Chinese language gains popularity among Turkish students

ISTANBUL (Xinhua) – Turkish secondary school students have been increasingly preferring to learn the Chinese language for their future career, according to the China-Turkey Cultural Association based in Istanbul.

“The high school entrance exam will be held on June 20 across the country, and students are in a rush to make their preferences while considering their future careers,” Association Vice President Mustafa Karsli, told Xinhua on Monday.

In Karsli’s view, most of the high school candidates in the country are very well informed that Asian countries are on the rise in the international arena.

“Therefore, they show great interest in schools that offer Asian languages education,” he said.

Karsli observed that the interest among Turkish parents and students in the Chinese language started to grow when the Belt and Road Initiative was launched in 2013.

The Sehit Mehmet Guder Anatolian Religious High School on the European side of the city launched Chinese language courses this year with the assistance of the association and has already shown notable achievements.

“Its students started to speak Chinese within a very short period of time,” Karsli noted.

He said they would reach a proficiency level at the time of their graduation that they can get an undergraduate education in China.

For Serdar Gulluer, an educational guidance counsellor of the association, the most important factor behind the trend is the awareness of the parents and students on the importance of Asian languages.

“A significant number of parents are now giving advises to their friends and relatives to consider sending children to schools with Chinese language education,” Gulluer said.

The association said it would continue to give the necessary support to other private and public schools across Istanbul, which consider launching Chinese courses.