New Hanban tutors arrive in Cardiff University

Cardiff Confucius Institute was delighted to welcome four new Chinese tutors from Hanban on 25 February 2014. The four new tutors will be based in three of Cardiff Confucius Institutes Confucius Classrooms –  St Cenydd Comprehensive in Caerphilly, Cathays High School and Lansdowne Road Primary School in Cardiff.

The tutors will be hosted by Cardiff Confucius Institute for two years and in that time will deliver Mandarin and Chinese culture classes throughout schools in Wales, as well as working within the Lifelong Learning Centre at Cardiff University to provide Language tuition to adult learners and undergraduates.


The four new tutors are (left to right) Yuchuan Liu, Weili Wang, Jing Liu and Qi Ying

30 years of friendship between Cardiff and Xiamen at the Chinese Mid-Autumn Festival


People celebrating

On the evening of 1st October 2013, the Chinese Mid-Autumn Festival reception organised by Cardiff Confucius Institute took place in the Council Chamber, Main Building of Cardiff University.

80 attendees from the Welsh Government, National Centre for Languages in Wales, Cardiff County Council, Cardiff University, South Wales Chinese Association, and local primary and secondary schools got together to celebrate the Chinese Mid-Autumn Festival and to commemorate the 30th anniversary of the sister-city relationship between Cardiff and Xiamen.

The Lord Mayor of Cardiff, Councillor Derrick Morgan made a keynote speech. He said: “We in Cardiff are proud of our twinning link with the city of Xiamen. As I’m sure many of you have known, in 1983 Cardiff became the first city in the UK to twin with Xiamen in the People’s Republic of China.

“Over the past 30 years the relationship between the two cities has been built on a varied mix of cultural, economic and education-related activities – including the Confucius Classrooms initiative which gives school children the opportunity to learn Mandarin as part of their curriculum.”

The Executive Director of Cardiff Confucius Institute, Prof Anthony Beresford said:  “Welcome to everyone attending what I am sure will be a lively and enjoyable evening combining the performing arts, Chinese language and culture in a rich and engaging way. It is very appropriate that we are here in one of Cardiff’s most beautiful and prestigious buildings which combines the principles of learning, history and culture in such an inspirational setting. The activities planned for tonight for the Chinese Mid-Autumn Festival enable us to step a little way outside our normal range of experience and to enjoy the full cultural richness that the Chinese Martial Arts, Music, Dance and Traditional Costumes can provide.”

The Academic Director of Cardiff Confucius Institute, Dr Xueyi Zhu said: “The Mid-Autumn Festival consists of three fundamental meanings: gathering, thanksgiving and hoping. I would like borrow these three fundamental meanings to extend big thanks to all of you. Many thanks for coming to make this happy gathering come true. Many thanks for giving strong support and collaboration in our Mandarin Chinese teaching both in Cardiff University and schools in Wales. We also look forward to our multilevel and multifaceted cooperations in the future.”

The attendees were fascinated by the Chinese musician and very much enjoyed the Chinese Martial art and folk dance performed by the Confucius Institute at London South Bank University.

Finally the guests played their favourite Mid-Autumn Bo Bing game, which is a unique celebrating activity in Xiamen characteristics, and also has been a traditional programme of Cardiff Confucius Institute as the game well combining culture, folk custom and recreation.

One year after another, Cardiff Confucius Institute has been changing, developing and growing, however, what is remained all the time is the Reunion and Harmony symbolised by the Chinese Mid-Autumn Festival.

Come along to our Open Day!


If you need advice before enrolling on a course, come along to one of our Open Days. A Co-ordinating Lecturer or tutor will be on hand to help you.  Whether you need guidance about the language level you should be taking or you have a query about course content or nature of assessment, we want to help.

You will also be able to find out about our Pathways to a degree.  Our Co-ordinators will be on hand to offer advice on funding, enrolment and support available to fulfil your ambition to study a degree at Cardiff University.

