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Flexible Group Classes in Shanghai


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Dear All,

I have searched through the froum but not found anything too similar to what I am looking for.

Any advice appreciated.

I'm in charge of finding a Shanghai language school for my colleague since we have recently realized that his Chinese (probably lower intermediate) is affecting his work ability.

I'd prefer to put him in a group class since I feel that this would suit his personality more and motivate him. The issue is that his work schedule changes often so I need somewhere that would allow him to skip classes and make up again later.

Beijing seems to have a lot of places that would allows this, but after speaking to several schools in Shanghai (iMandarin, Mandarin House etc.) they seem to have fewer classes - so skipping and then making up requires real luck with the class schedule.

Any brainwaves, or should I just suggest a private class?


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If your colleague has intermediate Chinese, he doesn't need a traditional classroom. Even disregarding the scheduling problems (skipping classes, etc.) you'll be signing him up for a generic curriculum. 不到长城非好汉 isn't likely to be of much use in the office.

At risk of shilling, one of the things we do at Popup Chinese is hook companies up with teachers who create custom lessons through the service. It works because the experience is social and motivating (the entire company gets access to their own custom content, as well as our general ones), includes custom lessons on your industry, and the mp3+website+face-to-face service (1 hour per week) combination is really flexible. The downside is that at 300 RMB per week it costs more than face-to-face tutoring alone. But asynchronous small-group learning is what most organizations need, and you can always re-use the materials once you have them.

Otherwise, just get your colleague a private tutor and make sure they know what he needs to know at work. Shanghai is more expensive than elsewhere in China for that, but you should be able to find a decent conversation partner for RMB 50 per hour. Advertise at the universities instead of looking for a corporate solution. People are more flexible than schools.

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