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2021 Detailed Introduction of the New HSK Exam – HSK 3.0 Chinese Test

The recently released Chinese Proficiency Grading Standards for International Chinese Language Education is to regulate the formal grading standards of the Chinese language, especially for people who use the Chinese language as the second language for daily life, study, working and other fields.

It marks a new era of the HSK test, the HSK 3.0 Chinese test will replace the old version of the HSK test. 

This grading standard is also applicable as a reference to the New HSK textbooks and the New HSK test system. If you’re preparing for the New HSK test or want to achieve a better performance in the New HSK test, this post can help you get ready for it. 

You must have known about the advantages of learning Mandarin Chinese, so the Chinese language learning plan has been fit into your schedule already. Knowing about the latest Grading Standard can help you better make a personalized one-on-one Mandarin learning plan and set periodic learning goals.


If you’re more interested in the FAQ of the New HSK Exam, you may skip the introduction part and go straight to the bottom of this page to find out relevant answers. 


The Summary Table of the quantitative criteria of Chinese Proficiency Grading Standards for International Chinese Language Education

LevelGradeSyllableChinese CharacterChinese WordsGrammar Points
Elementary126930050048
2199/468300/600772/127281/129
3140/608300/900973/224581/210
Intermediate4116/724300/12001000/324576/286
598/822300/15001071/431671/357
686/908300/18001140/545667/424
Advanced7-9202/11101200/30005636/11092148/572
Summary1110300011092572
Notice: there are two different quantities in front and behind the “/” mark. The first number represents the quantity of the newly increased language elements in this grade, while the second number stands for the accumulated language elements of the specific grade. At the advanced level, there is no specific quantitative criterion in accordance with different grades.

Detailed descriptions of different grades of the Chinese Proficiency Grading Standards for International Chinese Language Education

Level 1 – Elementary [Grade 1, Grade 2, Grade 3]

At the elementary level, you’re supposed to be able to understand simple language materials so that you can practise efficient social interactions with limited topics, such as expression related to daily life, school life, working circumstance and social activities, etc.

After qualifying at this New HSK Elementary level, you should be able to use simple interaction strategies to facilitate your daily Chinese expressions. It is also necessary to have an initial impression about Chinese culture and cross-culture intercommunication after completing the study of this level.

The quantitative criteria of this level are being proficient with 608 syllables, 900 Chinese characters, 2,245 Chinese words, 210 grammar points and also being able to handwrite 300 Chinese characters.

Grade 1 – New HSK 1

In this grade, you will show

Verbal communication abilities:

Being able to practise basic listening, speaking, reading and writing skills;

Being able to have a brief conversation on the most familiar topics and tasks or being able to reply to others for the simplest social purpose.

Check out the NEW HSK 1 COMPLETE CHINESE VOCABULARY LIST WITH EXAMPLES AND AUDIOS.

Topics and tasks:

Being able to converse on topics of personal information, daily life, dining, transportations and hobbies, etc; and being able to practise relevant social interactions.

For example: being able to use the most basic etiquette terms and phrases to interact with different people; being able to recognise and identify specific simple information in a public environment and make an inquiry about it, such as knowing how to order food in a Chinese restaurant.

All of these conversation practices can be performed in the one-on-one Chinese class, in the small group Chinese class at Keats School or via taking online Chinese lessons with Keats Team. 

Quantitative indicators:

Being proficient with 269 syllables, 300 Chinese characters, 500 Chinese words, 48 grammar points.

  • Listening skill: being able to understand the simple conversation concentrating on words and simple sentence as well as topics and tasks related to Grade 1. The language materials are spoken in a proper and clear pronunciation at a slow pace (should not less than 100 words/min). Students should also be able to comprehend basic information by using facilitative tools such as picture and other material objects.
  • Speaking skill: being able to master the syllable of Grade 1 quantitative indicators and pronounce these syllables properly. Being able to use vocabularies and grammars of Grade 1 to conduct topic expression and interaction tasks. Being able to use basic spoken expressions and also use words and common simple sentences to have a simple conversation.
  • Reading skill: being able to recognise and read syllables, Chinese characters and Chinese words that relevant to Grade 1 quantitative indicator. Being able to use picture and pinyin to comprehend language materials (less than 100 Chinese characters) that limited to the Grade 1 grammar and related to the topics and tasks of Grade 1. The reading speed should not be less than 80 words per minute. You should be able to recognise the most common daily signs and symbols as well as being able to get basic information from simple notes, tables and maps.
  • Writing skill: being able to master handwriting of 100 Chinese characters listed out in the List of Elementary Handwriting Chinese characters. Having a basic comprehension of the strokes and writing orders of Chinese characters as well as the proper usage of marks. Being able to copy write Chinese characters with a speed not less than 10 words per minute. Being able to write properly with basic written expressions; using simple words and common sentence to fulfil basic personal information and notes.

As an expert in teaching Mandarin Chinese, the Keats Teaching team has developed its own special techniques and teaching construction to help all Mandarin learners study the Chinese language fast and easily. If you’re looking for a professional HSK test preparation course, then Keats School should be your first choice.

Grade 2 – New HSK 2

In this grade, you will show

Verbal communication abilities:

Being able to practise basic listening, speaking, reading and writing skills;

Being able to have a brief conversation on relatively familiar topics and tasks or being able to reply to others for basic social purpose.

Topics and tasks:

Being able to converse on topics of simple social activities, family life, study arrangement, shopping, dining and personal feelings etc; and being able to practise relevant social interactions. 

For example: being able to order food in a Chinese restaurant (10 Chinese dishes you must try when learning Chinese in Kunming)and discuss personal hobbies with friends in Chinese (How to speak Mandarin in 30 days); being able to recognise and identify the information on an admission and registration format and fill it in.

All of these conversation practices can be performed in the one-on-one Chinese class, in the small group Chinese class at Keats School or via taking online Chinese lessons with Keats Team. 

Quantitative indicators:

Being proficient with 468 syllables (199 increased), 600 Chinese characters (300 increased) (Checking out the 500 most common Chinese characters), 1,272 Chinese words (772 increased), and 129 grammar points (81 increased).

  • Listening skill: being able to understand the general conversation or speech that related to Grade 2 topics and tasks, as well as contents dominated by a single sentence or contains compound sentences. The language materials are spoken in a standard and clear pronunciation at a slow pace (not less than 140 words per minute). Students should also be able to comprehend basic information by using facilitative techniques such as gestures and facial expressions.
  • Speaking skill: being able to master the syllable of Grade 2 quantitative indicators and pronounce these syllables properly. Being able to use vocabularies and grammars of Grade 2 to conduct topic expression and interaction tasks. Being able to use basic spoken expressions and also use simple sentences to have a simple conversation, statement and social activities.
  • Reading skill: being able to recognise and read syllables, Chinese characters and Chinese words that relevant to Grade 2 quantitative indicator. Being able to use diagrams, pinyin and dictionary to comprehend language materials (less than 200 Chinese characters) that limited to the Grade 2 grammar and related to the topics and tasks of Grade 2. The reading speed should not be less than 100 words per minute. You should be able to gain specific information from introductive and declarative language materials. You should be able to read and understand general notice and e-messages as well.
  • Writing skill: being able to master handwriting of 200 Chinese characters listed out in the List of Elementary Handwriting Chinese characters. Having a basic comprehension of the strokes and writing orders of Chinese characters as well as the proper usage of marks. Being able to copy write Chinese characters with a speed not less than 15 words per minute. Being able to write properly with basic written expressions; using simple sentences to introduce personally related basic information within the given duration, with no less than 100 Chinese characters.

Grade 3 – New HSK 3

In this grade, you will show

Verbal communication abilities:

Being able to practise general listening, speaking, reading and writing skills;

Being able to have a brief conversation related to basic topics and tasks about daily life, study and working events;

Being able to practise daily social interactions.

Topics and tasks:

Being able to converse on topics of travelling experience, course schedule, cultural and sports events, festivals and customs, education and occupation etc; and being able to practise relevant social interactions.

For example: being able to talk about itinerary and customs that related to traditional Chinese festivals such as the Spring Festival; being able to send relatively formal invitations by both spoken language and writing letters (How to make friends with Chinese ); being able to reply to other’s invitation.

All of these conversation practices can be performed in the one-on-one Chinese class, in the small group Chinese class at Keats School or via taking online Chinese lessons with Keats Team. 

Quantitative indicators:

Being proficient with 608 syllables (140 increased), 900 Chinese characters (300 increased), 2,245 Chinese words (973 increased), and 210 grammar points (81 increased).

