Five Year Road Map

The University of Mississippi’s Flagship Program curriculum assists students in achieving superior proficiency in Mandarin Chinese (defined as the Superior level of proficiency on the American Council for the Teaching of Foreign Languages scale or 3 on the U.S. government’s Interagency Language Roundtable scale).

Classes are focused on student performance and are conducted in Chinese. Students take classes at The University of Mississippi in Oxford and in China & Taiwan. Each semester students enroll in one Chinese language course in addition to coursework related to their own major. After achieving Advanced High proficiency by the spring semester of their senior year, students spend a fifth “capstone” year of study and internship in China to achieve Superior proficiency.

The information on this page represents the most common pathway a student will take on his/her road to the Superior level of proficiency. Actual selection and timing of courses will depend on each learner’s language background, progress, and non-Chinese language coursework. For example, heritage learners and incoming freshmen with considerable knowledge of Mandarin may begin their study in the fall semester of their freshman year by taking CHIN 211. Additionally, all students are encouraged to study abroad during one academic semester of their undergraduate career. Academic advisers at the university will assist students in fitting their study abroad experience into the Flagship schedule.

Five-Year Map for Students Beginning with No Prior Study of Chinese

Computer Phone

Year 1

Time Location Course
SS I Oxford, MS Chin 111: Intensive Chinese I
SS II Oxford, MS Chin 112: Intensive Chinese II
Fall Oxford, MS Chin 211: Intensive Chinese III
Spring Oxford, MS Chin 212: Intensive Chinese IV

Year 2

Time Location Course
Summer Chiayi, Taiwan Chin 215: Chinese Practicum 1
Fall Oxford, MS Chin 313: Media Chinese I: Newspapers and Internet
Spring Oxford, MS Chin 314: Media Chinese II: Broadcast News

Year 3

Time Location Course
Summer Taiwan Chin 315: Chinese Practicum II*
Fall Oxford, MS Chin 417: Intro to Modern Chinese Literature
Spring Oxford, MS Chin 418:Introduction to Classical Chinese
Chin 450: Domain Mentorship**


Year 4

Time Location Course
Fall Oxford, MS Chin 513: China and the World
Spring Oxford, MS Chin 514: Classical Chinese Literature
Chin 450: Domain Mentorship*

Year 5

Time Location Course
Fall Taiwan 2 Flagship Courses
2-3 Standard University Classes
Spring Taiwan Semester-long Internship

Capstone coursework and internships correspond to the academic & professional pursuits of the individual participants.

*The second summer abroad is open-ended. In the UM program, students study in Mainland China or Taiwan together as a cohort after freshman year; however, they are strongly encouraged to apply for outside programs and scholarships and return for a second summer after sophomore year.

**With approval, the domain mentorship can potentially be taken in conjunction with any course in the 400 or 500 level, fall or spring semester.

Year One (Oxford, MS)

The primary goal of the first year of study is to raise the student’s language level. Students with no prior knowledge of Chinese begin in the summer prior to their freshman year. These students complete an intensive eight-week language program that is equivalent to the entire first year of language study at Ole Miss. During the fall and spring semesters, students continue to study the vocabulary and grammar patterns necessary to discuss topics related to daily life.

Year Two (Taiwan & Oxford, MS)

Students begin the summer of their second year at the UM Flagship program at National Chung Cheng University, in Chiayi, Taiwan. During this time in Taiwan, students are encouraged to experience Chinese culture through observation, investigation, participation, and communication. Students begin to develop intercultural communicative competence through activities both inside and outside of the classroom. They also progress from controlled language processing to automatic processing. Upon return to the United States, students complete two semesters of advanced Chinese classes that focus on topics related to Chinese culture and society.

Year Three (Taiwan & Oxford, MS)

The third year typically begins with a second summer in Taiwan, this time in an outside program of the student’s choice. After completing the summer abroad, students return to the university and complete two semesters of advanced Chinese classes. These courses focus on Chinese media and introduce students to academic Chinese. Students are also encouraged to participate in China-related courses offered at the university. During this time, students transition from formal textbooks into authentic language materials. Some students spend either fall or spring semester (or both) in mainland China or Taiwan, taking language classes as well as courses related to another major. They often do this in continuation of a summer program abroad.

Year Four (Oxford, MS)

Although not required, students are encouraged to use the summer before their senior year to participate in an internship related to their field of study and to study abroad for the fall or spring semesters, particularly if they were unable to go in the previous summer. During the fall and spring semester, students take Classical Chinese and Chinese civilization courses. Students continue to study advanced syntax and semantics necessary for high proficiency levels. During this fourth year, students generally finish their coursework related to their academic major, thus preparing them for an intensive fifth year in Taiwan.

Year Five (Taiwan)

The Capstone Year is a year of transition to professional life in which Flagship students reach out well beyond the University of Mississippi on their way to careers informed by the invaluable networks of contacts they establish in Taiwan. Students begin the fifth year by enrolling directly as a visiting student. In addition to classes in Chinese media and advanced composition taught by the Flagship, all students select classes in their own area of interest from the regular university course catalog. Following the semester of direct enrollment, students complete internships in a business or an organization where the student’s skills can be utilized in the organization’s daily activities and the student can gain invaluable insights into the culture of the Chinese workplace in his or her field of interest.  The Flagship Center supports students in finding and brokering these internship opportunities, but with self-sufficiency one of the goals and markings of a certified Language Flagship graduate, students are encouraged, even expected, to proactively seek out these opportunities during the fall semester, or even before leaving for Taiwan.