Chinese Listening for Beginners

Learn the language by listening

Chinese Listening Practice Guide for Beginner, Intermediate, and Advanced Learners

Listening skills are one of the most important elements in learning Chinese. It allows you to be able to actually communicate and make concrete interactions with Chinese people. To help smoothen your communication and improve your listening skills, here are a few tips of Chinese listening practice for beginner, intermediate, and advanced learners.


Aim: To understand basic conversations

At the beginner stage, learners generally would know a limited range of vocabulary and sentences. Therefore, to avoid confusion caused by having too many extra words and complicated sentence structures, it’s suggested that learners focus mainly on understanding the words and phrases that they have learned.

Tip 1: Audio learning

Audio learning is especially useful in balancing your ability between reading and listening. When learning new words, learners usually start with reading, while the listening part may be neglected. So, we suggest that you learn with both textbooks and audio. You can start with listening to the text once, then read it to learn the new words. Listen to the audio once more, this time without reading the text. Understand the context of the sentence to ensure all is understood. Repeat this method whenever new text comes by, and in time, your listening skill will certainly improve.

Apart from textbooks, you can also perform your own audio learning with other materials of your learning level. For example, in LingQ, all their texts are accompanied by recorded audio which you can add to your playlist. In addition, an English translation is also provided. In Edugora, most courses are made for beginners, in which users are taught sentence by sentence. As the courses all come with a short video, it allows you to watch and listen as many times as you like. In MandarinBean, you can access all HSK levels listening materials for free, which include Chinese transcription with pinyin, English translation and vocabulary flashcards. The topics also varies from daily life news to business, from fun stories to Chinese idioms origins.

Tip 2: Real life one-on-one practice

To further enhance your listening skills, practice is essential. As a beginner, being able to practice the content you’ve learned would build a stronger base for improving your listening. Therefore, we suggest you find a native speaker who knows your level well and together, you can conduct practice conversations. It could be a friend, your tutor, or a language exchange partner. The format can be simple Q&A, in which your partner will ask simple questions and you respond accordingly. This can be a fun and engaging exercise, while giving you a taste of putting your knowledge into real life conversations.

           Chinese Listening for Beginners