  • Listening skill: being able to understand the general conversation or speech that related to Grade 3 topics and tasks, as well as contents dominated by a long single sentence or contains simple compound sentences. The language materials are spoken in a standard and clear pronunciation at a moderate speed (not less than 180 words per minute). Students should also be able to comprehend most of the information by using facilitative techniques such as to differentiate speaking voice, speaking tone, and speaking speed.
  • Speaking skill: being able to master the syllable of Grade 3 quantitative indicators and pronounce these syllables properly. Being able to use vocabularies and grammars of Grade 3 to conduct topic expression and interaction tasks. Being able to use a few complex sentences to have simple communications or discussions. 
  • Reading skill: being able to recognise and read syllables, Chinese characters and Chinese words that relevant to Grade 3 quantitative indicator. Being able to comprehend language materials (less than 300 Chinese characters) that limited to the Grade 3 grammar and related to the topics and tasks of Grade 3. The reading speed should not be less than 120 words per minute. You should be able to understand the basic complex sentences, to comprehend declarative and descriptive language materials so that you can have a general impression of the materials and also the details. The skill of using dictionaries to learn and understand new words and characters is necessary for this grade. You should be able to initially master the skill of fast reading and extensive reading as well.
  • Writing skill: being able to master the handwriting of 300 Chinese characters listed out in the List of Elementary Handwriting Chinese characters. Being proficient with the strokes and writing orders of Chinese characters as well as the proper usage of marks. Being able to copy write Chinese characters with a speed not less than 20 words per minute. Being able to write general content with basic written expressions; being able to write emails, notices and a short descriptive paragraph within the given duration, with no less than 200 Chinese characters. The writing is supposed to be basically smooth and fluent with clear expressions.

Level 2 – Intermediate [Grade 4, Grade 5, Grade 6]

At the intermediate level, you’re supposed to be able to understand multiple topics of language materials to conduct social activities smoothly. You should be able to have paragraphed expressions about complex topics (How to improving your Chinese writing?), such as expression related to daily life, working events, occupations and social cultures, etc.

After being qualified at this level, you should be able to use common interaction strategies. It is also necessary to have a general understanding of Chinese cultures, such as knowing about the customs of Chinese Festivals and cross-cultural intercommunication after completing the study of this level.

The quantitative criteria of this level are being proficient with 908 syllables (300 syllables increased), 1,800 Chinese characters (900 Chinese characters increased), 5,456 Chinese words (3,211 Chinese words increased), 424 grammar points (214 grammar points increased) and also being able to handwrite 700 Chinese characters (400 Chinese characters increased).

Grade 4 – New HSK 4

In this grade, you will show

Verbal communication abilities:

Being able to practise considerable listening, speaking, reading and writing skills; Being able to do the initial interpretation.

Being able to have completed, constant and efficient social interactions on complex topics about daily life, study and working events.

Topics and tasks:

Being able to converse on topics of community life, state of healthiness and wellbeing, campus life, daily working, animals and plants (How to say fruits name in Chinese) etc; and being able to practise relevant social interactions.

For example: being able to briefly describe his/her conditions and communicate with doctors when in the hospital (how to see a doctor in China); being able to draft a simple advertisement of a part-time job and reply to other’s inquiries.

All of these conversation practices can be performed in the one-on-one Chinese class, in the small group Chinese class at Keats School or via taking online Chinese lessons with Keats Team. 

Quantitative indicators:

Being proficient with 724 syllables (116 increased), 1,200 Chinese characters (300 increased), 3,245 Chinese words (1,000 increased), and 286 grammar points (76 increased).

