Getting Started

January 11, 2011, 05:51 AM posted in General Discussion

I notice that are a lot of newbie lessons.  How does one decide in which order to listen to the lessons?  Is there a recommended order to the classes or shoudl they be used in numerical order?


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January 11, 2011, 07:02 AM

Not that this answers your question, but there's a guy at Symantec with your username.

All Chinesepod lessons can be used at anytime.  There is no real requirement to listen to one newbie over another, although people tend to do the hello, goodbye type of thing first.  On the other hand, if you were looking for specific guidance, there's not too much on that.  There are plenty of sets for newbies and others, so maybe what you can do is find a topic that interests you as a newbie and dig in.  Just use the search bar o the site to find a lesson topic you like at your level.  Good luck.

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I'm that guy. I work at Symantec in Mountain VIew, CA.

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Well, welcome! As a guy working in IT as well, I think you might find the the lesson in the link below interesting. I know you've asked about newbie level lessons, but once you feel you're up to the challenge of intermediate, here's a lesson (among others) that you might enjoy.

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January 11, 2011, 07:34 AM

Hi, Mark

There are indeed rather a lot of Newbie lessons! The good news is that you don't need to study all 300+ to progress up to the Elementary level.

Below is our recommended number of lessons that need to be studied by the average learner before they are ready to move on to the next level:

Newbie – 50 lessons

Elementary – 80 lessons

Intermediate – 120 lessons

Upper Intermediate – 160 lessons

Advanced – 120 lessons

Advanced Media – 80 lessons

As you'll probably have noticed, ChinesePod lessons are modular and self-contained. This means that lessons at the Newbie level, for example, cover essential vocabulary and sentence structures for the beginner level, plus or minus vocab for specific situations.

This affords you flexibility to choose lessons that are of most interest and relevance to you, secure in the knowledge that you'll cover all the "Newbie" level language you need over the course of ~50 Newbie lessons, whichever 50 you choose. (Our philosophy is that if you are interested and engaged in the topic, you'll most likely want to continue studying!)

In terms of the order you study, I would suggest you work through the Newbie lesson sets first. You should also check out the Introductory lessons that should be automatically placed in your dashboard (personalised homepage).

Alternatively, if choosing your own lessons feels like quite an overwhelming task, you might like to try our 3-month Newbie Course, which provides a highly-structured path through ChinesePod's lesson content, guided by regular calls with a ChinesePod teacher.

I hope this helps. Please let us know if you have any questions. We can be reached by email here:

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January 11, 2011, 07:59 AM

Hi Mark! Welcome to CPod!

Suxiaoya just said most of what I was going to say. :)

I would recommend not going directly in numerical order because the newer lessons are better than the older ones. And they don't build off of each other, so don't worry about that. I'd personally start with the more recent, choose some from sets people have made, and also skim through the lessons and pick some that sound interesting.

If you have no background in Chinese, I'd also recommend listening to the lessons on tones and pronunciation.

Good luck! I started as a Newbie over 2 years ago and am up to Intermediate now. When I started, I basically just followed along with the new lessons as they came out and added in older lessons on topics that sounded interesting. Hopefully you'll have a lot of fun. :)

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January 11, 2011, 09:05 AM

Suxiaoya's just about said it all. I just wanted to add that we have a 4-episode show about using ChinesePod, called How to Use ChinesePod.

A helpful episode might be the first one, "Learning About Levels."