The language barrier

Communicating to people who do not speak your native language is difficult, especially when you have to live, work and study in their culture. Writes Danielle Cook…

Recently,  Coventry University exchanged students with ZUMC in China, to study alongside each other to create different media forms such as the Buzz newsletter, blogs and videos.

The two-week visit to China has been a real eye opener for the English exchange students. One of which is Fatima Ahmed, who said ‘the Chinese people are really friendly, but they look at you like you are from a different planet because we look different to them. And I am finding it really hard to order food because they do not understand me, so they just laugh. There are a few places with pictures of food so I just point at what I want but it’s still hard and kinda funny.’

Ordering food is one of the big issues that Coventry students are having living in China.

Although creating the media work and studying with the media students of ZUMC is enjoyable, as most Chinese students speak a little English so they are able to understand what the Coventry students are saying. They also teach the students basic Chinese words such as ‘Hello’, ‘Thank you’, ‘Sorry’ and ‘How much’. However, an organised one-off class has been arranged for the 19th April at 6:30pm for Coventry students to learn more words and sentences in Chinese.

The class location has not yet been confirmed. However, an update of this story will be available as soon as the information is released.

The class should make it easier to live, work and study for the students of Coventry University, who will be leaving China on the 28th April.

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Filed under China Trip 2011

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