No prerequisites are necessary to take this course; it is an introductory course to beginning Chinese.
By the end of this course, students will
The course consists of 16 lessons, a mid-course cumulative review, and a final. Lessons include speaking, writing, and Speedback assignments. Every lesson begins with a list of expected learning outcomes and the specific assignments for that lesson.
This course also includes an online course orientation video. You must complete the orientation before continuing in the course. More information is available on the Course Orientation page.
There is a course discussion board at the end of the course, as well as a course wiki. The discussion board is designed for students to connect, discuss course-related matters, and share ideas with each other. The wiki is designed for the instructor to post information that may provide enrichment or relevant information for the course to the students.
In order for the Flash games to perform properly, and for the pages to display correctly, you must have the most current version of either Firefox or Chrome, and the most current Flash player installed. If some of the games don't seem to work quite right, or you can't see all of the options, try downloading a newer version of the Flash player to fix the problem. The course functions best in Firefox or Chrome. If you are using Internet Explorer, please be sure that you have the most current version of the browser. If you have trouble playing audio files in Internet Explorer, you may wish to associate your audio (mp3) files with the Quicktime player. If you have trouble doing this, contact technical support at 1-877-897-8085 or email@example.com for assistance.
There are Self Check “quizzes” in each lesson intended to help you review the material covered in that lesson. Self Checks are designed to be taken over and over as many times as you wish, to help you gain greater mastery of the concepts or skills being tested. If you find that you do not know or are not certain about an answer, go back to the lesson material and reread the section pertaining to that question. If you don’t like your grade on a given Self Check, retake it until you are satisfied with the grade. Your completion of these Self Checks counts toward the participation portion of your final grade; your scores will not count toward or against your course grade.
MyChineseLab, an online resource that accompanies this course, also provides activities and resources to help you practice and refine your growing skills in Chinese. Unless part of a lesson assignment, MyChineseLab activities are optional and do not count toward your grade (see Extra Practice, below).
There are 13 Speedback assignments throughout the course. These assignments are submitted electronically, with the grade immediately revealed. Incorrect answers will be noted, and an explanation of why the student’s answer was incorrect will be included. Questions will be taken from the textbook and the readings. Speedbacks account for 20 percent of your final grade.
You will be required to complete 16 writing assignments paced throughout the course. These should be submitted electronically in the course and will be graded by the instructor or TA. Grading will be based on provided rubrics associated with each assignment. Graded assignments will be returned with comments. These assignments count toward 10 percent of your final grade. All writing assignments should be written in traditional Chinese characters.
A required speaking appointment is part of every lesson, for a total of 16 appointments. Speaking appointments are like mini oral exams, where students present a prepared oral assignment to the TA and receive feedback at the end of the presentation. A grade will be posted within 24 hours of the appointment. Your lowest score from all your appointments can be dropped (except for the final exam speaking appointment). Speaking appointments consist of 20 percent of the final grade.
Conversation Cafés are live online conversation practice sessions moderated by a TA or the instructor to model higher level speaking skills, answer questions, and help with pronunciation. Students should use the Café to find a partner with whom to complete collaborative assignments, as well as to practice for Speaking Assignments. It is required to attend the Café at least once per lesson. You are given full points if you attend once per lesson and zero points if you do not. These points are included in the rubric for your speaking appointment grade.
This course contains three Cumulative Reviews, one of which is the Mid-Course Cumulative Review discussed below. The other two are less extensive and include regular self checks, conversation cafe appointments, writing assignments, and speaking assignments. In addition to these typical assignments these two reviews also include practice assignments that are TA graded for your feedback only and do not contribute to your final grade.
The Mid-Course Cumulative Review (Cumulative Review 2) will consist of two parts: first, a mid-course speaking appointment and second, an online exam. The exam will be comprehensive, dealing with material presented throughout the entire course. This speaking appointment is not a traditional speaking appointment; therefore, you can not drop this score. The Mid-Course Cumulative Review accounts for 10 percent of your final grade.
There are activities and drills in MyChineseLab online, which you can use for extra practice. These are optional and will not impact your grade, but they can help you master the skills and knowledge required to succeed in this course. I strongly recommend you take advantage of these opportunities for extra practice! Practice is one of the most crucial keys to mastering the language.
The final exam will consist of three parts: first, your final speaking appointment; second, a multiple choice bubble-sheet portion; and third, a written segment. The exam will be comprehensive, dealing with material presented throughout the entire course. The final exam speaking appointment is not a traditional speaking appointment; therefore, you can not drop this score. The final exam, all portions combined, accounts for 20 percent of your final grade. You must pass each portion of the exam with a minimum of 60% to pass the course. Due to the nature of this course's learning outcomes, the exams are only available in a paper format. Please plan for shipping time.
Your final course grade will be determined as detailed below
|Assignments and Exams||Percent of Grade|
|Participation (Self Checks and MyChineseLab)||20%|
|16 Speaking Appointments and Café attendance||20%|
|13 Speedback Assignments||20%|
|15 Writing Assignments||10%|
|Mid-Course Review (written and speaking portions)||10%|
|Final Exam (written and speaking portions)||20%|
|E (fail)||59% or below*|
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BYU is committed to providing a working and learning atmosphere which reasonably accommodates persons with disabilities who are otherwise qualified to participate in BYU's programs and activities. In this spirit, BYU Independent Study aspires to improve web accessibility for users. While not required by law, the Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG) 2.0 Levels A and AA provide a wide range of helpful recommendations to make Web content more accessible. BYU Independent Study strives to apply WCAG 2.0 recommendations where feasible, but may deviate from any recommendations that would result in an undue hardship to BYU Independent Study or alterations to program and course content and objectives. If you have questions about accessibility, or if you need to report problems with any accessibility features please see our Accessibilities and Accommodations Web Page.
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13 Speedback assignments, 15 written assignments, 16 speaking appointment assignments (lowest score dropped), and 1 mid-course cumulative review (speaking and writing); none may be resubmitted. 17 Self Check activities (optional & counted in an overall participation grade), unlimited retakes.
1 proctored, instructor-graded exam, may not retake, must pass in order to pass the course.
Please use the help menu in this course to contact Independent Study or your instructor. You can find a list of free tutors available to BYU Independent Study students on the Free Tutoring Services website.
Note: The Harold B. Lee Library website provides a number of online resources and librarians are available via phone, chat, and email to answer questions about library-related issues.
The course has a (virtual) Conversation Café, open 20 hours per week where students may seek assistance. To access the café, click here and enter as a guest. The course has a TA, who can be reached at this email: email@example.com.
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Department of Independent Study
Division of Continuing Education
Brigham Young University
Provo, Utah 84602