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patphilly

Where to find more HSK mock tests?

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patphilly

Hi all,

I registered for the HSK level 3 in May and am practising with some real mock tests: at http://chinaeducente...k/hsklevel3.php they provide the explanation booklet (which contains the vocabulary and a sample test) and they also provide 5 different sample exams.

Are there online resources where I could find more than those?

I know that there are some online test materials to be completed online, like on the Hanban website, but it's not really similar to test conditions. Is it possible to find other full exam examples (ideally the PDFs, just the way the exam appears)?

Thanks for your advice!

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edelweis

I am not aware of additional online materials.

Libraries may have books of new HSK mock-up tests.

(such as, libraries of Confucius Institutes and Chinese Cultural Centers, librairies of schools and universities that offer Chinese courses, public or private librairies in Chinese neighbourhoods of big cities, and huge librairies that have books about everything.)

They are also available for sale on Amazon.

Example book

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trevelyan

We have a ton of mock tests at Popup Chinese. Many more than are available from Hanban actually, although a heavier concentration of stuff for the older and more difficult BLCU-run exam. Just visit the HSK test page to get started. If you're looking for free resources

http://itunes.apple.com/us/app/hsk-test/id382098899?mt=8

If you have an iPhone you might also want to look at this iOS app, which is free and comes bundled with several thousand questions. Instant feedback at all three levels. Just remember that upper-intermediate there corresponds more or less to the advanced level on the new test.

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patphilly

Thanks Trevelyan, I had checked the popupchinese website. But I cannot find so many resources: for example, clicking on http://popupchinese....new-hsk-level-3 provides just 8 exercises of HSK level 3, which I suppose pretty much corresponds to only 1 full test. And even this small material is not free.

And the iphone app is nice, but the "beginner", "intermediate", and "advanced" do not correspond exactly to material in specific levels of the new HSK.

So this website doesn't seem very useful, unless I am maybe missing something?

I have tried this other (free) website: www.gurulu.com which does provide lots of questions (both listening and reading) for each new HSK level. The bad thing is that each question has a certain fixed time limit (unlike the real exam, where there is a given time only for the whole set of reading questions).

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patphilly

@ Dani_man

Yes, actually on your Hanban link, there are also just 1 introductory manual + 5 mock tests for each HSK level. These are the same as I had found in http://chinaeducente...k/hsklevel3.php (right?)

Thanks anyway!

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patphilly

OK, so it seems the only option to get other practice material would be buying books. It's now too late for me to order books from the Chinese amazon, but I guess I could keep it in mind for when I study for the next HSK level.

From the links murrayjames provided, people have been recommending the book 新HSK汉语水平考试,模拟试题集。 published by 北京语言大学出版社. I found it suspicious that it is apparently not sold on American or other foreign Amazon sites: does the book contain any explanation in English, or is that absolutely all in Chinese (as the cover seems to suggest)? Does the book include questions in the very same format as the real test?

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edelweis

you're not saying where you are (hint: fill your profile)

anyway.

http://www.amazon.co...34230955&sr=8-8

Western websites do not often have Chinese text search, so they translate the title.

I have the HSK4 book. It contains 10 simulated tests, with MP3 CD, listening transcript and answers.

As far as I know it's exactly the same format as the real test.

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edelweis

Well then, you can find it on amazon.fr (a bit expensive), amazon.de (more reasonable), and additionally you could order it from the Le Phenix or You Feng bookstores in Paris.

I bought my HSK4 mock-up tests book from You Feng at about 20 euros (although I can't find the book on their website, but they have many more books than advertised on the website, so you can try contacting the store directly)

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patphilly

Thanks everyone,

that's indeed a useful thread. It seems that it was noticed in that thread that the book recommended by edelweiss actually involves more words outside of the official lists: edelweiss, did you notice this problem too now that you are studying level 4 with book?

The user hanyu_xuesheng recommended PUP books (see http://www.chinasprout.com/shop/BLK026) which are supposed to involve ONLY words from the official lists. Did anybody else try those, too?

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milin

I also have tried both the PUP books (mentioned by hanyu_xuesheng) and the BCLU books (recommended by edelweiss).

I'm studying for level 5 at the moment (exam date is 20-5), and as a warming up I did 6 level 4 exams from the BCLU book. Although all the level 4 words are in my training, there are a lot of words in the level 4 exams I don't know, and quite a few of them are from level 5 or even level 6.

Also, like Dani_man says in his review, the sentence-assembling exercise in the writing part is much more difficult than in the official Hanban mock exams (in a Hanban level 5 exam I yesterday scored 8 out of 8, while in the BCLU level 4 exams I hardly get 5 out of 10 correct answers).

Unfortunately I tried the PUP exams last year, and I'm sure (because I registered all my results) that they too are a lot more difficult than the Hanban exams. But I'm not sure anymore if they also contain words that are not in the official lists for that level.

But in the next few weeks I will do a number of level 5 PUP exams, so then I will be able to tell you more.

On one hand it's not too bad to train with exams that are in fact too difficult, because then the real exam will be relatively easy. But it can also undermine your confidence if your results are very low. Last year I passed level 4 with an average 6.8, and with the BCLU exams I now hardly get above 6. While I have been studying very hard all year.

