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Yadang

Efficient Learning Strategy of Chinese Characters Based on Network Approach

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hedwards

It sounds very much like this approach follows the typical fallacy of assuming that high frequency is high utility and if you look at a typical corpus, the high frequency words are typically low meaning words. If you know 95% of the words in a text, chances are really good that it's the last 5% of the words that carry all or most of the meaning. Obviously that assumes that you're learning based upon frequency, but I think that's pretty much inevitable unless you're choosing materials that are heavily skewed towards less common words.

 

I've tried approaches based upon frequency and I have yet to find one that worked as well as advertised. The main reason being that while they do reduce the amount of time, most of the time the words that they want me to study are lower interest words that are hard to get motivated by. And because they're based upon frequency lists, they're also not necessarily getting the words that are necessary to understand any text completely. Except in cases where the text itself was specifically tailored to that particular list.

 

Still, it probably does work for some people, but unless you're especially committed or have a gun to your head to force completion, I'm not sure this approach can really do much about that high burn out rate. A typical person can learn about 4 words a day without any particular effort and at that rate, you'll eventually be able to read and write, but the motivation is usually going to run out well before one can read even a graded reader.

 

That's not to say that I think this research is a waste of time or can't be used in a way that's useful. I just think that trying to use it as-is is probably not going to see the sort of gains that it would were it not for human nature.

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He JianMing

Interesting, I was just reading an article on the BBC about this.

 

I agree with hedwards 100%

 

Also, as character said, "Reading and Writing Chinese: Third Edition" is a good book - though I think the font of the earlier books is much better for beginners.

 

I think the real purpose of this study was to try and create a base for other projects to use to enhance learning efficiency. While the study itself applied directly may not be effective, I can see it being well-used to improve upon other techniques.

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Yadang

 

I'm not sure this approach can really do much about that high burn out rate.

Yeah, that's a good point - if one used this just as a list, I too think the burn out rate would be really high.

 

 

 

I think the real purpose of this study was to try and create a base for other projects to use to enhance learning efficiency. While the study itself applied directly may not be effective, I can see it being well-used to improve upon other techniques.

 

Yes, I completely agree.

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