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Some Suggestions for HSK Candidates

Many Chinese learners will have such a question: Which Band of HSK should I take? The following are some suggestions for choosing the HSK grade that best suits you.

HSK is divided into 6 bands, increasing in difficulty from Band 1 to Band 6. As the primary level examinations, the examination papers of the Band 1,Band 2 and Band 3 contain pinyin. These three bands are relatively more suitable for European and American students. Since some European and American students have a limited level of Chinese characters, it is suggested that European and American students at the primary level should start from Band 2, and the most ideal level is Band 3.

The HSK Band 4 and HSK Band 5 are intermediate level examinations, and there is no pinyin in the examination papers. Relatively speaking, Japanese students can start from Band 4 because of the advantages of Chinese characters. The vocabulary of Band 4 is about 1200, and it will take one year to one and a half years to learn. Therefore, after primary school, Japanese and Korean students will be able to start applying for HSK Band 4 when they reach the second half of the intermediate level, and the possibility of passing is relatively high. For European and American students, they must first learn Chinese characters well and then make use of their listening advantages. By doing so, it is likely for them to pass HSK Band 4. HSK Band 5 requires 2500 words, which is significantly more than Band 4. Therefore, it is more beneficial to Japanese students. However, it should be noted that  grammar tests of HSK Band 4 and 5  all focus on related words, so Japanese students should pay more attention to listening and grammar.

Of the Band 4 and Band 5, Band 5 is the most practical. Because when entering a university or looking for a job in China, the general requirement of Chinese level is HSK Band 5. Therefore, friends who plan to develop in China for a long time, please set your goal to HSK Band 5. If you have no long-term development plan in China and feel that Band 5 is too difficult, you can take HSK Band 4. However, it is recommended that everyone set the target at the more difficult Band 5, which can also improve learning motivation.

HSK Band 6 is an advanced level. Even the Chinese people find it difficult to take the test. One of the most difficult parts is 10 grammar questions and the other is a 400-word composition. Grammatical questions are difficult, but due to the small number, no special preparation is required. However, the composition accounts for a large proportion, so the composition needs to focus on practice. Another thing is that the vocabulary has soared to 5,000, so it needs a lot of preparation. Foreign friends who really like Chinese can take Band 6, but generally speaking, they only need to pass Band 5. It should be noted that it is better for foreigners studying in universities in China to pass HSK Band 6 when they graduate.

Some Suggestions for HSK Candidates