  • Listening skill: being able to understand informal conversation or speeches that relate to Grade 4 topics and tasks (less than 400 Chinese characters). The language materials are spoken in a neutral tone without an obvious accent. The speaking speed is normal or slightly fast (180 to 200 Chinese characters per minute). Besides, the students should be able to get rid of the impact of unnecessary repetitions and pause, and then obtain accurate information about the talk. In the aspect of the cultural elements, students should be able to sense the ideas that not expressed in words, such as implications and other relevant cultural contents.
  • Speaking skill: being able to master the syllable of Grade 4 quantitative indicators and pronounce these syllables properly with a neutral tone. Being able to have paragraphed expressions initially at this stage. Being able to use relative complex sentences to describe the development of an event or complicated situation, to have a brief statement and express personal feelings. Being able to conduct general conversations with fluent expression and proper usage of words.
  • Reading skill: being able to recognise and read syllables, Chinese characters and Chinese words that relevant to Grade 4 quantitative indicator. Being able to comprehend language materials (less than 500 Chinese characters) that limited to the Grade 4 grammar and related to the topics and tasks of Grade 4. The reading speed should not be less than 140 words per minute. You should be able to understand general compound sentences, to comprehend declarative and descriptive language materials and simple argumentations so that you can understand the core information of the language materials as well as comprehend relevant cultural content and draw the inference based on what you got.
  • Writing skill: being able to master the handwriting of 100 Chinese characters listed out in the List of Intermediate Handwriting Chinese characters. Being proficient with the constitution of Chinese characters. Being able to use simple sentence formats to form paragraphed expression; being able to write a brief declarative and descriptive paragraph within the given duration, with no less than 300 Chinese characters. The writing is supposed to consist of proper words and a combination of different sentences format. The writing should be completed with fluent delivery. Students should be able to conduct common practical writing in a correct format.
  • Interpretation skill: being able to do initial interpretation tasks; being able to translated topics and tasks related to Grade 4 with basically completed content; it is important for students in this grade to realise the cultural facts involved in the translating process. Being able to conduct interpretation during an informal reception occasion and companionship. Being able to translate simple declarative and descriptive written language materials with certain accuracy.

Grade 5 – New HSK 5

In this grade, you will show

Verbal communication abilities:

Being able to practise considerable listening, speaking, reading and writing skills; Being able to do the basic interpretation.

Being able to have completed, smooth and efficient social interactions on complex topics about daily life, study and working events.

Topics and tasks:

Being able to converse with topics of social relationships, lifestyles, learning methods, natural environment and social phenomenon etc; and being able to practise relevant social interactions.

For example: being able to discuss or communicate with others about the common social phenomenon; being able to reply to emails content, to introduce personal learning tricks and advice (trying out these useful apps to help you transit smoothly when learning Chinese in China).

All of these conversation practices can be performed in the one-on-one Chinese class, in the small group Chinese class at Keats School or via taking online Chinese lessons with Keats Team. 

Quantitative indicators:

Being proficient with 822 syllables (98 increased), 1,500 Chinese characters (300 increased), 4,316 Chinese words (1,071 increased), and 357 grammar points (71 increased).

  • Listening skill: being able to understand informal and formal conversations or speeches that relate to Grade 5 topics and tasks (less than 500 Chinese characters). The language materials are spoken in a neutral tone without an obvious accent. The speaking speed is normal or slightly fast (200 to 220 Chinese characters per minute). The students should be able to get rid of the impact of unnecessary repetitions and pause, or noisy environmental influence, and then obtain accurate information about the talk. In the aspect of the cultural elements, students should be able to sense the relevant cultural contents involved in the conversations or speeches.
  • Speaking skill: being able to master the syllable of Grade 5 quantitative indicators and pronounce these syllables properly with a neutral tone. Being able to complete related topic expressions and interaction tasks. Being able to have basic paragraphed expressions at this stage. Being able to use relatively complex sentences to communicate with others and describe an event with details. Being able to fully state a personal opinion with fluent delivery that full of complicated thoughts and emotions. Being able to conduct general conversations with proper usage of words and a certain level of logical thought.
  • Reading skill: being able to recognise and read syllables, Chinese characters (Are you looking for the best recourse of learning Chinese vocabularies?) and Chinese words that relevant to the Grade 5 quantitative indicator. Being able to comprehend language materials (less than 700 Chinese characters) that limited to the Grade 5 grammar and related to the topics and tasks of Grade 5. The reading speed should not be less than 160 words per minute. You should be able to understand complex compound sentences, to comprehend declarative, descriptive and argumentative language materials so that you can understand and summarize the core information of the language materials as well as comprehend relevant cultural content and draw the inference based on what you got. At this grade, students are also supposed to well master the reading skills such as fast reading, extensive reading and filtering key information.
  • Writing skill: being able to master the handwriting of 250 Chinese characters listed out in the List of Intermediate Handwriting Chinese characters. Being able to analyse the construction of common Chinese characters. Being able to use relatively complex sentences to form paragraphed expression; being able to write a general declarative, descriptive and argumentative paragraph within the given duration, with no less than 450 Chinese characters. The writing is supposed to consist of proper words and sentence formats. The writing should be completed with fluent delivery. Students should be able to conduct common practical writing with a correct format and formal expressions.
  • Interpretation skill: being able to do basic interpretation tasks; being able to translated topics and tasks related to Grade 5 with completed content; it is important for students in this grade to process the cultural facts involved. Being able to conduct consecutive interpretation with fluent delivery on an informal occasion. Being able to translate general declarative, descriptive and argumentative written language materials with certain accuracy.

