Still accepting Fall 2019 registrations - Winter 2020 term registration is now open!
  • Multiple levels
  • Small class size – max. 12 students
  • Native-speaking & experienced instructors
  • Affordable tuition – $360 per level
  • 4 terms per year – each 10 weeks long
  • Convenient downtown location

The Mandarin Chinese language program offers students, without prior background either from schools or homes, classroom group classes of eleven different levels to acquire a solid foundation of the language and the ability to apply the language in life. Throughout these eleven levels, the four basic skills of listening, speaking, reading and writing are pursued in concert and are used to reinforce one another. To find your level, please refer to the level description or use our self-evaluation guide. Students who may have previously studied the language at school, or have experienced the language at home, are recommended to have a phone interview with one of our Mandarin teachers for proper placement, before registering.

Classes meet at the Institute once a week in the evenings or on Saturday mornings. Our teachers are all native-speaking and experienced. We maintain small class sizes to enable adequate time for conversation in every class. If you have further questions, please call Jane Edwards, ILI’s Foreign Language Coordinator, at 202-686-5610 extension 105. Enroll now!

Schedule              Register Now!

Still accepting Fall 2019 registrations - Winter 2020 term registration is now open!

2019 Term:Session Dates:Registration Deadline:Discount ends:
SummerJun. 24-Aug. 31, 2019Monday, Jun. 17, 2019May 20, 2019
FallSep.16-Nov. 23, 2019Monday, Sep. 9, 2019Aug. 12, 2019

2020 Term:Session Dates:Registration Deadline:
WinterJan. 13-Mar. 21, 2020Monday, Jan. 6, 2020
SpringApr. 6-Jun. 13, 2020Monday, Mar. 30, 2020
SummerJun. 29-Sep. 5, 2020Monday, Jun. 22, 2020
FallSep.21-Dec. 5, 2020Monday, Sep. 14, 2020

Mandarin Chinese Level Description

Offered on: Thursdays: 6:15 - 8:45 pm; or Saturdays: 10:00 am -12:30 pm. Enroll now!

Objective: The course is to provide students the most basic skills in studying Mandarin; to understand the differences between traditional and simplified characters and the benefits and disadvantages of both, to master the pronunciation.

Learning Outcome: Upon completion of this course, students will be able to pronounce Mandarin correctly, including tones, read and write around 100 words, introduce oneself or others, exchange greetings, ask about someone’s nationality, talk about family members, ask about someone’s profession, express time, dates and age, arrange a date or an appointment, and invite someone to a dinner or movie.

Topics: Chinese pronunciation system, surnames and full names, basic and ordinal numbers, particles – “的de” “吗ma” “呢ne”, nationalities, greetings and introductions, measure words, question pronouns, dates and time.

Textbooks: "Integrated Chinese Level 1 Part 1" pack of 3 books (textbook, workbook and character), $107, lessons 1-3 & review
Offered on: Tuesdays: 6:15 – 8:45 pm, or Saturdays: 10:00 am - 12:30 pm.Enroll now!

Objective: To strengthen the pronunciation; to understand stroke order in writing characters; to learn the basic radicals in characters; to recognize 100 new characters.

Learning Outcome: After completing this course, in addition to reading a minimum of 150 new words, students should be able to talk about hobbies, visiting friends or welcoming guests, set up an appointment on the phone, ask for favors, talk about daily routines and habits, and talk about studying Chinese vocabulary and grammar.

Topics: Word order in Chinese, go + action, verbs or adjectives as predicates, modal verbs, preposition “在zài” “给gěi”, particle “吧ba” “了le”, adverb “就jiù” “才cái”, double objects, directional complements, descriptive complements.

Textbooks: "Integrated Chinese Level 1 Part 1" pack of 3 books (textbook, workbook and character), $107, lessons 4-7 & review
Offered on: Wednesdays: 6:15 – 8:45 pm. Enroll now!

Objective: To enable students to hold uncomplicated communicative tasks in straightforward social situations; to express personal meaning on learned phrases or re-combinations of them.

Learning Outcome: Students will master at least an additional120 words and start writing simple sentences in Chinese characters. Students should be able to hold simple conversations regarding school life, purchase clothes and shoes independently, comment about several modes of transportation, and describe traffic routes.

