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Learner Reviews & Feedback for Chinese for Beginners by Peking University

13,462 ratings
3,865 reviews

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

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.

Sep 16, 2016

Thanks for this course. I like it and this language really so necessary for me and my job. My company in New Zealand - ESKA Ltd (, and we are work with aliens from China.

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26 - 50 of 3,820 Reviews for Chinese for Beginners

By Dee

Feb 11, 2016

I didn't find this course to be too helpful.

By 重宇 長

Dec 16, 2016

I don't like

By Alberto G H

Mar 12, 2019

I have certainly enjoyed this online course to get the basics of Chinese, and I do believe the way it was done has been a great compromise between time and information being shown (that is, the course is really fast to finish with, yet very important information is being given; and on the other hand, not many deep details on grammar are being given, yet various important stuff are definitely discussed). I would certainly recommend it to people who want to get a hint about how does the chinese language work.

The first lessons were extremely useful to learn the way chinese is written and accentuated, the numbers, the colours, the time...All that very simple information which actually makes us feel we start to understand the language itself. However, I must admit that the last lessons (the application of basic language to various daily contexts) were certainly difficult. It was still easy to associate concepts and remember them for some time, but the variety of words is so complex that, I admit it myself, after a few hours it is fairly difficult to remember everything you just did. Some mnemotechnic rules will anyway help a lot to learn some expressions, and I am sure I will never forget those.

Overall, I am really happy to have spent some weeks finishing this course to understand the basics of chinese and never say I do not understand the language at all. I thank Professor Xiaoyu Liu for the time to prepare it, and wish her all the best of successes on getting more people to study her courses. Thank you.

By Daniela B P

Aug 2, 2020

The course was really nice, with a lot of useful and interesting topics and a very good teacher. The pace of the learning was easy and the extended exercises helped to practice a lot more. I'm excited for continuing my learning!

Great job Xiǎoyǔ lǎoshī, xièxiè.

By Alisa K

May 14, 2020

This course is fit to any foreigner beginners in chinese language. It makes me feel like chinese isn't complicated that I have thought. This chinese teacher explains very clarify. :)

By Ekpawee O

May 27, 2020

I think if it will be better if it has Chinese character in video. (or I just didn't know how to see it)

By k11

May 22, 2020

Good day,

I did the whole course and personally I think it was fine in general, but there were some information which should be mentioned at my opinion, for example that there are differences regarding pronounciation between south and north china. In addition, I'm not sure about it, that there where pronounciation mistakes when it comes to tv programms, e.g. for the word like dònghuàpiàn or jìlùpiàn. The mistake where at the end of the word --> piàn. But it is possible that it just depends from person to person how to pronounce it. In any case it differs from other native chinese people from what I heard. It would be nice if someone can explain it.

In some cases I had problems to understand the professor what she said like "tongue marks". This was in a video in the first week I think, but she said those words in another video again and I could understand it there better, so at the end I could figure out what she said, but sometimes I couldn't.

All in all as I wrote, it was fine and learned something new. Thank you for the course. In chinese --> Xiexie ni ge womeng ze tang ke. (I omitted the tones --> too complicated)

By Boris R

Nov 14, 2015

Good course for beginners. In my opinion, its strong point is simplicity (it does not require much effort and yet allows you to learn something useful, and also makes you think that Chinese is not unbearably complex language after all) and broad range of topics (probably gives you all words necessary to survive short trip to China). What I didn't like in this course is lack of explanation: student is required to memorize entire sentences, but nothing was said about word ordering, personal pronouns and other basic structural features of language. I would also like to have more tests/ exercises with feedback, probably some review tests covering previous lessons.

By Sumonrat N

Apr 24, 2020

I’m happy to learn and I want to study Chinese because CHINESE for me It difficult Thank You 😊

By Araditta S

Oct 21, 2018

The teacher was remarkable. She was slow enough giving the student enough time to repeat after her. She made it very interactive and the tasks she put forward at the end of every section were helpful However, after a point they seemed redundant and too easy. They should be made a little tougher and challenging. Furthermore the passing cut off should be a little higher as it is too low. The lessons are spaced too far from each other and stretches over a very long period of time. They should be more compact so all things learnt and retained more effectively and instantly. Nonetheless, the teacher is able to teach Chinese very well for beginners, giving the perfect amount of coursework and relevant information that gives them access to the language. She has endowed the right skills for communication and has a very positive attitude with a smiley face that lifts the spirit of all people wishing to learn Chinese that excites their interest in the beautiful language.

