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The making of a textbook: a Chinese language resource for the modern-day classroom

Meet the Author
Thursday 14 October 2021, 18:00-19:00
Online (Zoom)

Go behind the scenes with two authors from the team who created ‘Social Perspective’, a Chinese textbook that explores social issues in contemporary China. 

This is an online-only event. Please register via Eventbrite

Discover how this textbook addresses the needs of modern learners and teachers, weaving together key language and discussion of issues such as gender equality.

社会视角 Social Perspective by Yi Ning, Wei Shao, Zhengrong Yang and Esther Tydesley is a course aimed at intermediate to advanced learners. This volume of the textbook covers five current social issues in China (gender equality, e-commerce, Internet culture, food and health, and environmental protection) to provide students with a real-life background to increase their debating and written skills.  

This talk by Ning Yi and Esther Tyldesley will help you understand how a textbook is made and consider how language and culture are inextricably linked. Through real-life examples from the textbook and the speakers’ own experiences, the talk will increase your understanding of social issues in modern China as well as development of Chinese language teaching.  

Lead author Ning Yi, who taught Chinese at the University of Leeds for almost 30 years before her retirement in 2017, will introduce the textbook and share insights into how a publishing project like this works.  

Co-author Esther Tyldesley, who has an MA in Applied Translation Studies (Chinese) from the University of Leeds, will elaborate upon how the textbook links language to real-life issues, drawing from her own experience as a language learner and teacher and including examples related to the themes in the book. 

Target audience 

This talk will be delivered in English. The textbook is aimed at teachers of Chinese and Chinese learners at an intermediate level and above, and the talk may include some Chinese language content or assume some knowledge of Chinese culture. Anyone with a keen interest in the lecture topic is very welcome to attend. 

About the speakers

Ning Yi headshotYi Ning is an associate professor and has nearly 30 years of teaching experience in Chinese language at the University of Leeds. She was in charge of Chinese teaching in East Asian Studies for more than 15 years until her retirement in 2017. 


Esther Tyldesley headshotEsther Tyldesley has a BA in Chinese Studies from Cambridge and an MA in Applied Translation Studies (Chinese) from the University of Leeds. She is a teaching fellow in Chinese and Translation at the University of Edinburgh, and also works as a literary translator.  


About the textbook 

社会视角Social Perspective by Yi Ning, Wei Shao, Zhengrong Yang and Esther Tydesley is a course set over one academic year for intermediate learners of Chinese. In two volumes, it focuses on developing learners’ language competency to a high advanced plus/advanced level (ACTFL/CEFR B2-C1) through exploring social issues in contemporary China. 

The textbook draws upon the discussion of a wide range of current social issues in China to provide students with a real-life background to increase their debating and written skills. Volume I explores five topics: gender equality, e-commerce, Internet culture, food and health, and environmental protection.  

The textbook is written in fluent, accurate and high-quality Chinese language which is conveniently broken down to highlight all the important language elements (expressions, vocabulary, phrases and grammar). This course will equip students with language production capability at an advanced level and prepare students for the transition from academic study to employment. 

Each lesson includes a wide range of language drills and exercises designed to quickly improve learners’ oral expression and conceptual understanding through group discussions, essays, presentations, bidirectional translation and critical reflection. Online resources such as audio recordings, dictation exercises and supplementary reading material are also included. 

Written by a team of highly experienced teachers, 社会视角Social Perspective is the ideal course to progress intermediate students to an advanced level. Academics and researchers with an interest in Chinese contemporary social issues will also find this a useful tool for further language study.