Coronavirus Update: Washington College responds to coronavirus outbreak. More Info

World Languages and Cultures


Chinese is one of the most fascinating and important languages in the world! 

Right now, about one of every five human beings uses Mandarin Chinese as their native language, and millions more have Chinese as a secondary or working language.  At Washington College, the Chinese language program can give you the skills and experience to join this vibrant community.

Why Learn Chinese?

  • Learning any new language improves brain function, improving memory and enhancing mental flexibility.[1]
  • The current economic and geopolitical position of China makes understanding China critical. This is why the U.S. Government has labeled Mandarin Chinese a “Critical Language.”[2]
  • At Washington College, our Chinese program is rigorous, giving you a firm foundation in the language, as well as the culture and social contexts of China.
  • There is no better way to understand another culture than by seeing the world through their language.
  • Learning Chinese not only allows you to communicate with billions of people, it also gives you access to centuries of Chinese literature, history, and science.
  • Washington College’s study abroad partnerships are excellently positioned to support students of Chinese language, history, and culture. In addition to other options throughout Asia, we have strong partners in Lingnan University in Hong Kong, and very soon we will begin a partnership with CSI at Peking University in Beijing. 
  • Chinese language ability will make your resume stand out from the rest!

FAQs About Learning Chinese

I’ve heard Chinese is too hard!  Can I take Chinese with my major?  Aren’t there two sets of characters to learn?

Click here to see the answers to frequently asked questions about learning Chinese.

Chinese Learning Resources

Looking for a way to improve your Chinese study? Keep your Chinese up over summer break? Need a little refresher, or just want to take a look at what learning Chinese would look like?  

Click here for a growing list of resources to help you learn Chinese.




[1] “What happens in the brain when you learn a language?”