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roddy

Taking the HSK? Already taken it? Report in here!

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zhen_shuai

Got my results back for the most recent test I took in Oct. 2009:

听力 84

语法 88

阅读 79

综合 72

总分 321

Man, this is frustrating. The first time I took the HSK after about one year of taking college courses in the US and one year at a language school in China I got a 5. Then I went to a cram school for a month and took it again and got a 6. I'd been back in the States for a little over a year this third time, during which time I spent about 9 months in 'advanced' college courses and 3 cramming on my own. Honestly, I think I learned more in the 3 months of cramming... Anyways, I guess I should be happy I got a 7 and didn't do WORSE than before.

I feel stuck at middle intermediate right now. I can carry on a conversation on just about anything, minus special vocabulary, watch TV shows, movies, etc, read blogs, message boards, and get the gist of newspaper articles, books, etc. but the amount of work I feel like I need to do to get to the next level seems disproportionately large, esp when I compare it to the leaps and bounds of the first couple of years. Unlike the European languages I've studied, the longer I study Chinese the harder it seems. Character frequency seems to be the biggest problem: according to this chart, the ~1,500 most common characters make up 95% of a modern text, while the next ~1,500 make up 96-99% and the remaining ~6,000 characters on the chart make up less than 1%.

Thank god for SRS.

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wushijiao
I feel stuck at middle intermediate right now. I can carry on a conversation on just about anything, minus special vocabulary, watch TV shows, movies, etc, read blogs, message boards, and get the gist of newspaper articles, books, etc. but the amount of work I feel like I need to do to get to the next level seems disproportionately large, esp when I compare it to the leaps and bounds of the first couple of years. Unlike the European languages I've studied, the longer I study Chinese the harder it seems. Character frequency seems to be the biggest problem: according to this chart, the ~1,500 most common characters make up 95% of a modern text, while the next ~1,500 make up 96-99% and the remaining ~6,000 characters on the chart make up less than 1%.

Hi Zhen Shuai, you might be interested in a thread that I made here, which discusses strategies for overcoming this inevitable, long plateau of diminishing returns that you reach at an upper intermediate/advanced level. In a nutshell, I'd suggest massive amounts of reading about subjects that you are interested in, combined with lots of (authentic) listening practice. Anyway, congrats on the 7!

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zhen_shuai

@ wushijiao

Thanks for the tips. There is some really good information on that thread you linked to.

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blandmc

OK - Just thought i would make all the beginners out there like me feel better by posting my horrid test results. *smile*

I took the HSK Basic exam in Nov 2009 after only 2.5 months in China. I got:

Listening: 25

Grammar: 44

Reading: 43

Total Score: 112 = HSK Level 1

I am actually surprised I even got Level 1 as the test was MUCH more difficult than I thought it would be.

My background -

- Fluent in Japanese as I lived there 8 years and that was my major in college

- Took 1 beginner Chinese class 16 years ago in college

- Have been traveling in China/Taiwan for work quite often the last 10 years

- Only serious started studying from Sep 2009 when I moved to Shanghai

That said, going into the test I knew about 1500 Chinese words, a good knowledge of basic grammar, plus the advantage of being quite familiar with many other Chinese characters through my knowledge of Japanese.

Knowing that did almost nothing to help me with this test. I studied out of textbooks not related to the HSK, so while I knew more words than needed, I didn't know the words for THIS test. I also had no clue what the test would be like having never even looked at a practice test and I didnt understand what I needed to do in some sections. However, I only wanted to gauge my level at the beginning of my stay in China to have something to look back on as I progress and get an idea of what the test is like.. now I know. So I am OK even with such a horrid score.

So, for any beginners out there considering taking the Basic test, my advice is definitely to study for the test (as opposed to just studying Chinese in general). Next time I will purchase HSK study materials, study the HSK vocab, and take several practice tests.

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JenniferW

As someone else who's also only taken the lower level HSK exam, it's good to hear about the experiences of someone else at this level.