Topics: The position of Time-When expressions, series of verbs/verb phrases, past tense and future tense, comparison sentence structures, topic-comment sentences, daily used associated conjunction structures.

Textbooks: "Integrated Chinese Level 1 Part 1" pack of 3 books (textbook, workbook and character), $107, lessons 8-10 & review
Offered on: Thursdays: 6:15 – 8:45 pm. Enroll now!

Objective: To comprehend and compose more complex sentences; to study etymology of basic characters; to converse with much advanced vocabularies and be understood by interlocutors who accustomed to dealing with non-natives.

Learning Outcome: Upon completion of this course, students can expect to compose complete paragraphs, apply sophisticated vocabulary and construct compound-complex sentences. Students should also be able to talk about climate and the weather, order dishes and drinks in a restaurant, ask for and give directions, make suggestions, describe duration of time, describe someone’s appearance, and talk about common illnesses with a doctor.

Topics: Weather patterns, complex comparison structures, ordering Chinese dishes, partially agree or disagree with others, reduplication of adjectives and verbs, action in progress, verbal phrases and subject-predicate phrases used as attributives, time duration, describe a past tense action, 把(bǎ) construction, location adverbs.

Textbooks: "Integrated Chinese Level 1 Part 2" pack of 3 books (textbook, workbook and character), $116, lessons 11-15 & review
Offered on: Mondays: 6:15 – 8:45 pm. Enroll now!

Objective: To provide students the abilities to actively participate in most informal and limited formal conversations related to work, school, home or leisure activities; to make structured arguments.

Learning Outcome: By the end of this course, students can expect to write paragraphs with ease as well as carry conversations with greater fluency. Students will be able to politely accept and decline an appointment, describe current and ideal living quarters, name common pieces of furniture, discuss and negotiate rent, talk about sports, present vacation plans, describe and compare cities, book airplane tickets, and check in at the airport.

Topics: Verbal complements – descriptive, potential and directional complements, approximate number, question pronouns used in statement sentences, continuation, duration of actions, status particle 着(zhe), passive-voice sentences, question pronouns as indefinite references (whoever, whenever, etc.).

Textbooks: "Integrated Chinese Level 1 Part 2" pack of 3 books (textbook, workbook and character), $116, lessons 16-20 & review
Offered on: Mondays: 6:15 – 8:45 pm. Enroll now!

Objective: To recognize minimum of five hundreds characters while able to write half of them at least; to study Pinyin and Character Texts simultaneously; to write compound-complex paragraphs; to converse with greater ease and confidence.

Learning Outcome: Students will be able to use both oral and written Mandarin with greater ease. More specifically, students will be able to give a detailed self-introduction, describe living quarters, to disagree tactfully, order food and drinks with the knowledge of Chinese regional cuisines, shop and bargain in Mandarin speaking settings, state their major area of study and academic department, and talk about career plans and goals.

Topics: The dynamic particle 了(le), the 是(shì)…的(de)construction, connecting sentences, existential sentences, topic-comment sentence structure, the emphatic 是(shì), rhetorical questions, education system: China vs. US, complex resultative complements.

Textbooks: "Integrated Chinese Level 2 Part 1" pack of 3 books (textbook, workbook and character), $116, lessons 1-5 & review
Offered on: Tuesdays: 6:15 pm - 8:45 pm. Enroll now!

Objective: To provide students the abilities to narrate with ease and confidence; to negotiate a bargain when shop; to discuss about everyday life; to participate in ease on conversations in routine and social situations.

Learning Outcome: The students will be able to talk about Chinese dating and marriage customs, describe someone’s personality, discuss uses of the internet, talk about educational expenses in China, discuss part-time jobs for college students, talk about friendships, briefly introduce the geographic features of China and the US, and plan a trip to China.

Topics: Adverbials and 地(de), 的(de), 地(de)and得(de) compare, set phrases, complex potential and descriptive complements, 来(lái) connecting two verb phrases, adverb 可(kě) and 并(bìng), 过(guò) indicating past experience.

Textbooks: "Integrated Chinese Level 2 Part 1" pack of 3 books (textbook, workbook and character), $116, lessons 6-10 & review
Offered on: Thursdays: 6:15 – 8:45 pm. Enroll now!

