Chinese Corner: How to pass HSK test

As many of you know, this Autumn I have started working at a Chinese language center where we train Chinese teachers and offer tutoring for foreigners in Mandarin Chinese. Tomorrow night will be the first event I’m organizing and I wanted to let everyone living in Guangzhou to know about it.

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This event is all about the HSK test. Introducing the different levels of HSK, sharing tips on how to prepare, what to do on the exam and answer your questions about learning Chinese and testing your level. I will share how I learned Chinese and passed HSK6 and other students will share their own experiences.

You can register for the even on Guangzhou Stuff or sending me an email to sara (a) sarajaaksola.com. If you forget to register now problem, you are still more than welcome to join us!

p.s. I’m preparing a new blog post about cultural challenges you encounter even after several years in China. Please subscribe to my blog on the right sidebar to get new posts delivered to your email.

  • Kaiser

    虽这件事和HSK没有关,但我还想说:你最近说你想创作文化区别博客,在这个话题上我观察到,在欧洲和北美,西方人很少说“我们是西方人”。反过来说西方人会说我是挪威人,德国人,法国人,什么的。有时候欧洲人来到北美的时候他们会说“我们是欧洲人”。可是,直到来亚洲之后西方人才会说“我们是西方人”。

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    呵呵 Reply:

    很奇怪么?人总是寻找自我的定义,你在自己国家的时候会说自己是哪个城市的人。

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    Kaiser Reply:

    在美国我是来自亚特兰大市的佐治亚州人。

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    Sara Jaaksola Reply:

    嗯嗯,我以前不认为自己是西方人,可能会说是欧洲人。到了中国以后我就变成了一个西方人。偶尔也会称呼自己“外国人”。

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    Yabin Reply:

    我也意识到了这个现象。我想原因可能是亚洲文化和欧洲文化,北美文化差异实在太大,导致不了解的这些文化的中国人只能通过外貌认为他们都是“西方人”。以我为例,我是在波士顿读书的中国人。以前我脑子里一直有一个“西方人”的概念–白人,金发,大眼睛。我也不知道我是怎么得到这样的概念的。可是后来我读了一本书叫做“Ethnic America”,发现原来没有所谓的“美国人”,其实他们是英裔美国人,爱尔兰裔美国人,德裔美国人,犹太裔美国人,非洲裔美国人,华裔美国人,日本裔美国人…每一个民族都给美国带来独特的文化。后来我和来自欧洲的同学交谈,发现欧洲同学对美国人说“我是欧洲人”,对同样来自欧洲的同学会说“我是西班牙人”,“我是意大利人”或者“我是塞尔维亚人”。我以前不知道会有这么多的不同之处。我觉得这是一个很有意思的现象!可能是因为在中国我们生长在一个几乎单一的民族和单一的价值体系下,对于民族的自我意识不可能有美国人或者欧洲人那么强。为了方便起见,大家干脆统一称欧洲人或者美国人为“西方人”。

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    Kaiser Reply:

    你的分析极其好,让我印象深刻!我也想说,由于历史理由,美国人倾向根据种族分类人。白人,黑人,黄人,红人,等。不了解种族,不了解美国。譬如虽然根据民族我是个英德后裔,但是在美国我不根据民族描述我自己。只说我是白人。奇怪却实话。万一你不知道,在现代美国英语中,黄人叫亚洲人,红人叫美洲印第安人。太复杂了!以我为例我比较喜欢说,有美国国籍的话,就是美国人!最简单,最准确!算了。 这个白人得上班。谢谢你选择来美国读书!

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    Yabin Reply:

    哈哈,你的中文才让我印象深刻!我已经习惯了和美国人用英语交流,用中文和美国人交流感觉很有趣。另外美国社会对不同价值观的包容让我学到了很多在中国学不到的东西,我很珍惜。祝你工作愉快!

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    Kaiser Reply:

    直到上上个月当我用了五个钟头乘坐高铁从苏州到北京时以后才知道美国的铁路系统确实落后极了。中国的高铁/动车系统极其好。

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  • Alyssa Studebaker

    我真佩服你。恭喜你最近的成就。通过汉语水平考试并不容易。你的故事有点儿像我自己的。我也是在中国学的。区别是我曾经住在东北。在那儿有一个大城市本地人叫冰城。另外,我的专业不是中文。目前,我住在美国。几年后,我也打算考HSK。都是为了在中国当硕士留学生。你能不能给我参谋一下?我真想考上第五级。

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    Kaiser Reply:

    看来你已经准备好了参加五级。别等!Go for it!

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    Sara Jaaksola Reply:

    Alyssa, 根据你的中文水平,你可以考虑一下直接考6级。先做个模拟考试看一看你的水平怎么样,先试一试5级,太容易的话,就试一下6级。

    你也不需要‘几年’那么长的时间去考HSK吧。你的中文看起来很好啊!

    你把模拟考试做完以后,告诉我你的成绩吧。我们一起看一看你可以怎么准备。

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    Alyssa Studebaker Reply:

    嗯,好点子。孔子学院网站有汉语水平考试模拟。而且,那个网站很专业。谢谢你们。我欣赏你们的鼓励。为了考上清华大学,我需要考五级。北京大学硕士研究生必须考六级!太难了。我参加模拟考试后就告诉你们我的成绩是什么。圣诞节快乐喔!

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    Kaiser Reply:

    必胜!

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  • NotachineseThanksGod

    Really?!!
    I don’t know in which China-Planet are you talking about.

    With all respect, China Sucks Big time!,

    I’ve been all over the world and China is so far the worst place on earth, let’s talk about Pollution, this past month the air quality index for Shanghai was as high as 560, 34 times above international limit, food poisoning, disgusting what they do with the food, cadmium in the rice, arsenic in the water, duck anus in cooking oil, the list goes on and on.

    Most Chinese people are so racist, against themselves first and against the entire world, the things you see in China are unbelievable, from eating dogs and cats to Chinese people eating endanger species such as Seahorses on stick or sharks.

    A week ago I saw a couple of grandparents having their grandson taking a shit right in the middle of the groceries store, yes, besides the apples and carrots, why not?

    Never heard so many lies and stupidity before in my entire life, for example the city where I lived, Suzhou, the Chinese media call this city “Paradise on earth” Nothing less, “The Venice of Orient” Really? Air quality index is an average of 384 points, so polluted! the city is very modern but everywhere you go you can see poor Chinese older ladies cleaning up the floors with a tiny piece of towel, having to crawl on their knees, or older people going trough the garbage cans looking for cardboard and cans, nothing wrong with hard working people but the locals, the middle and upper class in China treat poor people like garbage, so mean to each other all the time.

    Cheating, lying, being dishonest is totally OK over here, not shame at all.

    Oh God! I could keep on going, the list of atrocities and disgusting things going on in China never ends.

    I have a huge respect for all the hard working Chinese people, however, over all I think China Sucks big time.

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  • Vikas Bansal

    Hi Sara, I am a regular reader of your blog. I got a chance to live in China for 5 months and now I am hooked to Chinese language, but problem is currently I am working outside of China and want to appear for HSK 4, what do you about preparing HSK 4 outside from China, is it more difficult ? Are there substitte e.g. books/online tools which can help me in preparing for exam from here itself. (there is no Chinese speaking population here). I would appreciate your help. Thanks. Vikas

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