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duncan-china

I'm taking the Basic this Spring in the UK, although I am currently in Beijing for three months. My problem is finding any suitable books, past exams etc for the Basic exam here in Beijing, especially listening tests; loads for the Intermediate and Advanced, but nothing for Basic! Suppose everyone in China is too advanced to take the Basic! Anyone got any ideas?

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chrix

so is the online results page working for anyone? It isn't for me :conf

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blandmc

The online results page didn't work for me for the first 4-5 weeks after the test until just yesterday. Yesterday it worked brilliantly - but that is only 4 days prior to when I can go pick up the results in person.

At least I know prior to the date - as if I didn't even qualify for HSK level 1, then there would be no certificate to go pick up.

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Sarevok

Well, my friend got her results through that website, she even sent me a screen-shot, so it is working... for her at least (she is in China right now)

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renzhe
I can carry on a conversation on just about anything, minus special vocabulary, watch TV shows, movies, etc, read blogs, message boards, and get the gist of newspaper articles, books, etc. but the amount of work I feel like I need to do to get to the next level seems disproportionately large, esp when I compare it to the leaps and bounds of the first couple of years.

Look on the bright side.

At this stage, you need lots of effort, but it is the enjoyable kind of effort -- reading cool literature, chatting with cool people and watching cool movies.

It's more enjoyable than cramming and grammar exercises, but it does take a while.

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chrix

Sarevok, I tried, but to no avail. Asked the local Confucius Institute, they said it should be possible, and they're looking into it why it's not working for me. Also about what test version they will administer this year.

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chrix

I finally got my results by mail, and I'm quite surprised, as I didn't really prepare for it...

听力 86

语法 97

阅读 91

综合 87

总分 358

which makes this an 8 at the first attempt. I guess now I can just wait and see what'll happen to the advanced HSK and prepare for whatever version they will administer....

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roddy

None too shabby, congratulations.

With reference to the online system, there may be different center codes for the same . . .er . . center. When I was in Dalian I took the C-Test, then the HSK advanced, at the same place, in quick succession. Both 参考证 s had different center codes on, but only the one for the C-test worked on the system, and I successfully got my HSK Adv results using that.

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chrix

Thanks roddy.

I don't think the CI here administers any other test, the employees over there speculated that it might have to do with the spelling of my name or the order of my family name and given name and presence of punctuation marks or lack thereof etc. (I should have registered with my Chinese name :-?)

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weilian

Don't have the exact scores in front of me, but I barely squeaked by with a 7. Something like a 303.

I took it on the 29th of November and waited 6 weeks to pick it up because I thought I had blown it. I've taken a short break from studying but now I'm itching for another goal, which I think might begin with watching a lot of TV series. I also really want to learn a lot of the super kouyu sayings I hear around me. Young slang, rather than the super 土 北京话 you hear from the foreigners who deign to appear on TV here. Any suggestions on the DVD front?

Will

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dximeng

Just got HSK results from advanced level taken back on October 17th. Despite the certificate being dated the 17th of November, it only made it back to the UK today.

听力 57 /

阅读 62 C

综合 69 B

作文 65 C

口试 63 C

总分 316 C

Overall pass at grade C :P Very happy with that, especially after reading many times here how tough the exam is. (It is tough, but doable with plenty of prep.) Bit surprised at the 口试, I had to answer a question on what is a good student, and couldn't think of anything! And what I could think of I mumbled.

More details about the prep I did are in a post I made over at Skritter (http://www.skritter.com/forum/topic?id=23367286).

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doraemon
听力 86

语法 97

阅读 91

综合 87

总分 358

Wow Chrix, that's a very respectable score for a first attempt. Well done! I think you'll be ready to take the advanced HSK with a few months of preparation. Hope to hear good results from you then!

P.S. When did you become an admin?

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jadeblomma

I know there are two kinds of grades on the new HSK, but what is the percentage of correct answers you need to achieve for these two? Is it better to do for instance 3 with a good grade than 4 and just be accepted?

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chrix

hey Doraemon, thank you for your kind words. Well, the local Confucius Institute is shifting towards the new HSK now, and I think I'll need to wait and see what's gonna happen, and in the meantime I can hang on to my lucky Eight 8)

PS: have a look here

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