• lang dorm chinese new year 2
  • chinese table
  • Chinese program pic3
  • Chinese program pic 3
  • Chinese program pic7
  • Chinese program pic6
  • Chinese program pic5
  • img 0471
  • img 0544
  • img 0595
  • Previous
  • Next

Community-based learning activity with first graders from the Mandarin Immersion Program at Glenwood Elementary School in Chapel Hill, NC

    • img 0427
    • img 0451
    • img 0471
    • img 0487
    • img 0495
    • img 0512
    • img 0543
    • img 0544
    • img 0561
    • img 0575
    • img 0592
    • img 0595

Chinese New Year Gala


Chinese Language Program

The Duke Chinese language program teaches Mandarin Chinese, which is the most commonly spoken language in the world and an official language in China, Taiwan, and Singapore. The program aims to provide students with an education that facilitates a well-rounded development of communicative competency (listening, speaking, reading and writing), academic proficiency and cultural awareness in Chinese. . Students can expect to receive a high quality of instruction in Chinese language and culture with a holistic curriculum that is integrated into theDuke Study in China (DSIC) from the Chinese Program at Duke. A major and minor with concentration in Chinese are also available in the Department of Asian and Middle Eastern Studies.
The language curriculum is divided into two tracks: Regular track and alternative track. The regular track is designed for students who were raised in homes where a non-Chinese language is spoken and who study Chinese as a foreign language. The fundamental courses for this track include Elementary Chinese, Intermediate Chinese, Advanced Chinese, and Chinese Language and Society.  The alternative track is designed for students whose family members spoke the Chinese language with them while they grew up, but they were raised in a non-Chinese speaking country. The student’s oral and aural Chinese proficiency could be close to that of native Chinese speakers, but reading and writing skills are variable. The language courses for the alternative track include Literacy in Chinese, Intensive Literacy in Chinese, Readings in Modern Chinese, Topics in Chinese, and Contemporary Chinese Culture.   Note that Classical Chinese in Modern Context is available to students from both curriculum tracks.  Content-oriented instruction incorporating learning materials adopted from original resources, such as literature, news broadcasting, critiques, historical texts, is prevalent in all upper level Chinese courses.

Goals of the Chinese Program

The curriculum of the Chinese language program promotes language learning in a rich cultural context. While the learning of linguistic elements is essential to the fundamental courses, learning of the target culture, history, and social etiquette embedded in or related to the language is integral to every course. The curriculum systematically prepares the students to develop language and cultural competencies through highly structured and interactive classroom instruction and abundant learning opportunities outside of classroom. The goals of the language curriculum in the Chinese Program use Proficiency Guidelines from the American Council on the Teaching of Foreign Languages (ACTFL) as referenceand they are as follows:
The student will be able to:             
  1. participate in public discourse on a wide range of complex topics
  2. understand diverse public media in which Mandarin Chinese is the principal language of communication.
  3. read authentic materials for adult learners, do rhetorical analysis of complex text
  4. write expository and expressive essays with 'shumianyu' (literary writing style in Chinese)
  5. develop cross-cultural understanding of the values, attitudes, and beliefs in contemporary Chinese society

Chinese Language Program Director:

Chinese Language Program First year Coordinator:

Chinese Program Faculty

  • white