By Makary M

Oct 3, 2018

I have gone through a beginner course before, so for me it was a refresher and an additional practice, although I have learned some new things here and there. I like the content of it and a stress on the conversation. The tests were a little too easy, I'd like them to be more engaging and challenging. Also I was also a bit disappointed in the absence of characters, because I like to at least look at them when I learn a new word, so that I can distinguish them from other characters that sound the same. Other than that it was pretty neat, wasn't a waste of time

By Fabian W

Sep 6, 2015

This is a very good course to learn some basic expressions and, most of all, get a good first grasp of Chinese pronunciation. However I found the course structure quite repetitive over the seven weeks: Every other module is structured in the same way: "Which fruit do you like? Apple, banana, orange...", then the week after it's "Which sport do you like? Basketball, cycling, running". For a seven-week course this was not challenging enough. But it's a good start.

By Alan A

May 1, 2016

This course was effective in testing what was learned and in testing simple, useful expressions, words, and sentences. However, I would have liked to learn Chinese characters along with the pinyin, as in China reading the characters is just as important as speaking. Also, I believe the quizzes were a bit too simple, there should have been more multiple choice answers to chose from, more questions in general, and even some pronunciation practice.

By Valentino M

Aug 15, 2015

Not a very good course layout

By Deleted A

Aug 6, 2016

Course is a little disorganized, and sounds are a little difficult to hear sometimes (in the exercises where you're asked to distinguished sounds, but I guess that's the point of those exercises. I don't quite understand the self-study videos because they're already in the main lesson videos, but otherwise, this is a wonderful course. I mean, I already speak a tonal language so the tones are easy for me, but they shouldn't be too difficult for non-tonal speakers too. Otherwise, this course gets you through the basics pretty quickly without too much emphasis on vocabulary or grammar and without Chinese characters; if you're keen, you'll pick up the grammar as you go along.

On a more technical note, the videos could be of better resolution, but that's not going to impede the course progression or anything. Kudos to this course's contributors!

By Kay B

Aug 23, 2015

If you want to learn some Mandarin and you are not sure where to start...just start here with this Course. It is all verbal and conversational. You do not have to learn Chinese characters and if you have been thinking, "No, Chinese is too hard to pronounce, its a "tonal ;language", blah blah whine whine "...please believe me, Professor Liu Xiaoyu is going to turn that entire generalization on its head and kick it out of the room. She speaks slow and patiently and if you can pronounce the words "seesaw, Jane Eyre, washer-dryer, car, how, why, and maybe" , then, you can pronounce Mandarin. Whats will be understood. Its a seven week course at your own pace and it covers a lot of ground. You will not be disappointed and you will be amazed what you can learn from her. Try it.

By Martin P H J

Mar 7, 2019

I really enjoyed this. Its main strong point is that the pronunciation is very clearly modelled, for students to copy. It covers quite a lot of ground. There are a lot of words in it, but many of them are recycled in later lectures, which helps them to stick. There isn't any grammar explanation, so if you like studying languages more analytically, this might not be the course for you, although as I said, I'd still recommend it if you are new to Chinese pronunciation. The only thing I wasn't particularly impressed by were the quizes, which were a bit easy, but I suppose they want the course to be accessible to as many people as possible, and not to put people off for fear of failing. Thanks for making this course available.

By Tigest A

Jun 30, 2020

Not to difficult for someone who has never spoken a word of Chinese before and also very comprehensive! For anyone interested in taking this course, I would suggest supplementing it with Peking University's Chinese Characters for Beginners course in order to gain a better understanding of some of the sentence structures and individual words that you will run into while taking it. Also, make sure to take notes to remember the various phrases you will learn! This was the first class I completed on Coursera and I am very satisfied and felt as though I gained a lot of practical knowledge! It's also not too difficult to complete and I would definitely recommend it for someone who wants to learn something new in their free time :)

By Elizabeth S

Dec 31, 2016

This course was so much fun. I enrolled on a whim and thoroughly enjoyed it. I'm going to review a few of the modules again to solidify some of the concepts. The videos were all short--maybe less than 5 minutes each, so you have time to absorb what you've learned. If I did it again, I would do a quick review of the previous week's videos before starting the next group to make sure that I was really up to speed. The instructor did a good job organizing and presenting the information. Although it's an introductory course, it covers a lot of area. Numbers, food, hobbies/activities, seasons, months, days, directions, introductions and common phrases were some of the things that I learned.

