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MA Teaching Chinese as a Foreign Language (TCFL)

Course Description

About the course

We will teach you the practical skills you need to be able to teach Chinese as a foreign language. You will learn how to plan your lessons, select teaching materials and manage a classroom. We also teach the theory. You’ll learn about different methodologies, Chinese linguistics and the science of how people acquire a second language.

Your career

Our graduates hold influential positions in business, government, the arts and academia. Some of them are journalists, television producers, interpreters and translators. Others are city brokers and analysts. They work for organisations such as the BBC World Service, BNP Paribas, British Council, British Museum, Deloitte, HarperCollins, Jaguar Land Rover, Lloyds Banking Group, Nintendo, Siemens, Sony, Toyota and the World Food Programme.

Our expertise

We are one of Europe’s leading centres for the study of China, Japan and Korea. We have links with partner universities in East Asia that support our dynamic research culture. Our academics bring theories, methods and findings from their research to their teaching.

All four of our interdisciplinary research clusters inform what we teach. They are: East Asian Business Environment; East Asian Text and Culture; Human Movement and Development in East Asia; Power, Cooperation and Competition in East Asia.

The Sheffield Confucius Institute, which was named Global Confucius Institute of the year in 2015, explores Chinese language and culture. The Institute offers many opportunities for students to get involved in its activities which will help enhance their learning and deepen their cultural understanding of China.

Develop your skills

You’ll learn how to research and analyse, manage projects, write reports and give effective presentations. You will also have the opportunity to take language modules in Chinese, Japanese or Korean if you wish. Your in-depth knowledge of East Asian countries and your understanding of the region will give you an edge in the careers market.

Specialist resources

Our postgrads have their own study space and IT facilities at the Sir Sze-yuen Chung Resource Centre. The University’s libraries have an extensive selection of texts and online resources in Chinese, Japanese and Korean.


You can study a shorter course for a Postgraduate Certificate (four months, 60 credits) or Postgraduate Diploma (nine months, 120 credits). You’ll need 180 credits to get a Masters degree, including 60 credits from your extended project.


Choose from a range of modules which may include: Mandarin Chinese and Universal Grammar; Mandarin Chinese and Second Language Acquisition; Reflections on Practice in Learning and Teaching; Practical Chinese Translation: Intercultural Communications.

Teaching and assessment

There are lectures and small-group seminars. You’re assessed on your essays, exams, presentations and a dissertation.

Visit the MA Teaching Chinese as a Foreign Language (TCFL) page on the University of Sheffield website for more details!

Entry Requirements

You’ll need a good first degree in any subject plus a high level of competence in English and Chinese. Chinese language requirements: if Chinese is not your first language, you need a high 2:1 in Chinese Studies (ideally with four years of intensive language study including a year abroad), HSK level 5 (Hanban format) or level 8 (BLCU format), or equivalent. English language requirements: overall IELTS grade of 6.5 with a minimum of 5.5 in Reading, 6.5 in Writing, 5.5 in Listening and 5.5 in Speaking, or equivalent.

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