Shida Final Exam Format


For the last four semesters, the Mandarin Training Center at Shida has been administering standardized testing at the end of each semester in order to ensure proper placement of students each new semester.

On the plus side, they seem to be getting better at having tests that reflect what is actually taught in class.

The exam itself follows the following format (the one I took recently covered Book 2 chapters 5-12, other versions are similar):

Part I – Listening Comprehension (put on your goofy headsets and let the fun begin):

  • Section 1 (10 questions) – multiple choice answers as to how best complete each dialog, the dialog is spoken twice and the answer choices are both spoken and listed in the test booklet
  • Section 2 (6 questions) – answering questions based on a short conversation, conversation and questions are spoken, answer choices are spoken and listed in the test booklet
  • Section 3 (4 questions) – in this section the recording is longer and there are two questions for each recording, as before answer choices are spoken and listed in the test booklet

Part II Speaking

  • Section 1 – Reading – students record themselves reading a short paragraph, this level test differs from the previous ones in that the lower level tests included both Zhuyin Fuhao and Roman Pinyin for this section
  • Section 2 (5 questions) – answering questions based on a picture

Part III – Writing

  • Section 1 (10 questions) multiple choice/fill in the blank, what word best completes the sentence
  • Section 2 (10 questions) -multiple choice/selecting the best meaning of each sentence
  • Section 3 (3 questions) – answering questions based on a short article, previous exams did not have this, instead they had short sentences where students had to fill in the blank with the Chinese characters for the Zhuyin Fuhao and Roman Pinyin that was provided
  • Section 4 (5 questions) – in each question, the first line of a dialog is given, students have to write out the response using the supplied grammar pattern

I haven’t gotten my results back, however it can’t be much worst than the previous exam where when I was listening to the recording for the first section I suddenly heard the zoom of a camera lens and looked up to see an instructor a couple feet from my face taking pictures of me struggling with my exam. I think I completely missed the first four questions because of that distraction. Luckily my instructor was sympathetic of my situation when I told her and didn’t count the first four questions against my final score.

7 thoughts on “Shida Final Exam Format

  1. Hey, that’s good to know. I know a lot of people who are happy to see this. I think the last language exam I took was German in college, and that wasn’t really fair, since I am fluent in German.

  2. Hey Todd

    I come to NTNU MTC in March and am very nervouse and new to taipei is there any advise you can give to me?
    Is learning hard in the NTNU?

    Many thanks


  3. Steve – your experience at Shida pretty much hinges on the teacher you get. There is about a week of classes followed by a week in which you are allowed to switch classes. If the teacher you are placed with is sending you weird vibes switch out.

  4. Yeah i guess getting the right teacher for you is a posative when wanting to get the best of the subject you are studying.
    There are so many negative comments about learning mandarin in taipei, that is what is putting me off.
    By the way do you have any advise on apartments you can throw my way.

    Many thanks


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