Elementary Chinese language courses are designed for beginners who do not have any prior knowledge of the Chinese language or have only some very basic knowledge.


  • Prerequisite: Nil (little or no prior knowledge of the Chinese language)
  • Duration: 12 weeks
  • Textbook: Developed in-house

The Elementary course is based on a textbook developed in-house, designed by La Trobe Confucius Institute staff. Instructors will provide learning materials and exercises for each class and students will be provided complimentary audio files to facilitate your independent study after class.

Learning Outcomes

(Speaking and Listening)

After completing Elementary Chinese, you will be able to:

  • Greet and introduce yourself and others
  • Ask for someone's name and provide your name
  • Ask and talk about your family and hobbies
  • Talk about age and occupations
  • Conduct simple conversations in Chinese on a range of topics

(Reading and writing)

After completing Elementary Chinese, you will:

  • Read sentences (Pinyin) with correct pronunciation, tones, intonations and rhythms
  • Recognize approximately 150 Chinese characters
  • Write at least 20 characters
  • Understand basic Chinese sentence structure

(Chinese Culture)

During our Elementary course, you will learn more about Chinese culture and history, customs and social etiquette, value systems, cultural taboos and current affairs. You will understand the formation of characters by learning the meaning of some basic radicals, which will help you guess the meaning of different characters.

Teaching Modes

Teaching aids:

  • Pictures
  • Multimedia
  • On-line software
  • Audio and video resources


  • Lectures and language practice
  • Demonstration
  • Role play
  • Discussion
  • Simulation


No formal assessment will be conducted. You will receive consistent feedback from the instructor regarding your learning progress. You will receive an official Confucius Institute Completion Certificate after you finish the course (80% of the attendance is required for this Certificate).

After completing our courses, you may be able to enrol in HSK I (Chinese Language Proficiency Test Band One) to test your Chinese language proficiency. This may lead you to apply for scholarships to study in China.

Online Resources