Grade 6 – New HSK 6

In this grade, you will show

Verbal communication abilities:

Being able to practise considerable listening, speaking, reading and writing skills; Being able to do general interpretations.

Being able to have abundant, fluent and decent social interactions on professional topics about the study and working events.

Topics and tasks:

Being able to converse with topics of social life, business affairs, arguments and conflicts, social news, and comparison between China and other countries etc; and being able to conduct relevant social missions.

For example: being able to talk about the differences between China and other countries in aspects of history (Are you clear about the history of China) and culture when being on an informal occasion; being able to understand the social news generally and comment on it.

All of these conversation practices can be performed in the one-on-one Chinese class, in the small group Chinese class at Keats School or via taking online Chinese lessons with Keats Team. 

Quantitative indicators:

Being proficient with 908 syllables (86 increased), 1,800 Chinese characters (300 increased), 5,456 Chinese words (1,140 increased), and 424 grammar points (67 increased).

  • Listening skill: being able to comprehend conversations or speeches that relate to Grade 6 topics and tasks (less than 600 Chinese characters). The language materials are spoken in a neutral tone without an obvious accent. The speaking speed is normal or slightly fast (220 to 240 Chinese characters per minute). The students should be able to get rid of the impact of linguistic mistakes as well as revise, and then comprehend the actual intention of the speaker. In the aspect of the cultural elements, students should be able to understand the relevant cultural contents involved in the conversations or speeches. Watching Chinese films is an efficient way to practise your Chinese listening skill. 
  • Speaking skill: being able to master the syllable of Grade 6 quantitative indicators and pronounce these syllables properly with a neutral tone. Being able to complete related topic expressions and interaction tasks. Being able to make general paragraphed expressions at this stage. Being able to concisely use complex sentences to describe events and scenes. Being able to fluently have a discussion and simple negotiation. Being able to fully express personal opinions and emotions with fluent delivery, abundant word choices, decent language and a certain level of logical thought.

To practice both of your listening and speaking skills, you can search for free online lessons for Chinese learning and practice on Keats School’s website. You can also follow Keats School on other social platforms to enjoy daily Chinese Character learning and interesting tips of Mandarin study.

Facebook: @keatschinese

Twitter: Learn Chinese

Quora Space: Keats Chinese

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Instagram: keats.school

YouTube: Keats Chinese School

WeChat Channel: Keats Chinese


  • Reading skill: being able to recognise and read syllables, Chinese characters and Chinese words that relevant to Grade 6 quantitative indicator. Being able to comprehend language materials (less than 900 Chinese characters) that limited to the Grade 6 grammar and related to the topics and tasks of Grade 6. The reading speed should not be less than 180 words per minute. Students should be clear about the construction and layers of the language materials. Besides, students should be able to comprehend the content precisely and can conclude the main points and information of the language materials. Based on the content, students should be able to have an assumption of the meaning of new words and draw the inference of implicated information. Students are also supposed to comprehend relevant cultural content and well master the reading skills such as fast reading, searching for key information and summarize main thoughts.
  • Writing skill: being able to master the handwriting of 400 Chinese characters listed out in the List of Intermediate Handwriting Chinese characters. Being proficient at analysing the construction of common Chinese characters. Being able to use relatively long and complex sentences to form paragraphed expression; being able to write a common declarative, descriptive and argumentative paragraph within the given duration, with no less than 600 Chinese characters. The writing is supposed to consist of a proper selection of words and sentence formats. The writing should be completed with fluent and consecutive delivery. Students should be able to apply common rhetoric to conduct common practical writing with a correct format and formal expressions.
  • Interpretation skill: being able to do general interpretation tasks; being able to translated topics and tasks related to Grade 6 with completed content; it is important for students in this grade to process the cultural facts involved and conduct a translation that in accordance with the native Chinese expression. Being able to conduct speaking interpretation with fluent delivery on an informal occasion. Mistakes could be revised in time during the interpretation. Being able to translate common declarative, descriptive and argumentative written language materials with accuracy.

