We have just completed the first week of third year! I can't believe I am now half way through this degree, perhaps even over half way as 4th year finishes earlier than the previous 3 years. We have a new teacher for 综合 this year, and so far I think she might be the best teacher we've had. She has a great way of teaching, and explains things really well. In both 综合 and 口语 our teachers have said that the major focus this year is going to be 近义词。 This is because our vocabulary is growing, and as it does a common problem we will face is misusing words that have a similar translation in the dictionary, but can't be used in the same way in Chinese. A good example from this first week was 保存/储存，or 职业/行业。
Our other subjects are 中国历史，写作，修辞和阅读。I was really excited about history, and the book is great, but the class so far was uninspiring. It was all focused on getting through the material and prepping for what will be on the exam, so we covered right up until 秦始皇 in one class, which was way too fast. We also did some on 孔子，which ironically we have covered in more detail last year (twice).
Our 写作书 is actually 高级 instead of 准高级，so it's quite challenging, but the first class was laughable. Unfortunately our teacher seems to think we are retarded, and so spent most of the lesson explaining what a sentence is, what a question is, how a question mark/comma works etc. She also calls us 'babies', which perhaps should offend me, but when a 36 year old woman refers to me, a 31 year old man, as a baby, it grinds my gears a bit! Anyway, hopefully this class will improve, and the material in the book looks great.
修辞 was fun, and I am also looking forward to this. We looked at 比喻句 which are pretty straight forward, being as we use them in English all the time. But it's interesting to see how Chinese metaphors differ from English ones!
All in all this was a great first week, and I am excited for this semester! Other good news is that I got a scholarship which knocked my fees down 20%! My teacher said if I had done more with the university then I would have gotten a higher one, so maybe next year!