What is HSK-

HSK is short for,

Hanyu = 汉语 (The Chinese Language)

Shuiping = 水平 (Level/Progress)

Kaoshi = 考试 (Examination)

HSK is a Chinese proficiency test which was launched by HanBan, also known as the Confucius Institute, which works in affiliation with the Chinese Ministry of Education. The purpose of this examination is to test an individual’s level of knowledge of Mandarin, the most common form of the Chinese language. HSK employs reading, writing, and oral examinations to fulfil its purpose. Since, HSK is affiliated with the Government of China, it is a credible and trusted parameter to identify a person’s level of proficiency in the Chinese Language.

HSK assesses the abilities of non-native Chinese individuals in professional, educational, as well as in informal environments. It has six levels; HSK1, HSK2, HSK3, HSK4, HSK5, and HSK6.

A perfect tool to assess yourself when you learn Chinese-

When you learn Mandarin or Chinese or any language, identifying where you stand is most important. HSK levels serve as milestones for the learner to assess their performance. In fact, HSK levels are in compliance with the Chinese Language Proficiency Scales for Speakers of Other Languages (CLPS) and the Common European Framework of Reference for Languages (CEF). HSK levels correspond to them in the following manner;

HSK Vocabulary CLPS CEF
HSK (Level VI) Over 5,000 Level V C2
HSK (Level V) 2500 C1
HSK (Level IV) 1200 Level IV B2
HSK (Level III) 600 Level III B1
HSK (Level II) 300 Level II A2
HSK (Level I) 150 Level I A1

As seen above, it is quite evident that HSK marks the proficiency levels in a very methodical way. Each level has a fixed number of words that the learner memorizes.

HSK Levels-

HSK1 is the most basic and rudimentary level for Mandarin learners. Individuals who pass this level are able to understand and implement simple Chinese words and phrases. They can complete very basic conversations and understand greetings, and questions like ‘how are you?’ and ‘what is your name?’

HSK2 is the second level where test takers who are able to complete this exam can fluently carry out conversations in basic Chinese. They can understand simple Chinese efficiently.

HSK3 exam passers can complete entire conversations in Chinese in a simple and basic way. They can implement Chinese in their academic, professional, as well as daily activities. HSK3 is also considered as the eligibility milestone for many companies and institutions in China and Taiwan.

HSK4 comes at a stage when non native Chinese people who have passed this test can speak fluently with native Chinese people. They can talk on various subjects and diversify their conversations and the core ideas these conversations revolve around. HSK4 passers can create excellent impressions on business partners and carry out sales and operations in China.

HSK5 is the penultimate level of evaluation of Chinese proficiency in individuals. People who have passed the HSK5 exams can read Chinese literature and watch Chinese films. They can deliver speeches in Chinese eloquently and confidently.

HSK6 is the final level of the HSK exams. HSK6 level candidates can easily understand, read, and write the Chinese language. An HSK6 certificate implies that the person is very well versed in Chinese.

Some facts about HSK-

Here are a few facts about HSK;

  • You don’t have to start from HSK1. If you think you already know basic Chinese, you can jump to, for example, HSK3. A Chinese Language teacher can help you evaluate your level. Fill in the form given at the end of this page and an expert will reach out to you and help you evaluate your HSK level. There is no need to take HSK tests in order. Only the highest level of HSK that you have achieved is considered
  • HSK tests can be taken online or on paper. Both have their pros and cons and the preference depends on test takers. HanBan is planning to remove the paper method soon though as it is convenient for them to conduct the examinations online.
  • You can check your results after a month from taking the test. Results are available on the official website of HanBan.
  • The test center will help you with all the processes involved in obtaining your certificate once you have passed the test.
Reach out to us with any queries regarding HSK. Fill the form below and we will help you with the rest-