Six Chinese Language Proficiency Test Sessions Held in Southern US States in 2022
In response to the outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic in March 2020, all schools and universities suspended on-campus activities to prevent further spread of the disease, and the Education Division of the Taipei Economic and Culture Office in Houston canceled all TOCFL (Test of Chinese as a Foreign Language) tests throughout the southern US for the past two years.
Since then, vaccines have been developed and businesses and schools have gradually reopened. The Education Division was very happy to finally be able to resume holding TOCFL tests in the first half of 2022. The Education Division worked with institutions to hold four TOCFL test sessions and two CCCC (Children’s Chinese Competency Certification) test sessions at universities and schools in the states of Texas and Missouri. These were Rice University in Houston, Texas, the Mandarin Center of the Universities of St. Thomas and Wenzao Ursuline, at the University of St. Thomas, also in Houston, the Consortium of Texas Chinese Language Institutes, Magellan International School in Austin, Texas, and the St. Louis Chinese Language School in Missouri.
Participants of diverse ethnic backgrounds participated in the TOFCL tests at the different test venues. Younger participants could take the Children’s Chinese Competency Certification tests. “This was the first time the CCCC tests have been conducted at our school, and we have received positive feedback from the teachers and from the students,” said Mandarin teacher Weiwen Fowler of Magellan International School. “The tests focus on sentences, and the students have to come up with a strategy to find the keyword to answer each question. This process helps students to be able to improve their speaking and listening skills. The design evaluates students’ vocabulary comprehension and also allows students to get used to the natural Mandarin dialogue situations. The tests also contain many cute pictures which can help ease students’ stress about taking a test.”
The Education Division has administered the TOCFL tests in a number of southern states in the United States since 2009. Since the launch of the U.S.–Taiwan Education Initiative in 2020, language education cooperation and exchanges between Taiwan and the US have been growing more vigorously than ever, and more and more US students will have opportunities to study Mandarin Chinese with the assistance of Taiwanese teachers and teaching materials. TOCFL and CCCC are both well-established reliable ways to assess learners’ language proficiency.