Objective: To provide students the abilities to actively participate in most informal and limited formal conversations related to work, school, home or leisure activities; to make structured arguments.

Learning Outcome: When successfully completing the course, students can expect to converse with accuracy, clarity and precision. They will also be able to talk about Chinese traditions and festivals, describe famous Chinese historical tourist sites, and discuss the development and modernization of Chinese cities, talk about daily routines and health issues, and talk about Chinese women’s social status changes.

Topics: The usage of status particle 着(zhe), reduplication of measure words, particle 过(guò), particle 啊(a) and 嘛(ma), numerals in idioms, multiple attributives, disyllabic words becoming monosyllabic, 使(shǐ) pivotal sentences, pronoun 某(mǒu), 是(shì)...的(de) to affirm a statement.

Textbooks: "Integrated Chinese Level 2 Part 2" pack of 3 books (textbook, workbook and character), $119, lessons 11-15 & review
Offered on: Wednesdays: 6:15 pm - 8:45 pm. Enroll now!

Objective: To provide students the abilities to handle with ease and confidence on variety of topics relating to work, school, home, public interests as well as personal interests or individual relevance.

Learning Outcome: Upon successful completion of the course, students can expect to comprehensively narrate and describe all major time frames; misunderstandings are kept to a minimum. Students' vocabulary will be fairly extensive – especially in a chosen area of specialization or interest (for example environmental issues, personal financing, important Chinese historical figures, job interview, time management, life abroad, culture shocks, etc.).

Topics: Adjectives that can be reduplicated like verbs, V着(zhe) V着(zhe), adj + 于(yú), summary of the 把(bǎ) construction, grammar summary – word order in Chinese, frequency adverbs, presentation practice.

Textbooks: "Integrated Chinese Level 2 Part 2" pack of 3 books (textbook, workbook and character), $119, lessons 16-20 & review
Offered on: Wednesdays: 6:15 pm - 8:45 pm. Enroll now!

This course is designed for students who have achieved an advanced level and is conducted entirely in Mandarin Chinese. The course is centered on a series of readings which analyze a variety of issues in the contemporary Chinese-speaking world, addressing such subjects as overpopulation, housing and education. Learners will be presented with cultural information and be provided with opportunities for discussion at an advanced level. Learners will develop their reading and writing skills, acquire new vocabulary-building strategies and become acquainted with both formal and informal vocabulary and phraseology.

Objective: To consolidate both reading proficiency and cultural knowledge, leading to an advanced level of spoken and written communication. Learners will focus on clarity and precision, as well as more nuanced expression, while also considering aspects of style and rhetorical devices, such as metaphor and simile.

Outcome: Learners will develop advanced reading comprehension skills, while enriching vocabulary in a variety of subject areas. Learners will also perfect their spoken and written communication through the acquisition of more nuanced speech and writing through a consideration of style and rhetorical devices.

Topics: This level focuses on themes surrounding contemporary issues such as population density, overpopulation, housing and education. Grammar topics include adjective reduplication, adverbials in comparative sentences, causative verbs, zero pronouns and existential sentences.

Textbook: Reading Into A New China, Volume 1 (2nd Edition) Duanduan Li and Irene Liu, Cheng and Tsui, $55

Lessons: Chapters 1 to 5, pages 1 to 110, plus supplemental material selected or generated by the instructor.
Offered on: Mondays: 6:15 – 8:45 pm. Enroll now!

This course is designed for students who have achieved an advanced level and is conducted entirely in Mandarin Chinese. The course is centered on a series of readings which analyze a variety of issues in the contemporary Chinese-speaking world, addressing such subjects as overpopulation, housing and education. Learners will be presented with cultural information and be provided with opportunities for discussion at an advanced level. Learners will develop their reading and writing skills, acquire new vocabulary-building strategies and become acquainted with both formal and informal vocabulary and phraseology.

Objective: To consolidate both reading proficiency and cultural knowledge, leading to an advanced level of spoken and written communication. Learners will focus on clarity and precision, as well as more nuanced expression, while also considering aspects of style and rhetorical devices, such as metaphor and simile.

