10 Common Beginner Mistakes In Chinese Part 1

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Ling JIANG中文
2018年5月24日
36
2 分钟

1. 学 vs 学习 (xué / xuéxí)

Both words mean ‘to study’ or ‘to learn’, whereas 学习 can be used both transitively and intransitively, 学 in normally reserved for transitive use.
e.g.
我学(习)汉语,她学(习)法语。Wǒ xué(xí) hànyǔ, tā xué(xí)fǎyǔ. I study Chinese, she studies French. 我学习,他不学习。Wǒ xuéxí, tā bù xuéxí. I learn, he doesn’t learn.
In the second sentence, the word 习 cannot be omitted.

2. 认识 vs 知道 (rènshi / zhīdào)

认识(rènshi): to know (be familiar with) 知道(zhīdào): to know (facts)

Compare:
你知道乔治 克鲁尼(George Clooney)吗?Nǐ zhīdào George Clooney ma? Do you know George Clooney? 是的,我知道他。Shìde, wǒ zhīdào tā. Yes, I know him.
▲Ling: you know him because of his films, ads, or other media.
你认识乔治 克鲁尼(George Clooney)吗?Nǐ rènshi George Clooney ma? Do you know George Clooney?
▲Ling: although the English translation is the same as the ‘知道’ sentence, this sentence comprises another meaning: are you familiar with him? In other words, are you a friend of him? Do you know well his personalities? etc.
我知道George Clooney,但是我不认识他。Wǒ zhīdào George Clooney, dànshì wǒ bú rènshi tā. I know George Clooney, but I am not familiar with him.

Therefore, 认识(rènshi) can be understood as a deeper or better knowing than 知道(zhīdào).

Let’s see another example:
你认识她吗?Nǐ rènshi tā ma?  Do you know her? 不认识,但我听说过她。Bú rènshi, dàn wǒ tīngshuō guò tā. No, but I’ve heard about her.
Set phrases:
很高兴认识你!Hěn gāoxìng rènshi nǐ! Nice to meet you! 你是在哪里认识她的?Nǐ shì zài nǎlǐ rènshi tā de? Where did you get to know her?

3.  vs 贵姓 (xìng / guìxìng)

‘姓’(xìng) and ‘贵姓‘(guìxìng) both mean ‘Surname’, the difference is: ‘贵姓'(guìxìng) is formal, ‘姓'(xìng) is less formal. ‘贵'(guì) is a courteous word used here to show the respect. ‘贵姓’(guìxìng) can only be used in the ‘您贵姓?’ (guìxìng) sentence. However, ‘姓'(xìng) has other usages. When you reply the question ‘您贵姓?’(nín guìxìng),remember to drop the honorific ‘贵’(guì).
The most common mistake:
  • Wrong: 你贵姓什么? Nǐ guìxìng shénme?
  • Correct: 你姓什么?Nǐ xìng shénme?
Other proper ways of asking someone’s surname politely in Chinese is ‘您姓什么?’(nín xìng shénme?). In spoken language, you may also hear people sometimes saying ‘怎么称呼您?’(zěnme chēnhu nín?)or ‘您怎么称呼?’(nín zěnme chēnhu?), which literally means ‘How (do I) address you?’. Either of them is correct.


4. 学院 vs 学校 vs 大学 vs (xuéyuàn / xuéxiào / dàxué / xì)

学院(xuéyuàn): institute, college
学校(xuéxiào):school
大学(dàxué):university 
系(xì): department, faculty 
Normally, in China, a ‘大学'(dàxué) has many ‘学院’(xuéyuàn), a ‘学院'(xuéyuàn) includes different ‘系'(xì),  ‘系'(xì) is also major. Sometimes, ‘学院'(xuéyuàn) can also be a university by itself, for example, Business College (商学院shāng xuéyuàn).


5. vs 多少 (jǐ / duōshǎo)

