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Chinese Studies: Language Learning

A resource guide for students learning Chinese as a second or foreign language

YouTube channels

Designed for learners

  • Mandarin Corner: website and YouTube channel with tons of free resources to suit any level, including podcasts. Simplified characters.
  • ChineseClass101: This is a paid resource, but it has many videos of basic Chinese to watch on YouTube for free. It may be especially good for beginners. Simplified characters.
  • 每日中文课 Free to Learn: A great YouTube channel that uses a “natural” approach to learn Mandarin. The videos are completely in Chinese but uses comprehensible input to improve the viewer’s language ability little by little. It's most helpful for intermediate or advanced leaners. You can also find it in podcast form. Simplified characters.
  • Easy Languages/Easy Mandarin: This channel makes easy-to-understand content for foriegners studying Mandarin, with content both from China and Taiwan. The link leads to a playlist with all the videos in the series, but you can also check out their two YouTube channels for other resources. There are practice materials to go with the videos, but they require a subscription. Simplified and traditional characters depending on the specific video.
  • LingLing Mandarin: A YouTube channel that teaches Mandarin through mainly through stories, including traditional stories that can help you learn about Chinese culture. Simplified characters.
  • ShuoshuoChinese 说说中文: A cute and informal YouTube channel that makes entertaining and educational videos for learning Chinese. Simplified characters.
  • Grace Mandarin Chinese: A YouTube channel created by a graduate student in Taiwan. There are several good videos on it about pronunciation and slang. Simplified and traditional characters.


Other recommendations

  • 草彩曦 Hailey: This is more of a fun resource that is an American girl who lives in Taiwan and makes videos with her boyfriend. By watching their videos, you can learn about Taiwanese culture and landmarks. Most of the videos are in Mandarin with subtitles in traditional characters.
  • Off The Great Wall: This YouTube channel is in English, but makes funny videos about Chinese culture and trends. They also discuss Chinese American culture and differences between the East and the West.


Designed for learners

  • Coffee Break Chinese: a podcast that teaches simple Chinese in English. There are only episodes available for beginners.
  • 听故事学中文: a great podcast that uses all Chinese to tell stories, teaching and explaining vocabulary on the way. There are stories for all levels, and you can also use it to familiarize yourself with traditional Chinese stories and legends. It’s free to listen to, but transcripts and other materials require subscription.
  • BreadToast Chinese 面包吐司: This is a fun and entertaining podcast made for Chinese learners where the hosts discuss different topics. Most of the podcasts are completely in Mandarin, but they have a few "spin-off" podcasts in English Transcripts of several episodes are available in simplified characters for free on their website.
    • 双语土司: Bilingual spin-off podcast where one speaker only speaks Mandarin and one only speaks English
    • 南腔北调: Podcast in English about different Chinese dialects (Beijing Mandarin, Sichuanese, etc.)
  • Talk Taiwanese Mandarin with Abby: Another great podcast for Chinese learners, it focuses on Taiwanese Mandarin. It is best for intermediate and advanced students to improve listening comprehension. Traditional characters.


Other recommendations

  • 故事FM: This is a popular podcast in China in which people from a variety of backgrounds tell stories about many topics. They can be a little challenging for foreigners because of the lack of dialogue, but one can find all kinds of episodes based on personal interests.
  • 阿塔男孩的跨旅途: The host Deven talks about his experience as a transgender man and about transgender/LGBT issues in Taiwan and the world. It is good to learn about vocabulary relating to gender identity and sexual orientation.
  • 親愛的漢人: Two indigenous Taiwanese men discuss indigenous issues and culture. It can be difficult to understand because they use a lot of slang and informal language, but all the episodes are very interesting.


Below are some song recommendations for Chinese learners. Most of the songs below have easy-to-follow lyrics, with lyrics in Chinese characters, Pinyin, and/or English translations.