ha sido un verdadero regalo.

Aunque los subtitulos los he elegido en español, Xiaoyu Liu se dirige en inglés, lo cual para algunos puede ser un problema, tanto en las lecciones como en los exámenes. En mi caso, me ha servido -además- para mejorar mi idioma ingles -escritura y dicción. La profesora habla muy bien el ingles.

Saludos y muchas gracias.

By Richard T

Dec 22, 2020

Good course but better for review or supplement to a live course or gor refreshing knowledge of basic Chinese; otherwise, some aspects, notably tones, might be difficult using only matetials in this course; course is too short, just 7 weeks; more like a half-course. No final exam to pull all material together. Drawbacks include no capacity to practice speaking except for talking to yourself; you might be saying something wrong, even embarrassingly wrong, or just have unintelligible pronunciation, but nobody can correct you.

By Bianca S

Jun 17, 2017

As a person that has had some Chinese exposure before and after some of these lessons, I find them informative, yet still much in want. Some things the instructor explain was done poorly, others in good understanding. I can't complain about the lack of hanyu writing, but to randomly have them in the notes in the self studies was less than helpful towards the self lessons. Overall, I still consider this a good course to start off anyone and easy and simple enough to break them into bigger and better studies with it.

By John C

Jan 16, 2017

The course is just brilliantly structured. I imagine that this is a set of expressions to start a journey of love with the Chinese language and culture.

I did miss a bit explanations on the gramatical structure of chinese sentences. I.e. position of verbs, times, places, pronouns in the sentences. I kind of figured them out, being them different to the structure of western languages. Google Translate helped often to understand this structure and words.

The teacher is JUST lovely. Many thanks for a lovely work!