China is one of the world’s oldest civilisations and is, in the 21st century, the most heavily populated nation in the world, with over 1.3 billion people. Mandarin Chinese is the most widely spoken first language in the world. For the last few years, China has been Aotearoa New Zealand's fastest growing market for international visitors.
By developing competency in the Chinese language, students will gain insight and access to Chinese culture. Understanding the society and culture of this historic yet modern nation is becoming increasingly important as China overtakes more traditional western nations in terms of economic power, cultural relevance, and international influence.
- The Chinese programme at UC provides a wide range of courses in both the language and the studies of Chinese literature, thought, tradition, culture, and society. It is backed by a team of staff specialising in language, literature, philosophy, film, and culture.
- The Chinese language courses at UC aim to develop language competence in modern standard Chinese in both its spoken and written forms.
- The Confucius Institute at UC is part of the global CI network jointly established by Hanban (Beijing), University of Canterbury | Te Whare Wānanga o Waitaha (Ōtautahi Christchurch), and Huazhong University of Science and Technology (Wuhan). It was the first such institute in Te Waipounamu South Island.
No previous knowledge of the Chinese language is required to study this subject at UC.
Students who have some ability in the language should contact the Subject Coordinator for advice on the most appropriate course of study. Direct entry into language classes other than CHIN 151 is through a placement test and/or discussion with the Subject Coordinator.
UC offers a major and a minor in Chinese as part of the Bachelor of Arts.
To complete a major in Chinese within the Bachelor of Arts, you will need to take the following courses throughout the degree:
- three 200-level CHIN courses
- Plus at least two CHIN courses (30 points) from any year level.
It is highly recommended that students complete some Chinese language courses during their major study. The 100-level language courses are for absolute beginners or those with very little previous experience in Chinese language. Students with a high level of Chinese language proficiency may be given direct entry to 200-level language courses.
CHIN 352 is an advanced language course required for all Chinese major students.
For the Chinese minor in the Bachelor of Arts, Bachelor of Commerce, Bachelor of Science, Bachelor of Sport Coaching, or Bachelor of Youth and Community Leadership, you will need to take these courses throughout your chosen degree:
- 75 points in 100 to 300-level CHIN courses, with at least 45 points at 200-level or above, and at least one Chinese language course
Learning about influential languages and cultures is advantageous for many careers around the world as graduates are increasingly required to be culturally competent, globally aware, and ready to work internationally.
Career opportunities for graduates in Chinese include teaching Chinese in Aotearoa New Zealand schools, working in international trade, in tourism and related industries, for Manatū Aorere | Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade, and other government departments.
Recent UC graduates have become interpreters/translators, TESOL teachers, import/export brokers, secondary school teachers, policy analysts, tourism marketing officers, and travel agents. Others have gone on to professions such as law, accounting, engineering, and business in Aotearoa New Zealand, China, and other Asian countries.
Find out more about what you can do with a degree in Chinese.
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