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Survival Languages: Mandarin

Please contact us for future course dates.

Please contact us for future dates of this course.

Course description

Taking your first steps towards learning a new language? Welcome to our Survival Language courses for beginners. Our Survival Language courses are the perfect starting point when you just know a few words or have no prior experience.

These four-week courses introduce basic grammar, essential frequent vocabulary, and key aspects of pronunciation. They provide a platform to gain basic linguistic skills for everyday life communication. There is an emphasis on speaking and listening for the gist of a short conversation, but you will also acquire relevant cultural information.

Example course structure

Week one: PinYin, character and name

The first lesson will introduce PINYIN – the Chinese phonetic and HanZi – the pictograph Chinese character. Participants will learn characters writing, simple dialogue and create Chinese name. The cultural highlight of the first lesson will be Chinese calligraphy.

Week two: Country, nationality and occupation

The second lesson will introduce the Five Basic sentences which is fundamental in Chinese grammar. This lesson will focus on identity and location sentences. Participants will make self-introduction in terms of name, nationality and occupation. The cultural highlight of the second lesson will be Chinese music.

Week three: Numbers, time and family

On the third week, participants will learn numbers 1-99 in Chinese. Time and date related with numbers will also be covered. This lesson will continue with the other three basic sentences – possessive sentences, sentences of activity and sentences with adjectives. The cultural highlight of the third lesson will be the 12 Zodiac and Chinese New Year.

Week four: Negative and question sentences, food and drinks

On the final week, we will introduce negative and question sentences. Participants will be able to communicate with each other by using newly learned sentences. We will discuss food and drinks. The cultural highlight of the last lesson will be the customs of traditional Chinese festivals.

Course tutors

The course is taught by current Kingston School of Art (KSA) language lecturers.

What to bring

A basic list will be sent to you a week in advance of the course start date. All other materials are provided by Kingston School of Art (KSA).

Booking information

We aim to be fully compliant with government health and safety guidelines whilst running short courses at Kingston University.

View the terms and conditions for booking a short course.


The standard course fee is indicated at the top of this page. If a course has any discounted fees available (e.g. for early-bird booking, alumni or students) these will be clearly outlined on the booking website.

As an educational institution fees for our open short courses do not attract VAT.

Contact us

Short courses team
Kingston School of Art

Tel: +44 (0)20 8417 4066
Contact us

Contact us

Short courses team
Kingston School of Art

Tel: +44 (0)20 8417 4066
Contact us

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