The Current Situation of Teaching Chinese as a Second Language in New Zealand: A Case Study across Three Language Schools in Auckland

Author: Biyang Sun (University of Auckland)
Speaker: Biyang Sun
Topic: Language pedagogies
The (SCOPUS / ISI) SOAS GLOCAL CALA 2019 Poster Session


As China has gradually become a global economic power, more people start to study Chinese eitherdue to more job opportunities that come with the ability to speak Chinese or just pure interest in the language or culture. In New Zealand, in addition to the Chinese courses offered in universities and the Confucius Institute, many private Chinese institutions have sprung up with the aim to promote Chinese language and culture. However, the quality of the Chinese education in these private institutions is contestable as a result of: unstable provision of students and qualified teachers, being lack of appropriate textbooks, the culture gap between the institutions and the local society, etc.

This study focuses on the similarities and difference of three different Chinese language institutions across Auckland, each of which has its unique background and targets different groups of potential students. Through interviewing with the founders, teachers, and students of the institutions as well as conducting a yearlong participant observation, I aim to explore the sociological implications behind the Chinese language teaching, to see which role these institutions have played in the process of promoting Chinese culture, and to provide suggestions for future directions of Chinese language education in New Zealand. This research can contribute as a preliminary study of New Zealand case in the field of teaching Chinese as a second language.