Mandarin is the standard form of Chinese. It is based on the Northern dialect. “Standard Chinese” is called, pu3tong1 hua4, the common language, in the PRC, while it is called guo2yu3, the national language, in Taiwan. Chinese mandarin is one of only six official languages of the United Nations, Chinese is spoken not only in China, Taiwan, and Singapore, but also throughout Southeast Asia, North America, Europe, and anywhere large Chinese communities congregate. In 2010, Chinese was named one of the languages considered critical to U.S. national security by the U.S. Department of Education.

Unlike most languages, Chinese is tonal. It also has a unique logographic writing system that provides for easy visual comprehension. Knowledge of the written language opens the culture of one of the world’s oldest civilizations. Beyond the Chinese language, traditional Chinese culture—from Confucianism and Taoism to martial arts and Chinese cuisine—has had an enormous influence on the nations of East and Southeast Asia, most notably in Japan, Korea, and Vietnam.

Available Chinese Courses

Career Opportunities

  • Working with international businesses or NGOs which require American-trained professionals to oversee emerging market growth
  • Conducting foreign business with the Chinese market
  • Employment with the American government such as in foreign service, security analysis, or interpretation
  • Becoming a private professional translator and/or interpreter
  • Engaging in the travel and tourism industry
  • Teaching English in China while perfecting Chinese language skills
  • Representing American companies who wish to break into China in the coming years
  • Furthering international relations between the United States and China