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edelweis

Yes, the HSK4 BLCU (北京语言大学出版社) book that I have does contain some words which are not in the official list.

But then when I took HSK3 in 2010 there was at least one word in the official test which was not in the list either, although easy to guess from characters of words which are in the list (阳镜).

And the first sample test to be released also contained words which are not in the list (the one in the HSK3 file with the grammar list and vocabulary list from chinesetesting.cn, which was the only sample test available to me in 2010).

Is it stated somewhere in official documentation that actual tests contain or are supposed to contain only words from the official list?

I mean, for lower levels it makes sense to keep close to the official list, but for higher levels mixing unknown words would test the candidate's real life skills of guessing and inferring as I understand the old HSK did. (ok this has probably been discussed already, does anyone know in which thread?)

[edit] also, I am not especially "recommending" the BLCU books over other books. It's just that I know for a fact that the BLCU books are available in Europe since I have seen stacks of them in bookstores here in Paris.

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milin

The BCLU books are also available in at least 1 (and I think 2) bookstores in Holland. And I don't regret buying them, because the more practice, the better.

I also agree with you that you don't get very far in real life (reading a newspaper for example) if you just know the words from the HSK lists, and you get stuck the moment you encounter an unknown word. But when there are (too) many unknown words they produce a lot of delay. And I think they already require you to read a large amount of text to pass the exam. Even though I can quite easily pass the reading part of level 4 (an average of about 8 even on the BCLU ones), I can't finish all the questions in time.

But: in my opinion it's not just *some* words that are outside the official lists, I think it's a *huge* number of words. I just checked the first 4 reading questions of the 5th exam of the level 4 book. My training database contains 13500 words and characters. Among those are all words up to and including level 5 (except for about 100 level 5 ones) and about 1000 level 6 words. Nevertheless, in just those 4 questions I came across 10 new words, 3 (!!!) of level 6, 1 of level 5 and 7 outside of any level. And I have difficulty guessing a word like 散发 (san4fa1) or 充实 (chong1shi2). The real number of level 5 and 6 words may even be a lot higher, because I already know a lot of them and in that case I don't know to which level they belong. These are just the ones I have never encountered before.

About the writing part: until now I have done 3 level 5 exams, 1 offical (Hanban) one, and 2 PUP ones. On the Hanban one I scored 8/8 on the sentence building part, on the PUP ones I scored respectively 4/8 and 2/8. In some cases I don't even have a clue what the sentence could be, even though I stare 5 minutes at it. My conclusion, also bases on my preparations for level 4 last year: the Hanban test exams are really much easier than the PUP and the BCLU ones. But still I'm glad with all the test possibilities there are.

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patphilly

haha wow, interesting!

It's definitely very stupid that they sell books to practise exams for a certain level, and don't pay any attention to the official word lists. Of course, a few words here are there which happen to be outside the list are fine, but this seems like they didn't make too much effort building their questions at an appropriate level...

In fact, I am preparing for level 3 and I know all the 600 words perfectly now, I can also write them all. So I find the writing part surprisingly easy (most new characters that need to be written are from levels 1 and 2 it seems). I more and more realize that listening speed is going to be an issue for me. I can also solve very easily all the reading questions, but I don't have enough time to get to the end in the allocated time.

Apart from mock tests, I was wondering how you guys study for the exams? (I mean, those people who live outside of china and don't have a daily exposure to chinese)

Are you just taking lots of easy texts (are there any texts collections adapted for a each HSK level by the way? like short conversations involving as many words from a given level and as few as possible outside the level? I guess I am expecting too much? :P ) and training to read them as fluently as possible? Or are you studying from another book which includes useful grammar? (learning words from a vocabulary list can be tedious after a while... and certainly not the most efficient way to recognize and read sentences...)

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milin

I've now finished 8 level 5 mock exams, 2 official ones, 4 PUP ones, and 2 BLCU ones.

My first conclusion: the official level 5 exams also contain a number of level 6 words, and a number of words which are on none of the HSK lists. But nevertheless I can quite easy grasp the general meaning of the text, which I can't in the PUP and especially BCLU books. So those texts contain a lot more words that don't belong in that level, and the sentences are more difficult. It does seem (just based on 1 official test) that there are a lot more 4-character-expressions (not on any of the lists) in the official exam. These I usually can't understand, but they don't block my understanding of the text to a large degree.

My second conclusion: as I already wrote in my previous post, the writing part of the official exam is very much easier. On both Hanban exams I scored 8/8 questions correct, on both BCLU exams I scored just 2/8, and on the 4 PUP exams I scored 6/8 once, 4/8 once, and 2/8 two times.

My third conclusion: the listening part of the PUP exams is much more difficult than the official and BCLU exams. In the latter ones you get close to 15 seconds time to answer the question, so you have ample time to read the 4 answers. In the PUP exam you just get about 5 seconds, and sometimes the answers are quite long. You can also see this from the length of the recordings: the BCLU audio files last from 29 to 31 minutes, the PUP audio files last from 20 to 24 minutes.

General conclusion: I think the BCLU exams are the most difficult (because of the insane number of higher-level and other unknown words), but the listening part is a little easier than the PUP ones.

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