Can’t make it to the Open Day? No problem! Check out out Open Day Online Page for useful information about Funding, Enrolment and much more.

Our Open Days are held in the Cyber Cafe at the Centre and have an informal and relaxed atmosphere.  Also, our Reception will be open to take your enrolment.

We look forward to meeting you!

Saturday 14 September

11.00am to 1.00pm

At the Cyber Cafe, 
Cardiff Centre for Lifelong Learning [click for map and directions],
Senghennydd Road, Cardiff CF24 4AG

Confucius Institute Taster Sessions

Saturday 14th September

  • Chinese Culture taster 11.00 am to 12.00 noon
  • Chinese language taster 12.00 noon to 1.00 pm

Come along to our free taster sessions to find out more about Chinese culture and Chinese language. Perfect if you are planning a holiday in the Far East, if you want to improve your CV or simply want to know more about one of the fastest growing major economies of the world.

No booking required, just turn up!

Visit the Confucius Institute

Confucius Classroom launched at Cathays High School

Cardiff Confucius Institute recently celebrated the launch of a Confucius Classroom at Cathays High School, Cardiff – bringing the total up to 11 Confucius Classrooms across Wales.

With their dedicated teachers from China, Confucius Classrooms are able to offer pupils Mandarin as part of their curriculum, as well as adapting subject areas such as History and Geography to include fascinating insights into China. Chinese teachers at the Confucius Classrooms also extend their teaching activities to other schools in their catchment areas, making extra-curricular and more regular teaching of Chinese available to many schools that might not otherwise have the resources or funding to deliver such enrichment.

The Cathays High School Confucius Classroom was launched on Monday 15th July 2013 by Mr Feng Zhi, the second secretary of the Education section of the Chinese Embassy, with representatives from the Welsh Government, the British Council and Cardiff Confucius Institute also in attendance.

The launch evening included musical performances from pupils at Cathays High School and a traditional Chinese tea Ceremony, as well as a tour of the dedicated Confucius Classroom, which was brightly decorated with Chinese crafts and examples of pupils work.

Eluned Davies- Scott, Head of Community Education and the teacher responsible for the Confucius Classroom at Cathays High said: “It is a really exciting time for Cathays High School’s partnership with China. We are delighted to be one of about 400 Confucius Classrooms that have been established in over 100 countries, demonstrating once again the truly international status of Cathays High School. We are a school that believes in opportunities for all and with China at the centre of the global economy the next generation will need to understand its culture and be able to work in its language.”

Cathays High is one of 11 Confucius Classrooms across Wales which form part of the Wales China Schools initiative managed by Cardiff University’s Confucius Institute. The school intends to develop Mandarin GCSE at the school, as well as using its Confucius classroom status to build partnerships with other primary and secondary schools to develop opportunities for Mandarin Language acquisition.

Rachel Williams, Cardiff Confucius Institute’s School’s Manager stated: “We are especially pleased to be able to participate in the formal launch of Cathays Confucius Classroom. This Classroom has been established in partnership with the Confucius Institute, based at Cardiff University, and reflects five years of partnership during which Chinese tutors from Cardiff University have been delivering courses at the school.”

A visit from Xiamen University leaders

Vice Chancellor and the delegation holding up a Chinese pictureA senior delegation from Xiamen University has visited the University to find out more about how Cardiff and Xiamen can work together in the future.

Led by Zhan Xinli, Vice President of Xiamen University, the delegates  met with Cardiff’s Vice-Chancellor and President, Professor Colin Riordan, Pro Vice-Chancellor, Innovation & Engagement, Professor Hywel Thomas and the Director of the University’s International Office, Richard Cotton

Professor Riordan commended the positive role Cardiff Confucius Institute had been playing in promoting exchanges and cooperation between Cardiff and Xiamen and expressed his hope that more scholars and students from Cardiff might get a chance to visit or study in Xiamen University.

