I finally broke out of my “next week, next week” procrastination mode and signed up for Mandarin Chinese classes. I’ve known about my move to Shanghai since November 2017, and kept telling myself I’ll sign up for classes “next week”. Here I am in July 2018 and, well, I’m in my first week of italki classes.
And looking back at studying Korean – I’m not fluent in Korean, but I’m alright and according to the Korean language board, have the equivalent of TOPIK 5. I don’t believe in those charts about x hours required, because:
They say that for Korean, that takes around 2,000 hours of study. I took a grand total of 380 hours of Korean classes. Levels 2, 3, 4 were 100 hours each. Level 5 was 50 hours. Each class hour was actually 50 minutes of class time, followed by a 10 minute break. And I only attended 80% of my classes because that’s what the minimum attendance requirement was. It’s hard to do a Monday-Friday 9-5, followed by classes from 9-6 on Saturday or Sunday. For Level 2, I had classes from 9-6 on both Saturday and Sunday, with an hourlong commute before and after!
… I attended 100% of my classes for Level 2, come to think of it.
I did a bit of homework and studying outside of class. Randomly chatting to coworkers in Korean. And living in Korea, but does that really count because I’m quite the house mouse?
I’m hoping the same works for Mandarin Chinese. The same words with slightly different pronunciations is throwing me off, though. I’m not sure if that makes it easier or harder.