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China to Set up Confucius Institutes in U.S.

Chinese language education is currently experiencing a boom in the United States, with insufficient teachers to meet the growing demand.

In order to further promote and popularize Chinese language education and to boost the internationalization of the Chinese language, the China National Office for Teaching Chinese as a Foreign Language plans to establish a number of Confucius Institutes in the United States over the next two years.

Such institutes  will be responsible for training programs for teachers as well as other Chinese language teaching and learning activities.

Sources from the New York Service Center for Chinese Study Fellows said that three models could be adopted to set up Confucius Institutes in the United States: direct investment by the head office, cooperation with American institutions, and franchising to other institutions.

The Chinese side will provide a standard school emblem and establish a uniform teaching model. Meanwhile, it will also provide a certain number of teachers and books.

With the rapid development of China's economy and the increasingly extensive communication between China and the United States, more and more Americans are studying Chinese. Chinese has become the seventh most popular foreign language, after Spanish, French, German, Italian, etc.

The United States University Council has decided to set up an AP (Advanced Placement) test on Chinese subject for high schools all over the country.

(Chinanews.cn January 27, 2005)

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