The Ministry of Education has scrapped its long-time regulation that only allowed Chinese citizens to be authorized Chinese Language teachers.
The ministry recently amended its "Methods on the Assessment of Teaching Abilities with Chinese as Foreign Language." Under the new rules, all people, regardless of their nationality, have the right to apply for the qualification, if they meet the requirements for the applicants.
The teaching abilities are divided into three categories, and qualified teachers will be granted certificates for each different level.
For those with preliminary grade of qualification, they have to participate into examinations on fundamental knowledge on Chinese Language, Chinese Culture and Mandarin.
The intermediate grades have to pass exams on Modern Chinese Language, Methodology for Teaching Chinese as a Foreign Language and Fundamental Knowledge of Chinese Culture.
Teachers with top-level certificate are to be tested on their knowledge on Modern and Ancient Chinese Languages, Linguistics and Methodology for Teaching Chinese as a Foreign Language and Chinese Culture.
As of the end of 2003, 3,690 people had obtained a certificate for teaching Chinese Language.
More than 25 million people overseas are currently studying the Chinese language, the government said.
(Xinhua News Agency September 16, 2004)