Level 3 – Advanced [Grade 7, Grade 8, Grade 9]

At the advanced level, students are supposed to be able to comprehend multiple topics complicated language materials in various formats to conduct profound communications and discussions. Students should be able to conduct decent social activities with complex topics such as social events, academic studies, etc. During the communication, students should be able to demonstrate their logical thinking, consecutive and constructive expressions by flexibly using various social strategies.

After being qualified at this level, you should have a profound understanding of Chinese culture and history with a global view. Students at this stage should also be proficient with cross-cultural intercommunication as well.

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The quantitative criteria of this level are being proficient with 1,110 syllables (202 syllables increased), 3,000 Chinese characters (1,200 Chinese characters increased), 11,092 Chinese words (5,636 Chinese words increased), 572 grammar points (148 grammar points increased) and also being able to handwrite 1,200 Chinese characters (500 Chinese characters increased).

In the advanced level (Grade 7 to Grade 9), there is no detailed clarification of quantitative criteria in each grade.

Grade 7 – New HSK 7

In this grade, you will show

Verbal communication abilities:

Being able to practise well listening, speaking, reading and writing skills; Being able to do initial professional interpreting works.

Being able to have formal, fluent and decent social interactions on relatively extensive and higher-level topics.

Topics and tasks:

Being able to converse on topics of social etiquette, science and technology, culture and arts, sports, emotions and affections, professional curriculum etc; and being able to conduct relevant social interactions.

For example: being able to communicate with participants when attending a relatively formal meeting; being able to read and understand most learning materials of a professional subject as well as to finish assignments of the subject.

All of these conversation practices can be performed in the one-on-one Chinese class, in the small group Chinese class at Keats School or via taking online Chinese lessons with Keats Team. 

  • Listening skill: being able to comprehend general lecture speeches and social news that relate to Grade 7 topics and tasks (about 800 Chinese characters). The speaking speed of these language materials is normal or slightly fast. The students should be able to get rid of the impact of the environment and then comprehend the main facts and views of the language materials. Students should be able to understand the logical construction of the speeches or news, and also be able to comprehend the related social-cultural contents.
  • Speaking skill: being able to master the syllables, vocabularies and grammars of quantitative indicators of advanced level. Being able to conduct topics expressions and interaction tasks of the relevant grade. Being able to make initial paragraphed expressions at this stage. Being able to flexibly use complex sentences to express personal views, have a discussion or debate. The content of the speaker should be fluent in words and sentences with logical thoughts and abundant details. The student’s pronunciation should be accurate with a neutral tone. Students are supposed to use proper words for communication and adjust their expressions according to the actual situation. Being able to use rhetoric to strengthen the emotion of the speaking and also embodies an awareness of cross-cultural intercommunication. Do you know how to apply Chinese internet slang during a conversation? 
  • Reading skill: being able to recognise and read syllables, Chinese characters and Chinese words that relevant to the quantitative indicator of advanced level. Being able to read and comprehend various kinds of articles that related to the advanced level topics and tasks. The reading speed should not be less than 200 words per minute. Students are supposed to be proficient with Chinese expression and thoughts so that they can have a comprehensive understanding of the construction and content of the articles. And they can also draw the inference and summarize the content with a considerable understanding of the cultural content. Students are also supposed to well master the reading skills to independently search for necessary information.
  • Writing skill: being able to master the handwriting of Chinese characters required in the List of Advanced Handwriting Chinese characters. Being able to write practice essays, explanatory essays, argumentative essays and thesis with a considerable length. There should be a clear point of views, layout, proper expressions, standard format and normal logical thoughts in the articles. Students at this stage are supposed to be able to use different kinds of rhetoric in the writing.
  • Interpretation skill: being able to do professional interpretation tasks initially; being able to translated topics and tasks related to specific grade and the translated work should be completed and accurate. On formal occasions, being able to do consecutive translation and interpretation during accompanying. Being able to translate practical essays, explanatory essays, argumentative essays, etc with a considerable length. The translated content should be in accordance with the original content with a proper format.

Grade 8 – New HSK 8

In this grade, you will show

Verbal communication abilities:

Being able to practise well listening, speaking, reading and writing skills; Being able to do basic professional interpreting works.

Being able to have formal, fluent and decent social interactions on various higher-level and professional topics.

Topics and tasks:

Being able to converse on topics of language and literature, economy and politics, Legal affairs, philosophy and history, etc; and being able to conduct relevant social interactions. If you’re self-studying Mandarin Chinese, there is some advice about what to do and not to do when learning Chinese

For example: being able to deliver profound conversation and have a discussion on topics of philosophy, religions and current events; being able to do basic professional interpreting works; being able to express his/her own, call into question and declaim reasons for complaint when there are conflicts.

