Many people ask: « Why you are going to learn that language? It's not useful for you! ». I think that is the most ignorant and stupid comment that someone can make (I don't want to sound like Donald, but anyway...). There are many reasons to do it because you can benefit from learning a new language. I love English, but it's not the only language on this planet.
When you learn a language, you learn a new culture, a new way to see the world and understand people. Because your way to do things is not the only way or the best way neither.
Many people like exotic food, but they're not intested to learn about the people that make the food. In my case, I'm interested. I like to know why things are the way they are and learning the language of any culture helps a lot.
So, I began to learn Chinese. I'm not very confident with my progress, but I will finish when I'll finish. I always have to respect a schedule when I'm learning something. This time, only one course won't be enough and I don't care about finishing the course, I'm more concerned about learning the right way.
I've finished two courses on Coursera, "Chinese for Beginners" and "More Chinese for Beginners". The first course was a little dificult the first week. I began the course two or three times this year and abandonned it with out advancing more far than the first week. That was tough, but two or three months ago, I was able to finish the first week and the rest was easy.
The second course is more difficult that the first one. That's normal, I think. I've finished the course two weeks ago. It's a six week course and there are some quizes that I was able to do. I have to write in Pinyin or in Chinese characters for that. I'm not at that level yet. Someday.
These courses are free, the quizes are available for free too. For most of the courses on Coursera you have to pay in order to access the quizes. That's very good in this case. If you want a certificate, you have to pay 60 dollars, I'm not sure if they are in US dollars or Canadian dollars. Most of the time most of the web sites charge in US dollars.
Here are some important informations about the courses :
Chinese for beginners : https://www.coursera.org/learn/learn-chinese
More Chinese for Beginners : https://www.coursera.org/learn/more-chinese-for-beginners
Associate Professor : Xiaoyu Liu
University : Pekin University