The Chinese language proficiency test, or Hanyu Shuiping Kaoshi (HSK), is a standard test designed to check the Chinese language proficiency of non-native Chinese speakers. The HSK committee under the Ministry of Education is responsible for organizing the test, setting, reviewing and marking the examination paper, and issuing certificates. The HSK is divided into primary, medium and advanced levels. Whoever passes required standards receives a commensurate Hanyu Shuiping (HS) certificate.
The HSK certificate may serve as:
1.Credentials for practical HSK required for studying in Chinese universities or taking part in exams for graduate students.
2.Credentials for a certain level of the Chinese language or being excused from learning the corresponding Chinese courses.
3.Credentials for employers to judge the HSK of applicants.
The HSK is held regularly both in China and overseas annually. The test in China is held twice a year at designated universities in Changsha, Beijing, Shanghai, Tianjin, Dalian, Wuhan, Nanjing, Guangzhou and Changsha, etc.; the test abroad is held once or twice a year, entrusted with local universities or institutions of higher learning in more than 20 countries including Singapore, Japan, the Republic of Korea, and Canada.
Preparatory education on the Chinese language for International students in China
Chinese is the major teaching language for International students in Chinese universities. Books, periodicals, and reference materials in university libraries and archives are mostly in Chinese. International students have to have a command of Chinese to a certain level in order to finish their studies smoothly.
Undergraduate, Master Degree or Ph.D students and Visiting Students who didn't learn Chinese or whose Chinese proficiency doesn't meet the needs of subject studies before coming to China, have to learn basic Chinese for one or two school years upon arrival. Visiting Students and graduate students who are taught directly in foreign languages, still need to pick up some Chinese for the convenience of daily life and study.