Chinese Learning Resources

Enriching Your Chinese Studies Online

Shanghai at Twilight (Kevin Ho/Flickr)
Kevin Ho/Flickr

Whether you're new at learning Mandarin or speaking fluently, there is a wealth of online materials to help you support your learning. But another important use of the internet for learning language is connecting to other learners, sharing you experiences, asking questions, and getting a broader understanding of the culture and country the language evolved in. Below are some initial suggestions for enriching your Chinese studies online.

Asia Society’s China Learning Initiatives has also developed and collected a trove of resources over the last 10 years, which you can also view below.

Know of something that’s great but not included in these lists? Help us out and send us a quick note with a link to your suggestion and a brief explanation on why you think it’s important others know about it. If we post it, we’ll list your name as having contributed it!


Resources

Discussion Forums

Below are the resources we found useful or interesting. If you find others, please share them with us, and we'll add them to this collection!

Reddit has a ton of forums where you can ask questions and start discussions, listed below by forum title:

One particularly interesting Reddit thread is an AMA (‘Ask Me Anything’) with Chinese Pod (which, by the way, should be on your list of Podcasts already. If it’s not, add it!). They took questions from Redditors and then posted the highlights on their blog, entitled ‘Six Chinese Study Hacks from Our Reddit AMA.’

Speaking of hacking, there’s a whole website devoted to Hacking Chinese!

Stack Exchange has a section for Chinese learning, too.

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Chinese Learning Apps and Sites

Below are the resources we found useful or interesting. If you find others, please share them with us, and we'll add them to this collection!

We don’t like to endorse one service or site over another, but since the tragic demise of popular Chinese-English (more-than-)dictionary *nciku, we have found some to be pretty solid surrogates:

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General Learning Tools

Below are the resources we found useful or interesting. If you find others, please share them with us, and we'll add them to this collection!

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News and Specialized Topics

Below are the resources we found useful or interesting. If you find others, please share them with us, and we'll add them to this collection!

  • For those of you with a more political bent, Asia Society’s own ChinaFile is a great resource.
  • Sinocism is also a firehose of information about all things happening in China.
  • There are tons of sites that help you keep up with cutting-edge pop culture (especially internet culture). Our top picks are:
    • ChinaSmack: All articles are translated into English from Chinese media sources, and if you hover over the English text, the original Chinese text pops up. This is a great way to advance your reading!
    • TeaLeafNation's crew scans Chinese social media for reaction to big news events and delivers you a broad variety of Chinese voices across the spectrum.
  • Green Honey is a great site that crunches data on various aspects of Chinese.
  • If history is your thing, check this out: China History Podcast
  • Any aspiring legal professionals out there? Ever wanted a source of solid insights into Chinese Law? Look no further than China Law Blog.

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Additional Chinese Learning Resources

See how North Carolina has successfully offered a technology-assisted, distance learning Chinese course.
U.S. Under Secretary of State Judith McHale discusses U.S.-China relations.
A few tips on how to get students to think about the world--and take action--in their target language.
How Confucianism, Daoism, and Buddhism complement one another. Read on to learn about the "fourth teaching."
A look at the man and his teachings that have shaped China in profound ways.
During his trip to China, President Obama emphasized the importance of human connections, particularly among young people, and called on 100,000 Americans to study in China in the next four years.
How six critical qualities--design, story, symphony, empathy, play, and meaning--make learning come alive.
Practical advice for teachers and school leaders on how to create a meaningful school partnerships.
Teaching about the languages of China helps students learn about the diversity of China.
There's an estimated 200 percent growth in Chinese language programs in the United States in just four years. Read about other interesting trend data.
Why and how to start an elementary-level Chinese language program in your school or district.
Some qualities to look for when hiring a Chinese language teacher.
A two-player game said to originate in China, but is played throughout the world. Children practice simple math and gets an enjoyable introduction to strategy.
How the development of writing, paper, the printing press, and internet continues to change China.
An overview of women's roles in Chinese society over time.
This essay looks at the great Eurasian Silk Roads as a transmitter of people, goods, ideas, beliefs, and inventions.
Daoism has folk roots in China but was popularized by the Laozi in the 5th century BCE.
An essay on Confucianism: its roots, premise, impact on society over time and modern incarnations.

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