Cary Jacobson

“CLI’s greatest strength is its modern facility located in beautiful Guilin with the nearby college, restaurants, shopping and easy to use public transportation providing the perfect learning environment. That plus the river, mountains and lakes would attract any person interested in China. The CLI support staff from the directors to the cook have put together a very well organized facility and system that takes students seamlessly from the time of arrival in Guilin to safe housing (at the school, a private apartment or with a Chinese family) and language instruction. Organized and ad-hoc field trips expose students to the people and the many sites and activities of the surrounding area. The CLI Chinese instructors are native speakers especially educated, trained and selected for their ability to teach, as a team, all facets of Chinese to foreign language students. Several instructors work together, sometimes with interns, to develop and implement a program that best fits the students’ needs and goals, making adjustments as needed. CLI’s greatest strength is all of the above: To provide an environment where instructors and students come together with other native speakers in their natural setting to allow the student to meet his or her goals in a somewhat controlled but dynamic and completely Chinese society.”

Karin Zone

“The pace of the one-on-one classes always suited me. This also enabled time for interesting discussion not necessarily related to the curriculum, which I deem important to be important to further expand knowledge of Chinese culture, etc. Also, Ayi’s (the in-house chef) cooking deserves high praise. The variety and quality of dished was excellent!”

Helen Jacobsen

“Through one-on-one classes, I was able to focus on topics, vocabulary, and grammar that I most needed. The one-on-one classes, I was able to focus on topics, vocabulary, and grammar that I most needed. The one-on-one classes also allowed me to speak so much in Chinese that I really feel more fluent now!”

Karin Zone

“The teacher’s flexibility helped me address speaking issues I have had for a long time, because classes were tailored to practice the grammar I most struggled with. I also really appreciated the teacher follow-up. If I raised a question one day, the teachers prepared an exercise for that question the next day.”

Karolina Rysava

“The one-on-one classes are the best aspect of CLI – I have experienced many language courses but have never had one-on-one classes. It is the best way to study Chinese and I would highly recommend it to other students. My teachers were wonderful!”

Karin Zone

“CLI’s flexibility and adaptability to any kind of student is the school’s greatest strength. It helped me get comfortable with first testing out my current abilities and pitfalls and improving with confidence, such that I got into the habit of self-learning as well as relying on my teacher’s expertise. The most important aspect of the program is the one-on-one learning. I was constantly getting feedback, and this iteration of feedback helped improve my grammar immensely. I can now pay more attention to my tones, especially if there is a chance of misunderstanding.”

Hanna Lichtenstein

“The obvious [strength] here would be the teachers. However, I feel like another very great strength is the security of the CLI community. CLI allows me to be and feel independent, but also is a secure, safe and very reliable foundation to fall back on whenever need be. There wasn’t a day when I didn’t appreciate this foundation. The feeling of security in a foreign country is extremely important, and it allowed me to totally enjoy myself, and learn! In my opinion, the one-on-one style of teaching is the best. When combined with cultural immersion, and the necessity of speaking Chinese outside of the classroom every day, you can get an entire year’s worth of study in just one month. It’s amazing!”

Blair Marshall

“The people, of course are [CLI’s greatest strength]. CLI has attracted not only quality staff and teachers, but people who love life and create a positive and fun environment. It’s also very important having the interns to reinforce what is being learned in the classroom.”

Elizabeth Lazo

“How personal everything is at CLI is probably the school’s biggest strength. One-on-one teaching, on top of home-cooked meals, Chinese interns and so much more. Don’t ever lose that! It’s essential that CLI is so interconnected and active in the student’s everyday lives.”

Brendan Corney

“So many strengths! Having the Chinese environment where you speak with everyone day to day was the best feature. It meant I became used to speaking very quickly, with no option to fall back to English. I would definitely encourage everyone to keep this subtle pressure up!”

Gus Walsh

“In my opinion, CLI’s greatest strength is its teachers and staff members. Other than the fantastic jobs they do teaching students Chinese in the classroom setting, CLI’s teachers are eager to participate and facilitate outside-the-classroom learning, such as meals and activities, on the weekend and during the week.”

Graham Reinhard

“The immersion aspect of CLI is fantastic. In order to communicate with anyone, Chinese is a must. Living in an apartment with Chinese roommates really helped improve my Chinese language skills. The family/community aspect of CLI is like none other; everyone is always here to help which is fantastic!”

Michael Salmon

“The teachers were incredibly knowledgeable and helpful. They went the extra mile to incorporate material into the classes that were relevant to my interests and working life.”

Finola Hackett

“CLI’s greatest strength is the sense of community among students, teachers, interns and staff. The quality of the people here is outstanding and makes for a very open, friendly and conducive learning environment. I had never learned Chinese before, but was able to quickly pick up the basics without feeling overwhelmed.”

Nadia Lund

“The most important aspect of CLI’s intensive Chinese program was the one-on-one class, especially tailored for me. We focused on what I wanted to learn and I could ask as many questions as I wanted. [Everyone] was very organized and there was a lot of cooperation between students and staff.”

Laura Wishart

“I think CLI’s greatest strength is its staff. All the people working for CLI truly care about their students and promote a fantastic learning environment. The one-on-one classes really forced me to learn at a much faster pace than I would have [back home].”

Alexandra H.

“The teachers at CLI are outstanding. They are all enthusiastic and committed. When the weaknesses of the textbook and my weakness learning the material became apparent, [my teachers] worked hard to create supplemental materials to help me drill the vocabulary and grammar. The activities organized by [CLI’s Activity Manager] were fantastic. They really add to the experience of CLI. I learned many things about Chinese habits and customs I never learned in six years in Shanghai.”

Gudren Mattes

“The most important aspect of CLI’s intensive immersion program is the flexibility of the teaching methods used, the high quality of the teachers and their motivation to push me to the next level, and the fact that I received tailor-made language training with the best possible results.”

Jean-Claude Thelen

“CLI’s greatest strength is the friendly nature of the staff and students. The atmosphere at CLI is very good and all the people were easy to get along with. In addition, the extra-curricular activities made my stay even more interesting as I learned to play Mahjong, Chinese Chess, etc. Last but not least, my homestay family was absolutely fabulous and I would have not wanted to miss that opportunity for the entire world. I had an absolutely superb time.”

Tiago Coelho

“CLI is like a community-driven project that creates a great environment for students to learn Chinese. I felt completely comfortable living at CLI and almost only had to focus on learning the language. The complete availability of the teachers to help the students whenever they needed was also an important aspect of the intensive language program.”

Amy Glazer

“CLI is a very welcoming community. It was great to have somebody at all times I could turn to for help, either with my workload or just to feel comfortable in a new setting. CLI’s teachers care a lot about their students and how they are doing. They are also not bound to a set curriculum like most schools are, so they are able to focus on what the individual student needs.”

Daniel Del Bosque

“CLI’s size, flexibility and ability to accommodate students are among its greatest strengths. Because it's a small community, it is easy to build relationships with the teachers and staff. I truly felt at home and had the freedom to refine my plans as needed.”

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