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China's Hanyu Shuiping Kaoshi, known as HSK or the Chinese Proficiency Test is a standardized test at the state level designed and developed by the HSK Center of Beijing Language and Culture University to assess the Chinese proficiency of non-native speakers (foreigners, overseas Chinese and students of Chinese national minorities). HSK consists of the basic Chinese proficiency test (HSK Basic), the elementary and intermediate Chinese proficiency test (HSK Elementary-Intermediate) and the advanced Chinese proficiency test (HSK Advanced). HSK is held regularly in China and other countries each year. Certificates of HSK will be issued to those who have secured the required scores.
The Chinese Ministry of Education has established China National Committee for Chinese Proficiency Test (HSK)(CNCCPT). The Committee is the supervisor of HSK and the issuer of the Chinese proficiency certificates. CNCCPT has an office called Office of China National Committee for Chinese Proficiency Test (HSK), which takes care of the HSK affairs together with the HSK Center of BLCU.
1. About Applicants of HSK
HSK (Basic) applies to those learners with the basic Chinese proficiencies, namely, those who have taken 100 to 800 hours of regular modern Chinese learning (including those with the equivalent learning experiences). HSK (Elementary-Intermediate) is for those who are at the elementary and intermediate level in Chinese proficiency, i.e. those who have taken 400-2000 regular hours of modern Chinese courses (including those whose proficiency in Chinese is similar to that standard). The HSK (Advanced) is designed to measure the Chinese proficiency of those who are proficient in Chinese, i.e. who have taken 3000 regular hours or more modern Chinese learning (including those whose proficiency in Chinese is similar to that standard).
2. The functions of HSK Certificates
(1) to certify that the holder has acquired the required Chinese Proficiency to enter a college or university as an undergraduate or graduate student.
(2) to certify that the holder can be exempt from taking the Chinese language course depending on the level of certification.
(3) as a basis for the employers to evaluate the Chinese proficiency of the job applicants.
3. HSK organizer and certificate issuer
CNCCPT is the organizer of HSK. And the CNCCPT Office and the HSK Center of BLCU are both in charge of the HSK affairs.
4. Test Dates and Venues
HSK is held regularly in Mainland China.
HSK Schedule in 2008
2008 HSK Test Dates for Mainland China Test Centers
Information about test centers in Mainland China
For residents of Hong Kong, Macau, Taiwan, and foreign countries, call the test center nearest to you to learn how and when to take the HSK.
Information about test centers in other countries and regions
(Borrowed from http://www.hsk.org.cn/index_e.aspx)