All of these conversation practices can be performed in the one-on-one Chinese class, in the small group Chinese class at Keats School or via taking online Chinese lessons with Keats Team. 

  • Listening skill: being able to comprehend professional lecture speeches and news with special subjects that relate to Grade 8 topics and tasks (about 800 Chinese characters). The speaking speed of these language materials is normal or slightly fast. The students should be able to get rid of the impact of the environment and other obstacles to comprehend and summarize the main facts and views of the language materials. Students should be able to understand the logical construction of the speeches or news, and also be able to comprehend the related social-cultural contents.
  • Speaking skill: being able to master the syllables, vocabularies and grammars of quantitative indicators of advanced level. Being able to conduct topics expressions and interaction tasks of the relevant grade. Being able to make proper paragraphed expressions and also to apply techniques flexibly at this stage. Being able to have a speech, impromptu talking and debate. During the speaking, students are supposed to be able to express their opinions and thoughts in a comprehensive and decent manner. When speaking, it should be with correct pronunciation, neutral tone, fluent expression and strong logic. Being able to use rhetoric to strengthen the emotion of the speaking and also embodies the ability of cross-cultural intercommunication.
  • Reading skill: being able to recognise and read syllables, Chinese characters and Chinese words that relevant to the quantitative indicator of advanced level. Being able to read and comprehend various kinds of articles that related to the advanced level topics and tasks. The reading speed should not be less than 220 words per minute. Students are supposed to be proficient with Chinese expression and thoughts. Students are also supposed to be proficient with various reading skills to comprehend the content and involved cultural implications precisely. Being able to find out the linguistic and logical issues contained in the articles.
  • Writing skill: being able to master the handwriting of Chinese characters required in the List of Advanced Handwriting Chinese characters. Being able to write practice essays, explanatory essays, argumentative essays and thesis with a considerable length. There should be a clear point of views, layout, proper expressions, standard format and normal logical thoughts in the articles. Students at this stage are supposed to be able to use abundant Chinese idioms, slangs and different kinds of rhetoric in the writing.
  • Interpretation skill: being able to do professional interpretation tasks; being able to translated topics and tasks related to this grade and the translated work should be completed and accurate. On formal occasions, being able to do consecutive translation and interpretation with professional contents. Being able to translate practical essays, explanatory essays, argumentative essays, etc with a considerable length. The translated content should be accurate and in accordance with the original content with a proper format.

Grade 9 – New HSK 9

In this grade, you will show

Verbal communication abilities:

Being able to practise well listening, speaking, reading and writing skills; Being able to do professional interpreting works.

Being able to apply various kinds of techniques and skills comprehensively; being able to have formal, fluent and decent social interactions on various social topics in different scenes.

Topics and tasks:

Being able to converse on topics of academic researches, policy and regulations, business and trades, and international affairs, etc; and being able to conduct relevant social interactions.

For example: being able to participate in business negotiation and debate with the counterpart under a formal circumstance (How will learn Chinese benefit your career?); being able to read and understand documents with formal patterns and terms, such as policies and regulations, or a study report; in addition, being able to make decent comments on the topic.

All of these conversation practices can be performed in the one-on-one Chinese class, in the small group Chinese class at Keats School or via taking online Chinese lessons with Keats Team. 

  • Listening skill: being able to comprehend general lecture speeches and social news that relate to Grade 9 topics and tasks (about 800 Chinese characters). The speaking speed of these language materials is normal or slightly fast. The students should be able to analyse and conclude needed information to properly comprehend involved social-cultural implications.
  • Speaking skill: being able to master the syllables, vocabularies and grammars of quantitative indicators of advanced level. Being able to conduct topics expressions and interaction tasks of the relevant grade. Being able to make proper paragraphed expressions and also to apply techniques flexibly at this stage. Students are supposed to be able to express their opinions and thoughts in a comprehensive and decent manner. When speaking, it should be with correct pronunciation, neutral tone and fluent expression. Being able to use rhetoric to strengthen the emotion of the speaking and also embodies the ability of cross-cultural intercommunication.
  • Reading skill: being able to recognise and read syllables, Chinese characters and Chinese words that relevant to the quantitative indicator of advanced level. Being able to read and comprehend various kinds of articles that related to all kinds of topics and formats. The reading speed should not be less than 240 words per minute. Students are supposed to be proficient with Chinese expression and thoughts. Students are also supposed to be proficient with various reading skills to comprehend the content and involved cultural implications precisely.
  • Writing skill: being able to master the handwriting of Chinese characters required in the List of Advanced Handwriting Chinese characters. Being able to write academic papers and other kinds of essays. There should be a clear point of views, layout, proper expressions, standard format and strong logic in the articles. Students at this stage are supposed to be able to apply various compound sentences and different kinds of rhetoric in their writings to make them literary.
  • Interpretation skill: being able to perform professional interpretations; being able to translate topics and tasks related to this grade and the translated work should be completed and accurate. On formal occasions, being able to do simultaneous interpretation with professional contents with fluent expressions. Being able to translate all kinds of essays. The translated content should be fluent and accurate and in accordance with the original content and style with a proper format.

