Integrated Chinese Level 1 Part 1 Workbook: Simplified Characters (English and Chinese Edition) (Chinese) 3rd Edition
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I recently decided to learn Mandarin but I work full-time and my schedule isn't flexible enough where I would be able to take night courses, so I set out to teach myself (with the help of my girlfriend, a native speaker). I looked up several books on Amazon and cross referenced them to local universities to see which were "tried and true" for college level learning. The Integrated Chinese series appeared to be widely used so I purchased the level 1 part 1 textbook and workbook.
There are 10 chapters and each chapter is broken down into two sub-chapters that are identical in structure. Each sub-chapter begins with a dialogue that introduces that new words and grammar rules. Next you are presented with a vocabulary list of new words which generally will consist of 10-20 new words. After the vocab list comes the new grammar rules followed by practice exercises. Each chapter has a theme such as hobbies, traveling, family, etc.
The textbook is easy to follow and the grammar rules are explained in plain English. Level 1 Part 1 is what I would expect from 1 semester of college level language studies. If you're teaching yourself, you'll need someone to help you with your pronunciation. They offer language CDs separately so you can listen to the dialogues, but I didn't bother purchasing them so I'm unable to comment on them. I did purchase the workbook but haven't used it at all because the practice sections in the textbook have been sufficient. Overall I would recommend this book to someone who is motivated to learn Mandarin and at a pace comparable to a college level course.
I would have been even happier if the textbook, workbook and character workbook became just one book instead of three. I found it inconvenient to carry three books to class every day.
Only way to obtain the answer key is to contact Cheng & Tsui.
However, they won't give you the passcode unless you are affiliated with a learning institution.
They told me that they can't give me the answer key due to security reasons.
[How can anyone sell a workbook without providing an answer key???]
I was wrong.
The reviews include reviews for the textbook which caused the confusion. I wish the seller would make more efforts to keep reviews for the two different products separated.
The mix of reviews led me to buy a product I would not have bought otherwise.
While it is not necessarily wrong to sell a workbook that completely depends on other products, that information needs to be clear in the description - especially when the reviews cover multiple products.
Top international reviews
Delivery took a couple of days from France to Belgium.
The material itself is outstanding! I have been studying languages for years and this some of the best learning material I have ever seen.