Tuesday, November 10, 2015

Preparing to take the STAMP Chinese Proficiency Test

The first step in applying to the HNC is to take the Avant Assessment's STAMP Chinese Proficiency Test. The STAMP is the most convenient way to ensure that you will be prepared to study at the HNC. We have answered commonly asked questions about the test and how to best prepare. 

What exactly is the STAMP test?

The STAMP test is an online Chinese Proficiency test that is required for admission to the HNC. The STAMP is entirely multiple choice, and students are required to take both the reading and listening portions of the test. There is no oral or written component.

How do I take the STAMP test? 
You can take the STAMP online with a proctor.  There's no need to go to a testing center. Professors, work supervisors, university administrators, or tutors are all suitable choices to proctor a STAMP test.    

Is there a practice test that I can take to prepare?
There are no formal study guides for the exam, but when you request the STAMP from our office, we’ll send you a link to a practice test to give you a better idea of the structure of the test. Please note however that the practice test is not meant to demonstrate the difficulty level of the exam. 

How can I best prepare for the STAMP test?
The STAMP test is a content-based test and tests your ability to understand the main ideas from Chinese passages and recordings. Although there are no formal study guides to purchase ahead of time, there are a things you can do in preparation for the test. Reading Chinese news articles and listening to Chinese news broadcasts and podcasts can help you prepare. The “That’s Mandarin Blog” has compiled some recommended online Chinese language resources. Their list of the top 10 Chinese language resources can also help you improve your Chinese and prepare for the STAMP test.
Can I take the HSK instead?
We don’t accept HSK scores as the HSK is a vocabulary-based test. The STAMP test is content-based and is more reflective of coursework at the HNC.

What if I have already taken the STAMP test?
If you attend a university that requires the STAMP as part of its curriculum, please contact nanjing@jhu.edu for more information on how to transfer that score to your application.

All STAMP tests must be completed by February 1st, but we find that many graduating seniors find it more convenient to submit the test request form during the fall semester, before going on winter break. Good luck!