Culture Yard Frequently Asked Questions

Can't find an answer to your question in our FAQs? Email us, we're happy to help!

How do I sign up?

Send us a message! You can apply by filling out this short form.

What platform do you use to teach?

Group classes are held live via Zoom. Private classes may be conducted via Zoom, WeChat Video call, or Skype.

Should I take private classes or a group course?

This is a very common question among people studying Chinese, so we wrote this detailed answer to help you make the choice.

How do I schedule my private 1on1 classes?

You can use our free scheduling software. If you are a new student, create an account (or log in if you have an account already). Select your class format, then select your teacher. You can then choose from the available class times.

If you already have class credit with us, enter your email address in the Coupon Code field. If you are purchasing a new class or package, you can complete payment via Paypal.

Do you offer in-person courses?

Currently, all our Chinese courses are conducted online.

What language is spoken in class?

We teach our courses mainly in Chinese. However, all our Chinese teachers can speak English.

What are your office hours?

We are online from 11:00am-17:00pm Monday-Friday.

Do you offer Chinese courses for students on all levels?

Yes, we offer courses from complete Beginner level to HSK 6 (the highest level for the national standardized Mandarin Chinese proficiency exam).

How does Culture Yard confirm my Chinese level?

Before your first class, you will take an online Chinese level evaluation. Your class level will be based on your test results.

Why are conversational courses more expensive than HSK courses?

In conversational classes, group sizes are smaller and you have more time to practice speaking and ask questions during class.

Do I get a certificate/diploma after my course?

If you would like a Certificate of Completion, you may request one at the end of your course. The certificate will show your level of Chinese and the dates and hours for which you have studied.

What teaching method does Culture Yard use?

In our HSK classes, teachers use in-house designed materials to take you through the vocabulary and grammar you need to pass the HSK exam. The courses follow the HSK 标准教程 series.

In our conversational classes, students learn through a communicative method of teaching. This means that classroom time is focused on using key language skills, improving tones, and character recognition. Classroom activities are structured so students can communicate in real-life scenarios as soon as possible.

Private students can request to take a test every 30 hours to check their progress.

What teaching materials does Culture Yard use?

Culture Yard designs our own curriculum supported by PPTs created by our senior teachers.

In addition, group courses follow the HSK Standard Course books from HSK levels 1-6.

Private courses at the Beginner 1 through Pre-Intermediate 2 levels follow the Experiencing Chinese course book series, which focuses on the language you need for practical, real-life situations. Private courses at the HSK 4, HSK 5 and HSK 6 courses follow the HSK Standard Course books. Private students at HSK levels 1-3 may also request to follow the HSK curriculum.

We can provide the PDF version of the textbooks used. Alternatively, students may purchase a hard-copy of their textbook from an online retailer.

Will Culture Yard prepare me for any official exams?

Yes! Our HSK prep courses prepare you to take the HSK exam. We also offer mock exams at the end of each HSK course.

How do I register for the HSK?

You’re in luck! We have this comprehensive guide that will help you register for the exam. If you need assistance, we are happy to help.

Do you offer discounted prices and promotions?

Yes! We offer referral discounts -- refer a friend to study with us and you BOTH get a 100¥ off your next course.

Follow us on WeChat or Facebook to see promotion announcements. Find us on Facebook or scan the QR code below to connect with us on WeChat:

QR code

What happens if I miss a group class?

Not to worry! The teacher records each lesson and can send you the recording after the class. If you watch the recording and want to go over the material with a teacher, you can book a private catch-up lesson.

What is your cancellation policy?

If you need to cancel or reschedule a private lesson, let us know 24 hours before the class time.

Can I try a class?

Yes! If you want to see what our teaching style is like, you can watch a recording of some of our previous classes on YouTube. You can also join our weekly free topic-based group class on Zoom--ask us about our Free Classes WeChat group.

In addition, if you want to try a private lesson, you can arrange a free 20-minute trial class by contacting our office.

How many students are in a class?

Group courses are between 3-6 people.

Is there homework?

Yes! To get the most out of classes, we recommend spending at least one hour doing homework and reviewing for every hour of class time.

What payment methods do you accept?

We accept WeChat Pay, Alipay, PayPal, and international bank transfer.

Are there classes on my time zone?

We offer classes on different schedules to accommodate as many time zones as possible. Classes are scheduled according to China Standard Time (UTC +8).

Who will my teacher be?

The average Culture Yard teacher has over six years of experience teaching Chinese to foreigners. All of our teachers are native Chinese speakers. Culture Yard is not a tutoring service—we are a school and all of our teachers are directly employed by us.

Who will my classmates be?

Culture Yard students come from over 20 different countries worldwide. Our students come from all walks of life—we’ve taught college students, working professionals, and retirees! Our students have different motivations for studying Chinese, but what ties everyone together is that they are serious students passionate about learning Chinese!

When will my course start?

Beginner and intermediate-level group courses open regularly on a rolling basis with a minimum of three people. Advanced-level group courses open by request with a minimum of three people.