This course is designed for absolute beginners with little or no knowledge of Mandarin Chinese. The class will introduce the phonics of Mandarin Chinese, sounds and tones, using the pinyin romanization system. Upon completion, students will be expected to establish a solid foundation in Chinese pronunciation (initials, vowels and most importantly, the tones). In addition, students will easily master 50 basic Chinese characters, most of which are commonly used to construct other characters. Students are also expected to be able to conduct short daily conversations, including greetings, expressing gratitude and introducing themselves, among many others. The textbook required for this course is Road to Success: Threshold, which is included in the course fee.