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HSK and FAQ

What is HSK?

HSK (Hanyu Shuiping Kaoshi) is a standardized international Chinese language proficiency test for non-native Chinese speakers. The new HSK consists of two independent parts: written test and oral test. The written test comprises of six levels from HSK-Level 1 to HSK-Level 6. The oral test is divided into three levels: HSK (Basic), HSK (Elementary-Intermediate), and HSK (Advanced). All HSK certificates are issued by the National Commission of Chinese Proficiency Test, which is under the Ministry of Education of China. For more information, please visit:http://www.chinesetesting.cn/gosign.do?id=1&lid=0# Please note that we do not offer oral test at Emory test center.

When and where are HSK Tests offered?

The Confucius Institute in Atlanta offers HSK Written Tests on Sunday, March 19, 2017 on Emory campus. Please see below for time and locations. For campus map, please click hereModern Languages Building and nearby parking lots are marked on the map. On campus parking is free over weekends.

HSK Level Date and Time Location (Emory)
Level 1 Sunday 3/19 (40 min.) 1:00pm - 1:40pm  Modern Languages 201
Level 2 Sunday 3/19 (55 min.) 1:00pm - 1:55pm Modern Languages 127
Level 3 Sunday 3/19  (90 min.) 1:00pm - 2:30pm Modern Languages 330
Level 4 Sunday 3/19 (105 min.) 9:30am - 11:15am  Modern Languages 127
Level 5 Sunday 3/19 (125 min.) 1:00pm - 3:05pm Modern Languages 128
Level 6 Sunday 3/19 (140 min.) 9:30am - 11:50am 

Modern Languages 330

Registration materials must be received by Monday, February 6, 2017.

What are HSK test scores used for?

Test scores are used by different organizations and groups of people. The scores offer, but not limited to the following:

  • A reference for educational institutions to recruit students, classify students, exempt students from some courses and grant credits;
  • A reference for employers to employ, train and promote employees;
  • A reference for Chinese learners to assess their Chinese proficiency and identify areas for improvement;
  • A reference for Chinese teaching institutions or training organizations to evaluate teaching standards and the effectiveness of curriculum; 
  • A reference for applying for Confucius Institute scholarship.

How do I know which level to take?

Descriptions of the six levels of the exam are provided below. HSK manuals and sample tests are available at http://www.chinesetesting.cn/godownload.do.

For a vocabulary list of different levels of HSK, DOWNLOAD HERE.

  • HSK- Level 1 (Vocabulary: 150)

The HSK (Level I) is intended for students who have studied Chinese for a semester (half an academic year), with 2-3 class hours per week. These students have mastered 150 commonly used words and basic grammar patterns. The exam includes a listening section and a reading section and is 40 minutes in length.

  • HSK- Level 2 (Vocabulary: 300)

The HSK (Level II) is intended for students who have studied Chinese for two semesters (an academic year), with 2-3 class hours per week. These students have mastered 300 commonly used words and related grammar patterns. Examination candidates who reach HSK-Level 2 can communicate simply and directly on daily topics they are familiar with. The exam includes a listening section and a reading section and is 55 minutes in length.

  • HSK- Level 3 (Vocabulary: 600)

The HSK (Level III) is intended for students who have studied Chinese for three semesters (one and a half academic years), with 2-3 class hours per week. These students have mastered 600 commonly used words and related grammar patterns. Examination candidates who reach HSK-Level 3 can complete basic communication tasks in daily life, study and work. If traveling in China, Level 3 can handle most communication tasks they encounter. The exam includes a listening section, a reading section and a writing section and is 90 minutes in length.

  • HSK- Level 4 (Vocabulary: 1200)

The HSK (Level IV) is intended for students who have studied Chinese for three semesters (one and a half academic years), with 2-3 class hours per week. These students have mastered 600 commonly used words and related grammar patterns. Examination candidates who reach HSK-Level 4 can discuss a relatively wide range of topics in Chinese and are able to communicate with native speakers. The exam includes a listening section, a reading section and a writing section and is 105 minutes in length.

  •  HSK- Level 5 (Vocabulary: 2500)

The HSK (Level V) is intended for students who have studied Chinese 2-4 class hours per week for more than two academic years. These students have mastered 2,500 commonly used words and related grammar patterns. Examination candidates who reach HSK-Level 5 can read Chinese newspapers and magazines, appreciate Chinese films and television, and are able to write and deliver a full speech. The exam includes a listening section, a reading section and a writing section and is 120 minutes in length.

  •  HSK- Level 6 (Vocabulary: 5000+)

HSK (Level VI) is intended for students who have mastered 5,000 or more commonly used words. Examination candidates who reach HSK-Level 6 can easily understand what they read and listen and express themselves fluently in written and oral Chinese. The exam includes a listening section, a reading section and a writing section and is 135 minutes in length.

For information on the vocabulary each level contains, please download HSK Vocabulary Sheet here.

How should I prepare for the test?

You can find many resources to help you prepare for the test.

Who will grade the test?

After a test is given, the answer sheets will be sealed and mailed back to Beijing (China) immediately for grading by the HSK Testing Center Headquarter. The Confucius Institute in Atlanta will not be responsible for grading any examinations.

How soon can I find out my scores?

You will be able to access your score online approximately One Month after a test is administered.

How do I check my score and get my certificate?

HSK score online:

Your HSK test score will be available online at http://www.chinesetesting.cn One Month after the test date. Please note that your test registration number (as shown on your Test Admission Card) will be required for accessing your score record online.

HSK Certificate:

HSK certificates will be sent to the Confucius Institute in Atlanta 50 days after the test date. When the Test Center receives the certificates, you will be notified either by email or telephone for a pickup. Your HSK test certificates will be kept at the Confucius Institute in Atlanta for up to 2 years after the test date.

May I retake a same category test?

Yes. If your test score does not meet the passing grade, you can take the same category test again at any HSK test site worldwide. There is no waiting period and no limit of how many times you can take the test. You must reapply in order to re-take the test.

Will my HSK certificate expire?

Your HSK certificate is like a diploma. Once you receive it, it becomes your property and it is valid permanently. However, if you wish to use your HSK scores to apply for admission to a college or university in China, your scores are valid for TWO YEARS ONLY from the date you take the test.

What are the fees for HSK test?

  • Level 1: $20
  • Level 2: $30
  • Level 3: $40
  • Level 4: $50
  • Level 5: $60
  • Level 6: $70

What form of character will be on the test paper:

Simplified characters will be on the test paper. However, you can write in either simplified or traditional characters to answer questions or for the composition.

How do I register?

Step 1:

Complete the 2017 HSK Test Registration Form. You can download the REGISTRATION FORM, or request a copy through email: ling.wang@emory.

Step 2:

Submit the following items:

1. Your completed and signed Registration Form; 

2. Test fees – check or money order payable to “Emory University”

3. Two current passport-size photos with your name on the back

4. A copy of a valid photo ID (driver’s license or passport; if you don't either, you can submit a copy of your student ID)

5. Submit an e-copy of form and mail it to ling.wang@emory.edu.

Hard copy of the application should be mailed to:

Confucius Institute in Atlanta
Modern Languages Building Room 119
532 S. Kilgo Cirlce
Emory University
Atlanta, GA 30322

The mail should arrive at the Confucius Institute in Atlanta on or before February 6, 2017.

Who should I contact if I have any further questions regarding the HSK test?

You may direct your questions to (please copy both):

Ling Wang: ling.wang@emory.edu

Rong Cai: rcai@emory.edu