Both of these can be used to mean “how many” or “how much”. Whereas ‘几'(jǐ) should be used with a measure word, ‘多少'(duōshǎo) can be used either with or without a measure word for the noun it modifies.
你有几本词典? Nǐ yǒu jǐ běn cídiǎn?
How many dictionaries do you have? 
你有多少 (本 )词典?  Nǐ yǒu duōshǎo (běn)cídiǎn?
How many dictionaries do you have?
The measure word ‘本'(běn) is a must for the first sentence, but only optional in the second.
Also, when ‘几'(jǐ) is used, the expected answer is usually under 10, whereas ‘多少'(duōshǎo) can be used whether one expects a large or small answer.
你们大学有多少学生?Nǐmen dàxué yǒu duōshǎo xuésheng? How many students are there at your university? 你家有几个人?Nǐ jiaā yǒu jǐ gè rén? How many people are there in your family?
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Hello, I'm Ling, a native Chinese speaker. I can speak both French and English. Now, I'm working as a full-time online teacher on Verbling. I have my own website ( https://bilingoal.com/). My goals are to help you improve your pronunciation, speaking, and also let you get ready for HSK exams ( HSK1-4 ). Apart from this, I'm also working as a part-time Mandarin speaking tutor at Easy Chinese which is located in Guangzhou, China. I have experiences teaching both adults and children, especially beginners. I'm patient, responsible and optimist. I love the students who question me a lot during the lessons, and I love your mistakes! IIf you just started this language or want to improve your skills, don't hesitate to contact or to book a trial lesson with me, I will be happy to be your teacher! ▲ Textbook ▲ The textbooks: Beginner Integrated Course: "New Practical Chinese Reader" Level1 is available both in English/French; "New Practical Chinese Reader" Level2 (only English) For hobby/travel: "Experiencing Chinese - Living in China" available both in English / French "Experiencing Chinese - Travelling in China" available both in English / French Speaking: "Developing Chinese-Elementary Speaking Course" A2 (English) "Developing Chinese-Intermediate Speaking Course" B1(English) "Developing Chinese-Intermediate Speaking Course" B2 (English) HSK Standard Course 1-5 *Other textbooks, please specify. ▲ Please note ▲ *If you want to use your own books, please make sure to send me the PDF before class. *If you are beginner level or upper beginner level, I suggest you do the lesson with a book. * The dialogues based on the textbook can be developed to the one more close to the real life. *In my class, you need to take notes, please prepare a notebook and a pen, or print out the whole book if you'd like to. :) ▲ Package ▲ *For absolute beginners: Learning Pinyin is the first step to learning Chinese, therefore Pinyin Package ( Chinese Introductory course - Pinyin) is specially designed for you, this package is divided into 10 sessions. In the first session, I am going to introduce you the language and how to learn Pinyin (Chinese phonetic alphabets) efficiently, easily. In each session, we will learn several Chinese alphabets (finals & initials), I take you to do pronunciation practice ( tone changes, sound discrimination etc). In the meantime, you will be asked to master 1 or 2 Chinese characters for each lesson if you'd like to. I can also show you how to write the characters properly (stroke orders, radicals). If necessary, you will be given some homework. Any questions please let me know.❤️
Flag
中文
globe
中国
time
1 149
中文
母语
,
法语
C1
,
英语
C1
,
韩语
A1
,
日语
A1
Hello, I'm Ling, a native Chinese speaker. I can speak both French and English. Now, I'm working as a full-time online teacher on Verbling. I have my own website ( https://bilingoal.com/). My goals are to help you improve your pronunciation, speaking, and also let you get ready for HSK exams ( HSK1-4 ). Apart from this, I'm also working as a part-time Mandarin speaking tutor at Easy Chinese which is located in Guangzhou, China. I have experiences teaching both adults and children, especially beginners. I'm patient, responsible and optimist. I love the students who question me a lot during the lessons, and I love your mistakes! IIf you just started this language or want to improve your skills, don't hesitate to contact or to book a trial lesson with me, I will be happy to be your teacher! ▲ Textbook ▲ The textbooks: Beginner Integrated Course: "New Practical Chinese Reader" Level1 is available both in English/French; "New Practical Chinese Reader" Level2 (only English) For hobby/travel: "Experiencing Chinese - Living in China" available both in English / French "Experiencing Chinese - Travelling in China" available both in English / French Speaking: "Developing Chinese-Elementary Speaking Course" A2 (English) "Developing Chinese-Intermediate Speaking Course" B1(English) "Developing Chinese-Intermediate Speaking Course" B2 (English) HSK Standard Course 1-5 *Other textbooks, please specify. ▲ Please note ▲ *If you want to use your own books, please make sure to send me the PDF before class. *If you are beginner level or upper beginner level, I suggest you do the lesson with a book. * The dialogues based on the textbook can be developed to the one more close to the real life. *In my class, you need to take notes, please prepare a notebook and a pen, or print out the whole book if you'd like to. :) ▲ Package ▲ *For absolute beginners: Learning Pinyin is the first step to learning Chinese, therefore Pinyin Package ( Chinese Introductory course - Pinyin) is specially designed for you, this package is divided into 10 sessions. In the first session, I am going to introduce you the language and how to learn Pinyin (Chinese phonetic alphabets) efficiently, easily. In each session, we will learn several Chinese alphabets (finals & initials), I take you to do pronunciation practice ( tone changes, sound discrimination etc). In the meantime, you will be asked to master 1 or 2 Chinese characters for each lesson if you'd like to. I can also show you how to write the characters properly (stroke orders, radicals). If necessary, you will be given some homework. Any questions please let me know.❤️

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