After reading the post, I hope you are clear about what is HSK now.


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FAQ

When was the New HSK announced?

The New HSK standard is announced on March 31, 2021. This new standard was officially released by the Ministry of Education and the National Language and Writing Committee and will be officially implemented on July 1, 2021. This is the first normative standard for foreign Chinese learners to comprehensively describe and evaluate learners’ Chinese language skills and proficiency.

Why did they draft this new standard of HSK?

Language is the best way to know about a country and explore its culture. The Chinese Proficiency Grading Standards for International Chinese Language Education is the key to mastering and teaching the Chinese language.

Since 1992, the Center for Language Cooperation has formulated and tried out a series of standards about Chinese language learning, such as “Chinese Proficiency Vocabulary and Chinese Characters Level Syllabus”, “International Chinese Teacher Standards”, “International Chinese Language Teaching General Curriculum”, “Chinese Proficiency Test Syllabus”, “Chinese Language Proficiency Test Syllabus” and “The Vocabulary Classification of Syllable Chinese Characters for International Education”, etc. However, with the vigorous development of international Chinese education, it is necessary to upgrade and improve existing standards to build a high-quality international Chinese education standard system.

What are the differences between the old HSK and the new HSK?

“New HSK Standard” has inherited, summarized and improved based on the previous norms and the old HSK standards. This new standard is a demonstration of the scientific development of international Chinese education. Compared with the previous standards, the “New HSK Standard” demonstrates its innovation mainly in the following three aspects:

First, the creation of a new Chinese proficiency grading system of “three levels and nine grades”, highlights the uniqueness of the Chinese language, which stressing on its learner-orientated and teaching practical characteristics. It is a Chinese proficiency grading standard that scientifically and accurately assesses international learners’ Chinese proficiency.

Secondly, the new HSK standard proposes new terms of Verbal communication abilities, Topics and tasks, as well as Quantitative criteria, accompanied with Five language skills (listening, speaking, reading, writing and interpreting), which can better describe and evaluate learner’s Chinese proficiency.

Thirdly, specific quantitative criterion such as syllables, Chinese characters, vocabularies and grammar points are applied to provide clear structures and goals for Chinese language teaching.

What is the HSK test procedure after the new HSK standard released?

The “Chinese Proficiency Test (HSK)” is an international standardized language test that focuses on evaluating learners’ Chinese proficiency when they use it as a second language and practice it in daily communication, study and work events.

After more than 30 years of development, HSK has become an internationally renowned exam and a globally recognized Chinese proficiency testing tool. The “New HSK Standard” belongs to the top-level guideline of international Chinese education. It is used to comprehensively guide the design of Chinese language learning, teaching, testing and evaluation. It also provides a standard for international students to apply for college in China, obtain scholarships, and look for internships and other scenarios.

The “New HSK Standard” has multiple functions and extensive applicability, the most important of which is to serve as a reference standard for the HSK Test. It provides guidance for the design, proposition, implementation, and scoring of the test. After the “New HSK Standard” is published, HSK will optimize and upgrade accordingly, and on the basis of ensuring the stability of the original six levels, it will be fine-tuned to the new grading system with three grades and nine levels.

When will the New HSK Test system be officially launched and how the test works with the newly added HSK 7-9?

The new HSK test will start in March of 2022. There will be a trial test in December of 2021 before it’s officially launched.

The new HSK test will adopt a new pattern of using one paper that contains all questions related to Grade 7, Grade 8 and Grade 9. Students’ Chinese proficiency will be decided according to their final scores of each Grade.

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