Outcome: Learners will develop advanced reading comprehension skills, while enriching vocabulary in a variety of subject areas. Learners will also perfect their spoken and written communication through the acquisition of more nuanced speech and writing through a consideration of style and rhetorical devices.

Topics: This level focuses on themes surrounding contemporary issues such as professional life, marriage, and the status of women. Grammar topics include temporal connectives, compound types, directional complements, Chinese punctuation marks, and various rhetorical devices.

Textbook: Reading Into A New China, Volume 1 (2nd Edition) Duanduan Li and Irene Liu, Cheng and Tsui, $55

Lessons: Chapters 6 to 10, pages 111 to 232, plus supplemental material selected or generated by the instructor.

Program Details

$360 for a 10-week one level class per student, $720 for a 10-week accelerated class per student. Au-Pairs can receive a 10% discount on tuition with proof of their status. Only one discount applies. Enroll now!
May be purchased at the time of registration or at the Institute before or on the first day of class. Prices are subject to change at any time. Once received by the student, books and other materials are the property of the student and are non-refundable. Tax exempt organizations or individuals need to provide proof of sales tax exemption before being charged. No retro-active refunds of sales tax.
Regular group classes meet once weekly (or twice for the accelerated class) in the evening (6:15-8:45 pm) or on Saturday mornings (10 am-12:30 pm) for 10 weeks. Each session is 2.5 hours.
All classes are held at Rhode Island Ave NW, Suite 100, Washington, DC 20036. We are within walking distance from the Metro's Dupont Circle (South exit) and Farragut North stations. Parking garages are close by and parking on the street is available after 6:30 pm.
Minimum 3, maximum 12 students. We recommend signing up as early as possible so we can adequately plan for all classes. If the minimum enrollment of at least 3 students per class is not met, we will have to cancel that class after the registration deadline has passed. In case of a cancellation, students will be given the opportunity to change classes, postpone their enrollment or request a full refund.
Our program requires each student to participate in weekly quizzes, which will be graded, based on a “Pass” or “Fail” system. There will be a final quiz that will measure the sum of the instructional objectives for the course. Grades are verbally communicated to students at the end of each class/course, and are marked on the attendance/performance sheet. Students must have completed and passed at least 70% of the quizzes to move to the next level.
It is important for students to attend every class meeting. It is also important that they arrive on time for class. We cover a lot of material in each class. The instructor cannot repeat material for students who are absent or come late. Students will be marked absent when they do not come to class. Missed group classes may only be made up if the same level is being offered on another day and the class is not at full capacity. Students who arrive 15 minutes after the advertised starting time will be marked late. For every 3 times that the student is marked as late, it will count as a missed hour. If we notice that a student’s attendance is in danger of falling below 70%, we will issue an attendance report to the student.
We issue certificates at the end of the semester and they can be ordered at the front desk. In order to be eligible to receive a certificate or pass to the next level, you are required to attend a minimum of 70% of the classes and have a “Passing” grade. We will need a couple of days in order to verify your attendance and passing grade before issuing the certificate.
ILI’s foreign language group programs are accredited by ACCET (Accrediting Council for Continuing Education & Training), and we also offer 2.5 Continuing Education Units (CEU’s) per every successfully completed course, 5.0 for the accelerated courses. Upon request, our Certificates of Completion can include the CEU’s earned per semester.
The International Language Institute reserves the right to cancel any class if deemed necessary. Prior to commencement of class, students will be given a full refund. In the event of cancellation after the commencement of class, the pro-rata portion of the unexpended tuition will be refunded. The prorated amount of refundable monies will be determined by the ratio of classes completed to the total number of classes in the scheduled program. The International Language Institute reserves the right to assign substitute instructors whenever necessary.
No refunds are issued for any reason after the registration deadline for the term (see Schedule above). Missed group classes may only be made up if the same level is being offered on another day and the class is not at full capacity.
Classes are cancelled in accordance with federal government closings (not school closings!) due to inclement weather. Please check public announcements on radio, TV and the Web; or call ILI at (202) 362-2505. Closure are also posted on our Facebook page at https://www.facebook.com/ILIinDC.
Please contact our Foreign Language Coordinator, Jane Edwards, at (202) 686-5610 ext. 105 or at jedwards@ilidc.com.