By Kamal K T

May 20, 2020

For long years since my childhood, I wanted to learn Chinese. I used to listen to songs, radio news, etc. in Chinese. But the general overview was that its a difficult language to learn. So, the desire of learning the language was always unfulfilled. And finally, I landed up in this course. And finally, I understood that I can learn Chinese. It's a wonderful feeling now, that I can go further and master this language. I would like to thank Prof. Xiaoyu Liu and Peking University for developing this course, so beautifully, that I am more interested in the language than ever. I will keep on learning this amazing language and one day, I can pronounce to the world that I know Chinese !!!

By Yamil A B C

Jan 23, 2017

Éste fue mi primer curso del idioma chino. Sinceramente fue muy fácil de entender, para situaciones tan cotidianas que requieren de una comunicación inmediata, éste es el curso adecuado para lograr hacer eso. Como lo dije antes, éste es mi primer curso del idioma chino y fue mi curso introductorio al mismo. Ahora a seguir practicando éste maravilloso idioma. Espero conseguir amigos pronto para practicarlo, incluso lo recomendé a mis amigos para practicar juntos, deberían hacer lo mismo las personas que recién se integrarán, pues ésto requiere constancia y dedicación. Felicitaciones a la profesora Xiaoyu Liu y a la Universidad de Pekín por tan maravilloso trabajo.

By Jenny P M A

May 15, 2020

Mi nombre es JENNY MORENO A y este curso me parecio Excelente curso aprendí muchísimo la Docente es muy preparada Muchísimas gracias es la primera vez que tomo un curso de este idioma por que la verdad estaba demasiado prevenida por que creía que era muy difícil este curso la verdad ha cambiado mi visión hacia esta cultura me encanto a cambiado paradigmas y me permitió demostrarme a mi misma claro con la ayuda de la docente que si puedo muchísimas Gracias a Coursera a la Docente y a Pekin Universitity por esta gran oportunidad muy buena metodología,excelentes recursos y demasiado entendible muchas Gracias Dios mio no lo puedo creer en serio Muchas Gracias

By Francisca R R

Jan 16, 2016

As languages and foreing cultures lover who has taken more than one language course I can say that I really liked this one, I enioyed it so much that I finished it earlier than expected.

The way the information was introduced at every chapter, allowing you to move on and understand each and every word and concept was amazing,. The phonetic's lessons where very simplified and the teacher had the courtesy to repeat the words slowly, at the end it was not that hard. But do not take it for granted, inspite of the fact it is for beginners and the teacher goes step by step, it is quite challenging.

I highly reccommend this course, you will not regret taking it.

By Rita M

Sep 19, 2020

Hice este curso en paralelo a la clase de chino que estoy tomando actualmente y me sirvió para reforzar lo que ya sabía y aclarar dudas. Además de agregar una gran cantidad de vocabulario y adelantar unos pequeños conceptos.

Las explicaciones son claras y las lecciones van acumulando sobre las clases previas. El poder escuchar varias veces los tonos ayuda a fijarlos mejor. Los ejercicios sugeridos son muy útiles y es imprescindible realizarlos para fijar lo aprendido poco a poco.

Creo que lo único que le agregaría sería introducir los caracteres desde el inicio pero puedo entender que lo posterguen para el siguiente nivel.

Extremadamente recomendable.

By Nadzirah D

Jun 1, 2020

As the week goes by towards the end of the lesson, everything is getting harder and messier for a non-native like me haha! But it's not meant in a bad way though and in fact, it's very enlightening to learn new words in a different language! The course really challenges us to put an extra mile by taking notes and to listen to the pronunciation carefully. I honestly confessed that I would not be able to recall more than 50% of the content that I've learnt throughout the weeks. The best way for us learner to be able to memorise highlighted points is to keep on reading the notes and speaking with others for the sake of practising. Thank you Prof! Xie Xie!