TOCFL – Chinese Language TestAugust 1, 2023 2023-08-02 3:44
TOCFL – Chinese Language Test
TOCFL stands for “Test of Chinese as a Foreign Language.” This is the standardized Mandarin exam promoted by the Republic of China (ROC), i.e., Taiwan.
The test measures the Mandarin ability of non-natives speakers and overseas Chinese worldwide.
This means anyone who is not a valid citizen of Taiwan can take the test to check the Chinese ability.
Who gives the test?
The Test of Proficiency-Huayu is run by the Steering Committee for the Test of Proficiency-Huayu (SC-TOP).
The Ministry of Education of the Republic of China is in charge of it.
When it began in 2005, it was called TOP, which stood for Test of Proficiency-Huayu. The most recent version came out in 2013.
TOCFL is known all over the world
The government of Taiwan agrees that TOCFL is a good way to prove that you can speak Chinese.
So, it is accepted by all universities, academic institutions, foreign organisations, and government groups in Taiwan.
It is used by about 100 schools and businesses in Australia, Japan, Indonesia, South Korea, Switzerland, the United States, Vietnam, Thailand, and other places to test students’ Chinese skills.
Many businesses want to hire people who can do jobs that require them to know Chinese. And they take the TOCFL scores into account. So, in recent years, it has gotten a good name for itself.
Do remember that this certification is not accepted in mainland China, Hong Kong, or Macau.
In these places, HSK is required. Taiwan doesn’t have it and doesn’t support it either.
TOCFL Mandarin Test Pros and Cons
There are many clear benefits. Here are some that are well-known.
Taiwan offers scholarships
Each year, the government of Taiwan gives scholarships, grants, and fellowships to foreign students who deserve them.
This scholarship will pay you a monthly stipend and give you other benefits while you are in Taiwan. So you can get a good education for a low price or for free. Who would want to miss a chance that only comes around once in a lifetime?
There are many scholarships, such as the “MOFA Taiwan Fellowship,” the “Taiwan Scholarship,” and the “Ministry of Education Huayu Enrichment Scholarship (HES) for learning Mandarin.” There are a lot of scholarships from the government to different companies and schools for people who want to study in Taiwan.
You can take TOCFL if you want to be eligible. This is the most important reason why you should take this test.
You don’t have to pass this for all scholarships. It depends on many things, like the course, how well you did in school, and your profile. Still, many people do want it. In any case, it will give you a lot more chances.
To get into some colleges and universities in Taiwan, you might also need a certain level. Check with them to find out what’s going on.
It improves job and career prospects
Do you know Mandarin and want to work for a company that does business with Chinese people or businesses?
This can give your resume a huge boost. With the certification and your other skills and experience, you should be able to get an interview.
Even though HSK is more common, many companies still take TOCFL scores for jobs that require Chinese skills.
You’re in luck if you want to work in Taiwan. Because it is the only Chinese certification that is accepted in the country.
You will know how good your Chinese is
If you’re learning Chinese, you do want to know how well you’re doing. In that case, the TOCFL is an excellent choice.
You will see what your current strengths and weaknesses are.
This test can help you focus on the things you need to work on. And so, encourage you to study better for the next test.
Plus, the format of the test is the same as the HSK. In fact, TOCFL is more complicated. So, you will prepare for it and boost your motivation.
What test do I take? TOCFL or HSK
It depends on the country
HSK is helpful if you want to get a scholarship to a Chinese university. Also, Taiwanese universities can benefit from TOCFL.
This is also true if you want to apply for jobs in each company’s region.
Taiwan doesn’t have HSK because it would be bad for politics. In the same way, Mainland China, Macao, and Hong Kong do not have TOCFL.
So, choose the test based on where you want to study.
The good news is that you can take both, since the tests are pretty much the same in terms of format and level. Not taking the test takes time, but learning does.
Language proficiency exams
Both tests check how well a person speaks, reads, writes, and listens in a language. Still, they don’t use a single test to measure all four skills.
For example, the standard HSK test checks how well you can write, listen, and read. They have a different HSKK for speaking (Hanyu Shuiping Koushi Kaoshi).
TOCFL uses 3 different tests to check for 4 skills: writing, speaking, listening and reading.
Simplified Vs. Simplified & Traditional
The use of Chinese characters is yet another big difference between HSK and TOCFL.
HSK uses Chinese characters that are easier to read. On the other hand, candidates for the TOCFL can choose between simplified and traditional ways of writing.
How hard it is
Even though the format and structure of both tests are the same, TOCFL is more difficult than HSK.
For example, you need to know about 5,000 words for HSK VI. But the highest level of TOCFL requires that you know about 8000.
The new version of HSK, which has 9 levels instead of the old one’s 6, might be just as hard as the old one.