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BLCU, Beijing Language and Culture University, Housing Info, and more


amandagmu

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Hi all,

i have also jumped on the Beijing bandwagon and looking to do the first few months at diqiucun language academy before heading over to BLCU to do the 6 months programme.

from this thread, i've obtained some quality information and have really put any doubts about the actual place to bed. but i think like most of us here, i'm having a few difficulties with the housing and accommodation in beijing.

i've seen the beijing foreign student acitivities centre (i think ISC now) pop up here and there and just wanted to ask people:

1. how are people getting these 60-70 rmb/night rates? i'm on there website now and have also emailed the people there and can only seem to find 105 rmb/night for a single standard room, even with a guarantee of staying for over 25 weeks (proposed on the site) - am i missing something?

2. i know they've got pictures up on the website but i can never trust those - so, for the people who have stayed there recently (circa 2008/early 2009), is it ACTUALLY like the photos or are the people there taking photos at very misleading angles?? and finally

3. is there a gym or a sports ground nearby the place? i'm abig football fan (soccer?) and have started to pump some iron at the gym and would like to continute my relationship with the two while i'm there

any info about these would be much appreciated! i am PSYCHED about beijing nonetheless and hope to see some of you at Propaganda on a wedneday night!

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I can't comment about BFSAC/ISC, but for that quoted price & length of stay you should really consider getting an apartment instead.

For your other question, BLCU has a soccer field and a commercial gym right on campus. You can easily find other students to play soccer, etc.

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So I'm in dorm 6; some of my friends are in 17. A(nother) quick comparison:

- 17 is a lot prettier and has way more modern-looking with nice sanded wooden furniture and everything. 6 has more ancient-looking black (painted wood and stone) furnishings with a generally older look.. I get the feeling that not so much thought was put into how the rooms in 6 work as a study space. My desk has shelves that aren't spaced widely enough to put books on, and a glass top which is way inconvenient if you have an optical mouse as I do.

- And there is less shelf space in 6. I think there might be more space in general in 17, but I have a single room and my friends are sharing a double, so that's probably an unfair comparison.

- Bigger bathroom in 6, though.

- the beds in 6 are softer than 17. I get a normal mattress which is a bit hard by my standards - theirs are about two inches thick and about as soft as wooden planks.

- 17 is a lot busier; there are more people, and walking in and out I saw plenty of people hanging out in the lobby or studying on the tables just outside. Apparently the walls are pretty thin too and you can hear whatever goes on around the floor. 6 is a lot smaller, more soundproofed, has no lounge/study area (although there are some tables outside nearby at the friendship store) and I can go days without seeing anyone else save the receptionist.

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Guest smurfette

Hello everyone!

I have read all of these messages :) and still, I have questions.

I want to come to BLCU for 6 weeks this summer and want to stay in a dorm.

I would like to stay in a single room with a shower , fridge and an opportunity to have unlimited access to internet. Is that possible?

What dorms have these facilities? Would you advise dorm 17 to me, or maybe 6?

Could anyone tell me how much would a single room cost?

Is it possible to book a room in advance to be sure that I will get one? I'm coming for a short term and don't want to bother looking for an apartment.

Thanks in advance! I really appreciate your help

Sofia

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Hey guys,

a quick question about BLCU's teachers/classes: since the quality of your Chinese class all depends on what kind of teacher you get - might be a good one, a bad one or in between. Would it be safe to assume if you get to the upper (advanced) level that the teachers would surely be professional and therefore "good"? :)

Does anyone know how many students are there in a class on those advanced levels & are those students predominantly Asian, or are there usually lots of westerners as well?

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Would it be safe to assume if you get to the upper (advanced) level that the teachers would surely be professional and therefore "good"?

To be honest, the chances of you getting good teachers are pretty equal throughout. I am in 高下, the highest level class available through the long term program at BLCU, and it has been a bit of a mixed bag. I have been lucky to have had amazing instructors for my Comprehensive Chinese class (it's your core class) for the entire year. The two usual instructors for the Advanced level core class are excellent instructors; however, this semester, they had to get a new teacher to teach the third lower Advanced class, and she isn't very good. (There's usually not very many people in the higher level classes, but there was more than expected this semester.) My oral instructor last semester was amazing, but my oral instructor this semester is awful.

For electives, it's pretty much luck of the draw. I dropped out of the Modern Chinese History elective early this semester because the instructor was pretty fail, but my instructor for Chinese Traditions and Culture is quite awesome. You get two weeks at the beginning of the semester to pick and choose your electives, so take advantage of it.

Does anyone know how many students are there in a class on those advanced levels & are those students predominantly Asian, or are there usually lots of westerners as well?

Class sizes are pretty average. They start a new class if there are 5 students available, and the upper cap is 30 students, though they try to keep the classes at 25 students or less.

