Information about the HSK test

What is the HSK?

HSK stands for Hanyu Shuiping Kaoshi, which means literally: Test of level of Chinese.
By design, this is the most comprehensive proficiency test of Chinese as a second language. It tests the listening, reading, and writing skills. This test is made of six levels, ranging from 1 to 6, with an increasing level of difficulty. Daily life situations are put to the test, as the criteria for the vocabulary lists to master for each level is the frequency of use of the words. Only mandarin and simplified vocabulary are required for the HSK.

Who manages the HSK?

The HSK is designed and administered by Hanban, a Chinese public institution reporting to the Chinese Ministry of Education. Its mission is to spread the Chinese culture internationally to foreign learners, through the availability of educational resources and tests.

What is HSK Academy’s role?

HSK Academy, as an international non-profit organization, echoes this ambition to make Mandarin Chinese available to all, by gathering the requirements for passing the HSK tests. It provides learners with a platform of excellence for the vocabulary, characters, audios and quizzes, alongside regular blog articles and an active social media presence.

Direct access

If you already know your level, access directly it here:

Details per HSK

You can also find below more details about each level, and a link to the related resource offered by HSK Academy:

HSK 1
assesses the minimal requirements for a basic communication, and the ability to move forward with learning Chinese. For instance, this level introduces numbers, family and daily life terms, personal pronouns, essential verbs such as to be, to have, to love...
In short: test of 40 min in two parts (Listening, Reading). Total of 40 questions. 150 to know.
For more resources, click here: HSK 1
HSK 2
adds to the former level, to offer a complete coverage of the basic Chinese, for instance, about colors, time, with more action verbs and adverbs…
In short: test of 50 min in two parts (Listening, Reading). Total of 60 questions. 300 words to know (including the 150 from the preceding HSK)
For more resources, click here: HSK 2
HSK 3
strengthens the communication skills, especially about academic and professional activities. Whoever you meet while working and traveling, you will be able to present your case and hold the conversation.
In short: test of 85 min in 3 parts (Listening, Reading, Writing). Total of 80 questions. 600 words to know (including the 300 from the preceding HSK)
For more resources, click here: HSK 3
HSK 4
expands the range of topics, allows a more fluent communication.
In short: test of 100 min in 3 parts (Listening, Reading, Writing). Total of 100 questions. 1200 words to know (including the 600 from the preceding HSK)
For more resources, click here: HSK 4
HSK 5
opens the doors to the reading of newspapers and magazines, Chinese movies, and speeches.
In short: test of 120 min in 3 parts (Listening, Reading, Writing). Total of 100 questions. 2500 words to know (including the 1200 from the preceding HSK)
For more resources, click here: HSK 5
HSK 6
completes the reading and speaking skills, for a seamless and natural expression in Chinese.
In short: test of 135 min in 3 parts (Listening, Reading, Writing). Total of 101 questions. 5000 words to know (including the 2500 from the preceding HSK)
For more resources, click here: HSK 6

Additional information:

Hanban: http://english.hanban.org/
Wikipedia : https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hanyu_Shuiping_Kaoshi

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