Chinese Proficiency Test (HSK)

Chinese Proficiency Test (HSK)

Dec,03 2014

1.What is HSK?

HSK, the full name of which is Hanyu Shuiping Kaoshi, was launched by the Center for Language Education and Cooperation and authorized by Chinese Test International (CTI). It isthe most authoritative standardised test for Chinese language learners to evaluate their Chinese language level.

After nearly thirty years of continuous improvement, a testing and service system has been established with the Chinese Proficiency Test (HSK) as the leader, including the Chinese Proficiency Speaking Test (HSKK), Business Chinese Test (BCT), Primary and Secondary School Chinese Test (YCT), Medical Chinese Proficiency Test (MCT), etc., forming a global Chinese exam brand that is adaptable to needs, diverse in types, fully functional, and professional and authoritative.

2.What are the contents of the HSK exam?

HSK focuses mainly on testing students’ Chinese communicative competence for everyday life, study and work. It is divided into oral and written examinations: 

The written examination is split into HSK (level 1), HSK (level 2), HSK (Level 3), HSK (Level 4), HSK (Level 5) and HSK (level 6).Starting from November 26, 2022, the Center for Language  and Cooperation  added three levels of HSK7-9. Level 7-9 focuses on examining the ability of candidates who use Chinese as a second language to engage in standardized and appropriate social communication on complex topics in social life, academic research, and other fields.

The full name of the oral examination is Hanyushuiping Kouyu Kaoshi (HSKK), and is split into HSKK (Primary level), HSKK (Intermediate level) and HSKK (Advanced level).

3. Who can apply for HSK?

Chinese learners from anywhere in the world can apply for the examination (without age restriction).

4.What kind of Chinese communicative competence do HSK levels 1 to 9 represent?

Passing HSK Level 1 means that you can communicate in Chinese at a basic level, and at HSK Level 2 you are more proficient and have achieved an excellent level of elementary Chinese. The Chinese proficiency levels that can be achieved at other levels are as follows:


You can complete basic communication tasks in everyday life, study and work in Chinese. When travelling in China, you can deal with communication tasks in some scenarios.


You can read Chinese newspapers and magazines as well as enjoy Chinese film and television festivals.  


You can use spoken and written Chinese fairly comprehensively.


You can easily understand information that you hear or read in Chinese.  You can express the points fluently in spoken or written Chinese.


Good listening, speaking, reading, and writing skills, as well as preliminary professional translation skills. Able to engage in basic, standardized, fluent, and appropriate social communication on a wide range of high-level topics.


Good listening, speaking, reading, and writing skills, as well as basic professional translation skills. Able to engage in standardized, fluent, and appropriate social communication on various high-level or professional topics.


Good listening, speaking, reading, writing skills, and professional translation skills. Able to comprehensively apply various skills and engage in standardized, fluent, and appropriate social communication on various topics in various contexts.

5. What difference does taking HSK make?

For learners:

A pass for studying in China;

A powerful qualification for competing in the workplace;

A requirement for applying for scholarships and summer camps;

A reference for understanding and improving your ability to use Chinese.

For institutions and teaching centers:

A reference point for recruitment, classroom teaching, course exemption, granting credit and evaluating teaching.

For companies: 

A reference point for employment, training and promotion of staff.

6 How many times is the HSK held each year?   

The HSK examinations are relatively frequent. In 2022, the exam was held  in January, March, April, may, July, October, November, and December.

The specific examination dates are published on CTI’s website

7. How do I register for an HSK examination and what does it cost?      

Log in to the official website of Hankao International to register an account and fill in relevant information as required.For more details, please refer to the explanation of the International Examination Rules for the Chinese National Examination: