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Study information

Mandarin Chinese for Cantonese and Heritage Speakers

Module titleMandarin Chinese for Cantonese and Heritage Speakers
Module codeFLM3915
Academic year2024/5
Module staff

Dr Yan Wen-Thornton (Convenor)

Duration: Term123
Duration: Weeks



Number students taking module (anticipated)


Module description

As a speaker of a dialect of Chinese (e.g. Cantonese, Hakka, Min, etc.) in Hong Kong, Guangdong, Fujian etc. or outside China (Singapore, Malaysia, Thailand etc.), this module will help you to build  your existing knowledge and aural/written skills in Mandarin Chinese. You will improve your accuracy in standard Mandarin Chinese and achieve a higher level of competence in both speaking and writing skills. Simplified Chinese characters will be taught and assessed. This module is taught in Mandarin Chinese.

Module aims - intentions of the module

In this module you will improve your oral fluency and written accuracy in Mandarin Chinese using simplified Chinese. On completion of this module, you will be able to:

  •   Review and consolidate the standard Mandarin pronunciation system and increase your knowledge of Chinese idioms and phrases to produce complex texts for academic and specific purposes.
  • Present opinions and participate in discussions in class on a range of topics.  
  • Develop knowledge and understanding of Chinese culture, history and literature through the study of aural, written and visual resources.  .

This module is offered to Chinese dialect speakers (e.g. Cantonese) or people who reside outside mainland China who speak Chinese at home or in their community.

In order to register, you will be required to attend an interview.

Intended Learning Outcomes (ILOs)

ILO: Module-specific skills

On successfully completing the module you will be able to...

  • 1. Demonstrate competence in the use of a wide range of post-advanced Chinese language and knowledge of Chinese culture with strong ability to write and/or research and analyse selective topics with minimal direction from the teacher.
  • 2. Communicate fluently and spontaneously, both orally and/or in writing, on complex topics in Mandarin Chinese; use language flexibly and spontaneously for social and professional purposes

ILO: Discipline-specific skills

On successfully completing the module you will be able to...

  • 3. Enhance standard Mandarin Chinese with accurate pronunciation and perfect intonation
  • 4. Give a structured oral presentation on selected topics in a formal style

ILO: Personal and key skills

On successfully completing the module you will be able to...

  • 5. Work pro-actively with others as part of a team, react and adapt to some unexpected situations as appropriate and solve problems effectively
  • 6. Improve oral skills by presenting coherent arguments and by expressing and defending opinions on a range of topical and abstract issues confidently and precisely

Syllabus plan

Whilst the content may vary from year to year, it is envisioned that it will cover some or all of the following topics:

  • The Evolution of Mandarin Chinese and Pinyin system and Mandarin pronunciation/intonations.
  • Introduction to the writing system of Simplified Chinese characters
  • Cultural comparison between East and West.
  • Chinese history and modern Chinese society.
  • Chinese literature and Chinese art.
  • Confucius and Confucianism.
  • Laozi and Taoism.
  • Technology and the Internet.
  • Chinese news and world news

Learning activities and teaching methods (given in hours of study time)

Scheduled Learning and Teaching ActivitiesGuided independent studyPlacement / study abroad

Details of learning activities and teaching methods

CategoryHours of study timeDescription
Scheduled Learning and Teaching44Language classes
Guided Independent Study106Consolidation of learning; learning activities are supported by various media, including audio-visual resources, and, where appropriate, computer software. The module is taught in Mandarin Chinese.

Formative assessment

Form of assessmentSize of the assessment (eg length / duration)ILOs assessedFeedback method
4 formative tasksVariable1-6Written and Oral

Summative assessment (% of credit)

CourseworkWritten examsPractical exams

Details of summative assessment

Form of assessment% of creditSize of the assessment (eg length / duration)ILOs assessedFeedback method
Presentation5015-20 minutes2-6Written and/or oral (upon request)
Research essay503000 simplified Chinese Charcaters1-2Written (upon request)

Details of re-assessment (where required by referral or deferral)

Original form of assessmentForm of re-assessmentILOs re-assessedTimescale for re-assessment
PresentationPresentation1-2Referral/Deferral period
Research essayResearch essay2-6Referral/Deferral period

Re-assessment notes

Deferral – if you miss an assessment for certified reasons judged as acceptable by the Mitigation Committee, you will normally be either deferred in the assessment or an extension may be granted. The mark given for a re-assessment taken as a result of deferral will not be capped and will be treated as it would be if it were your first attempt.

Referral – if you have failed the module overall (i.e. a final overall module mark of less than 40%) you will be required to submit a further assessment as necessary. If you are successful on referral, your overall module mark will be capped at 40%.

Indicative learning resources - Basic reading

There is no course book for this module. Please see ELE for recommended resources.

Indicative learning resources - Web based and electronic resources

A study pack will be posted on ELE weekly.

Key words search

Mandarin, Chinese, advanced, Cantonese 

Credit value15
Module ECTS


Module pre-requisites

Interview and written placement

Module co-requisites


NQF level (module)


Available as distance learning?


Origin date


Last revision date