Vice President Zhan Xinli put forward her constructive opinions concerning the bilateral development and cooperation and she made it clear that Xiamen University will do everything possible to support Cardiff Confucius Institute in order to actively promote the overall and multi-lateral cooperation and exchanges between the two universities.

Executive Director of Cardiff Confucius Institute, Professor Anthony Beresford said: “The Confucius Institute not only provides comprehensive services for promoting Chinese language and culture but also has become a platform and a bridge for exchange, through which more Cardiff University students and staff should be involved in the future.”

Senghennydd refurbishment

During the summer the first floor of Senghennydd Library has been transformed.

Three new group study rooms have been created, enabling groups of students to work together for the first time. The rooms feature new PCs, plasma screens for presentations and extra large whiteboards. Rooms can be booked in advance. Please contact the site for more information.

Both floors of the Library have been decorated and we now offer 80 study spaces all with new desks and comfortable chairs. Continuing the improvements, we have 25 newly installed open access PCs with access via Follow-me printing to new printer copiers. Laptop users can use the wireless printing service to access these facilities once they have registered their laptop. In Addition, laptop users can also use new lockers to improve security within the site.

A new focus on China

A new focus on China

Professor David Boucher

New initiatives to help build closer partnerships and collaboration across the University with China will be developed in response to plans for greater Internationalisation, according to the University’s new Dean for the Centre for Lifelong Learning.

Professor David Boucher, who succeeds Executive Director Dr Richard Evans as the Centre’s new Director and Dean, used the recent Chinese Mid Autumn Festival to announce news plans.

In his opening remarks, Professor Boucher announced that the Confucius Institute, whilst continuing to deliver its many external activities, will be developing new initiatives in 2013 to build closer partnerships and collaboration across the University.

Scott Andrews, General Manager of Cardiff Confucius Institute, said: “Once again we were delighted to welcome guests to celebrate this important festival in the Chinese calendar.

“The Confucius Institute continues to act as a beacon for China in Cardiff University and is committed to its ongoing initiatives with partners both from within the University and with those partners across Wales with whom we have developed opportunities to further develop an awareness and understanding of Chinese Language and culture.”

Guests were treated to traditional performances from pupils and students before having the chance to take part in Chinese cultural activities and Bo Bing – the Moon Cake Game played at the time of the Mid-Autumn Festival.

The festival was launched by Cardiff University’s Pro Vice-Chancellor for International and Engagement, Professor Hywel Thomas who has just returned from a trip to China during which he visited the Confucius Institute’s partner university in Xiamen.

He used the opportunity to highlight Cardiff University’s commitment to developing its international dimension and the significant role that the Confucius Institute and China played in pursing this strategy.

The Chinese Academic Director, Dr Xueyi Zhu closed the event. Dr Zhu said: “The Mid-Autumn Festival is also called the Moon Festival because the moon is at its fullest, purest, and brightest on this Mid-Autumn day.

“Chinese people always associate the bright and full moon with good things, such as reunion, harmony, fulfilment, togetherness, and wholeness. The festival is very popular and important among Chinese people and the Chinese Government listed the Mid-Autumn festival as an intangible cultural heritage in 2006.”

Related links:

Cardiff Confucius Institute

Welsh Primary Pupils Share classroom in China

Cardiff primary school pupils have been sitting alongside new classmates at a Chongqing School for classes of Chinese language and culture.

The trip to China was arranged for the Cardiff pupils as part of the Wales China School Project, run by Cardiff University’s Confucius Institute. In total 15 participants including children from Lansdowne Primary School and from the nearby Welsh Medium School Ysgol Pencae travelled to China.

The Confucius Institute’s project has been developing Chinese language and culture programmes in schools across Wales for the past five years. Lansdowne Primary School has been a pioneer having established additional classes every week. The school was the first in Wales to submit children for the YCT Official Chinese Language Proficiency test in 2011. Some of the successful pupils were among those travelling on the 12 Day Immersion trip to China.