Students in the classes are a mixed bag. My class has a lot of Asian students, but there are also quite a few Westerners. My friend in lower Advanced has a lot of Westerners in his class. In my class, there are Indonesians, Thais and Vietnamese as well as Americans, a Swede, a Slovakian and a guy from Turkey. We have one Korean girl and one Japanese girl and three Russians. There's quite a large number of Russians learning Chinese, besides the usual Japanese and Koreans, and there's also a large community of people from the ex-Soviet satellite states like Tajikistan, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan etc. There are also a few African students, but most of them seem to be at the elementary level. I haven't seen one at the advanced level, and I'm not sure if there are any at the intermediate level.

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Yueni, thanks for your input. May I ask which level exactly are you in? E or maybe F? How many students total are there in your class?

Also, are there any regular classes (on advance level) where it's not as packed as other classrooms? Personally, I wouldn't really want more than 15 people in a classroom...

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Yueni, thanks for your input. May I ask which level exactly are you in? E or maybe F? How many students total are there in your class?

Also, are there any regular classes (on advance level) where it's not as packed as other classrooms? Personally, I wouldn't really want more than 15 people in a classroom...

Hi Jon, I think we're both talking about different programmes. The programme that you are probably talking about is through the short term language study college. Mine is through the College of Advanced Studies (or something like that, I'm not sure what the formal name in English is, but in Chinese, it's known colloquially as the 进修学院). My current level is probably equivalent to F in the programme that you're going through.

I'm afraid I don't know as much about that programme. I have friends in that programme, but the highest one there is a C or a D, I believe.

To be absolutely honest about my programme, the third lower advanced class (with the new teacher) is a lot smaller about 15 or so students; however, that class is not as good as the other two classes, because the teacher is better. I personally don't believe that small class sizes mean a good class. It's largely dependent on your classmates and the teacher.

A lot of students don't attend my oral class because the teacher is so awful; there are days when out of 30 students, only 8 show up, and I don't feel like I get anything out of it still. Yet most still turn up for the core class, and there's usually at least 25 or more students in that class, and it's always a good class; on some days, I wish that class ran longer!

I am really lucky in that my classmates are all very advanced in their Chinese. Our teachers have commented that not many students come in with this high a level of Chinese, and to have so many together at the same time (there's about 8-10 of us in my class) in the same class is really rare. It's partly because of this that my class is so dynamic as the teachers really try to cater to your language ability as they teach. If the class as a whole has a lower language ability, then they try to slow the pace or teach more to the important elements in the text; if the class has a higher language ability, then they really introduce a lot of outside material into the classroom as well. It's really up to you to interact with your teachers. I feel that student-teacher interaction is entirely up to you, and I think you'll get more out of your classes if you do so.

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^^ Thank you for your reply, Yueni.

Hm, now I also got a bit confused about these classes though. What is the program that one would get as a 1-semester scholarship student then?

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Oh, and I really need to get the thing about the accommodation clear:

as a 1-semester scholarship student, can you choose a single room at dorms 4, 6 or even Conference Center and pay the difference that your scholarship wouldn't cover? (usually that would make about half of the actual price, or a bit more)

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That is not typically allowed from what I understand. Everyone I know here who is on scholarship who didn't like their accommodations had to pay the full amount to live elsewhere. The only exceptions to this are dorms 7 and 8; I know friends who where allowed to move there and pay the difference.

You definitely can't do that with the Conference center. It's basically a hotel on campus grounds.

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Jason, that's incorrect. I'm a scholarship student, as are some of my friends. I am currently living in Dorm 8, I was in 13 before. I've had friends go from 7 to 4. We are all paying the cost of the dorm MINUS the 30kuai or so that the scholarship takes off for staying in Dorm 1 or 9. This does not apply to the Conference centre, and I don't have any information on whether or not it works for 17, but all of the other dorms that are run by the housing office will remove the 30kuai.

Though it works out to be more like 1/3 of the cost they take off. For Dorm 8, it's originally 90kuai, which goes down to 60 as a scholarship student.

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When I first moved to the dorms at BLCU, I was told that the scholarship was only transferable to 7 & 8. It might have changed since. I know 7 has since been closed down for renovations and all my friends who were in 7 were moved to dorm 4 now.

Dorm 17 is not covered under the scholarship as it was run under a different office. Not sure how up-to-date this is though this info is only 6 months old!

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Yueni, it was also valid for 13 and 12, although those have also since been closed down.

Jon: Whatever the cost of a double room in dorm 1 or 9 is, I think it's roughly 30 kuai will be taken off the price of your current room.

And yeah, things sure seem to change fast around here, so who the heck knows what the rules will be next term.

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  • 4 weeks later...
greenarcher

How long does it take BLCU to send back the acceptance letter / VISA forms?

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  • 4 weeks later...
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