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Intensive Thai At Chula (basic 1 - Advanced 2), Your Questions Answered Here!


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Hi guys! I'm also looking into taking the course, hopefully joining from the Basic 2 class in November this year. I've done a 300 hour course previously and have some basic knowledge of the script, though I feel that I'm sorely lacking in vocabulary. In any case, I'm hoping to get placed into Basic 2. I've emailed the school but have not received a reply, hence I thought I shall seek your help here.

Can anyone advise on how I could arrange to take the qualifying test (which decided which level you are emplaced to)? What requirements would they have of someone trying to get into basic 2? What is the test format like? How long does it take to get the results?

Many thanks in advance!

Basic 2 is when Chula introduces Thai script, so it wouldn't matter how much you know about that, you will start from scratch.

You can schedule a placement exam with the office when they get back to you. I'm not exactly sure of the format of that exam versus the actual class exams. The class exams contain elements of listening, speaking and writing (writing using english characters)... Basic I was pretty easy, but there is a lot of vocabulary. However, 300 hours of class certainly has to put you into Basic 2. If you can't read and write fluently, then you will not place out of Basic 2 (and it would be pointless to try, since the teachers will only write Thai in Basic 3).

Might not hurt to get a copy of the Basic I book ahead of time too... it's hard to catch up in this course if you get behind, so you'll want to make sure you are solid on all of the previously-taught vocabulary before going to Basic 2.

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  • 1 month later...

Hi guys,

I'm scheduled to do my test next week. I'm wondering if any one can tell me what to expect? As in, how does the interview process go and what sort of conversation topics do the interviewers bring up?

What about the written exam? What do they test?

Really nervous about this! Would appreciate any advise at all, thanks!

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Come on, you said you had 300 hours of class already and you're only trying to test into Basic 2 (because of lack of reading/writing), yea? You have nothing to be nervous about. :) The Basic 1 exam was simple... even the guy in my class that we all thought would never pass it got an 82% on it. LoL

The speaking was a little embarassing, but it wasn't difficult... I think one thing I had to do was pretend to be buying some pants from my teacher, and then had to ask for a discount or something... and after that I had to call and book a room at a hotel or something. Nothing terribly difficult, and it wasn't like you have to get 100% to pass either. (u have to get a pretty low score to fail.. I can't remember, but it's like 60% to fail)

My advice is that if u remember most of what you learned in your class then don't worry about it anymore... a placement exam is just that, they are gonna place you where you belong... you can't fail out of Basic 1, so worst case scenario is you have to take a 5 week course before Basic 2. :D

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I did the test for Chula at the beginning of this year. It was a little intimidating, as they use the same test for everyone, whether its basic 2 or advanced 3 you hope to get into (I was aiming for basic 2 or 3). There were half a dozen of us, and the others taking it were way ahead of me. Most of the test was reading and writing while they interviewed each of us. As far as I can remember the tests were similar to the ones you will meet when you do the course - a list of words your should then write a sentence in thai using each one. A list of words and a paragraph, insert the words into the blank spaces in the paragraph. Read a paragraph and answer questions on it.

The Thai I knew up til then was mostly what I have learned talking with waiters, fishermen and shopkeepers so I didn't recognise a lot of the words. I wasn't even sure what some of the paragraphs were about let alone know the answers to the questions!

The interview was similar, the chap asking me questions using a lot of vocabluary that I didn't have - what personal characteristics did I possess sticks in my mind, as no one had ever asked me that in Thai and I didn't have any appropriate vocabulary to answer it. My friends usually talk about food and women and neither came up...

So by the end of the test I felt very stupid. I had spent a lot of my time there staring at a sheet of paper not being able to write anything appropriate! But it's not a pass/fail test, it's just their way of assessing your level so they place you appropriately. As I could read and write already I was thinking I might scrape into basic 3, but I'm glad I ended up in 2 as there was a lot of ground work I hadn't covered in my haphazard learning up til then, and the course moves very quickly and covers a lot of ground, and I think I would have struggled in 3.

I loved the course and I hope you do too. Good luck.

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Thanks for your replies chappies! Admittedly, I am fretting quite a bit, because the 300 hours I've had was not in Thailand and I've not had the opportunity to use whatever little I had acquired. I can string sentences together but I am almost hopeless at listening, which would explain my anxiety. In any case, Basic 2 is the absolute minimum for me to qualify for because my sponsors had already paid for the 300 hours of foundation training and will not contemplate me starting all over again here, so its pretty much do or bust.

I've only heard good things about the course, so I'm really hoping to get in. Thanks for all the info!

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  • 2 months later...
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  • 5 months later...

Let's bring this thing back to life!

This thread basically made me take the plunge after 2 years of procrastination. I am now in this insane program at Chula.

Anyone wanting up to date info on this course, fire away!

Hi KoreaElte,

I am wondering how your first course at Chula has gone? Have you managaed to complete it succesfully and was it as difficult as some people are mentioning here? How much extra study time did you put in? I am interested in taking this course and am looking forward to hearing your opinions on it.

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  • 4 months later...

Pleeeeease get me some up to date info on this???? I wanna apply to start in may/june and VERY excited!!!(i will be basic 1 I imagine, can you fail and not even get into that???)

Is it frequently over subscribed ie, should i book onto it now?

Many thanks!

Gee

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Pleeeeease get me some up to date info on this???? I wanna apply to start in may/june and VERY excited!!!(i will be basic 1 I imagine, can you fail and not even get into that???)

Is it frequently over subscribed ie, should i book onto it now?

Many thanks!

Gee

I just completed Basic 1 and will start Basic 2 on Jan. 4. I don't know how early you should book it. I booked and paid for my registration about a month before it started. There is no entrance exam for Basic 1 since it assumes you have no knowledge of Thai. The only way you could fail to get it is if it were fully booked, but I have no idea if that is likely or not. If you're in BKK, why not go over to the Intensive Thai program office and talk with Khun Nanyupa about it. If you are not here, then give them a call. I visited the office a year before I started the course and had a helpful conversation with one of the teachers.

Good luck. It is a terrific course, well-planned out with excellent teachers. Those who complete the nine levels are fully functional in Thai. You won't learn this much Thai in a year any other way.

Edited by CaptHaddock
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which level are you on now ? is the fees still 20k a pop ?

It's still ฿25,000 for the five-week, 100 hour course. Although there is a new schedule posted on the website that is somewhat different. Nevertheless, I confirmed the schedule for my Basic 2 course.

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which level are you on now ? is the fees still 20k a pop ?

It's still ฿25,000 for the five-week, 100 hour course. Although there is a new schedule posted on the website that is somewhat different. Nevertheless, I confirmed the schedule for my Basic 2 course.

Does anyone have any recommendations for other less expensive programs for the "basic" Thai language education? The OP said that in his estimation there might very well be other programs just as good for basic as Chula's program is and for somewhat lesser cost.

Any info is very much appreciated.

Thanks,

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