The trip involved seven days in Xiamen (twinned with Cardiff) where the children participated in an intensive language immersion course held at Xiamen University’s Overseas College. This was then followed by a five day excursion to Chongqing where the children took part in classes at Zhong Silo Elementary School.

Lansdowne headteacher Richard Edwards, who was on the visit, said: “This has been a superb opportunity for all the children. Learning Chinese at Lansdowne has been an amazing experience for everyone involved and the immersion trip to China has enabled the children to gain a valuable insight into many different aspects of China. It has also proved to enhance our longstanding link with Zhong Silo Elementary School.”

Pupils from Ysgol Pencae had already completed a Chinese Cultural Awareness course at Cardiff University in 2011 and they regularly run China weeks at the school. Headteacher Richard Thomas said: “This trip was an important opportunity for both our children and for our school and we were able to establish new links with local schools in China that we hope to build on in years to come. This has proved to be an important opportunity for exploring how Chinese language and culture can be learnt alongside a Welsh medium context.”

Cardiff Confucius Institute’s Manager Scott Andrews led the expedition and hopes to see this as the start of many future schools-based trips to China. He said: “This trip has been the culmination of nearly five years of commitment to Chinese language learning across Wales and has been made possible with the support of British Council Wales and Cilt Cymru. It has demonstrated the significance that immersion learning can play as part of the overall commitment to language learning for children in Wales and I look forward to seeing future immersion trips developing through the Wales China Schools Project in due course.”

There are over 350 Chinese language courses delivered in schools across Wales each year supported by two Confucius Institutes and five Confucius Classrooms.

Miss Bethan Davies from Ysgol Pencae joins learners for a Chinese art class.

Welsh Schoolchild Nate Davies receives advice from his Chinese co-learner: Xiao Hong Chang

The head-teacher and staff of Zhong Silo Elementary School welcomes guests from Wales.

The Official welcome awaiting guests at Chongqing

WJEC assessor training event for Mandarin Assessors

On 31 May 2012 Cardiff Confucius Institute hosted a Mandarin assessor training course for WJEC as part of their accredited QCF language qualifications programme. The programme, led by WJEC assessor Sylvie Gartau, enables school children to take accredited short courses in one of six languages – French, Mandarin, German, Italian, Spanish and Japanese – which could qualify towards the language component of the Welsh Baccalaureate. Cardiff and Lampeter Confucius Institutes have been delivering Mandarin Welsh Baccalaureate programmes to school children for four years and have been invited by WJEC to act as a partner for the Mandarin component of this programme.

One of the trainee assessors is Xiamen University’s language teacher Li Xiaofen who is currently based at Cardiff Confucius Institute. She attended the first assessors training programme: “The Mandarin assessor training is the first step toward the promotion of Mandarin provision across Wales and prepares the future assessors with standardised assessment decisions. Take Mandarin as an example. Learners may begin from Entry level, or those with some basic Chinese skills may start with Level 1 or Level 2. Each unit is equivalent to either one credit (10 learning hours) or two credits (20 learning hours). Each spoken unit comprises 10 learning hours and is equivalent to one credit and each written unit comprises 20 learning hours and is equivalent to 2 credits. One or two credits are required for each Award.”

WJEC encourages tutors to make language learning a fun and enjoyable process and aspects of delivery were discussed at the training day. It is crucial for tutors to come up with interesting classroom activities to help learners learn faster and better and be able to use what they have learned in actual situations. All WJEC Qualifications in Languages units are internally assessed and externally moderated. By assessing learning in small, bite-sized steps—the units and awarding credit for qualifications, WJEC hopes that more and more people in Wales will be enthused, engaged and motivated to learn foreign languages

The Confucius Institutes for Wales have been working closely with WJEC and Cilt Cymru to partner in the development of Mandarin language programmes for schools in Wales.




Sylvie Gartau (WJEC) leads the Mandarin Assessors training day.