The Instigator
Pro (for)
6 Points
The Contender
Con (against)
5 Points

Mandarin Chinese should be taught alongside English because it is used just as much as English.

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Post Voting Period
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Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 4/18/2014 Category: Education
Updated: 2 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 685 times Debate No: 52890
Debate Rounds (3)
Comments (4)
Votes (2)




Mandarin Chinese is even more commonly spoken than English due to the sheer number of people from China. So why not have it be taught with English?


I'd like to thank Pro for the debate. I'm sure it will be interesting. Also this is my first debate so have mercy please.
According to the link above more people speak English than Mandarin. 1.5 billion speak English while roughly 1 billion speak Mandarin. While this seems like a good reason for Americans to start picking up a second language you have to actually look deeper into the situation.

English is used more as an international language while mandarin is primarily a local language. Out of 1.5 billion half speak English as a first language while the other speak it as a foreign language.

Of those who speak Mandarin 800 million or so speak it as their first language. The other 200 million as a foreign language.

Why would be force our children to learn a language that even most other countries don't use as a second language? I can't deny the expansion of China economically but what does a language do for you if it's primarily spoken in its native land? English is used everywhere. Almost any country you go to there will always be someone that knows English. You can't really say that with Mandarin.

Until Mandarin becomes more international it should remain as an optional subject of study.
Debate Round No. 1


Ah but Mandarin Chinese has become international.

Mandarin is actually not all that local as it has spread to countries beyond Asia as demonstrated here:

You said it yourself that Mandarin is spoken about as much as English, so why NOT learn it? I think you underestimate how prominent Mandarin Chinese really is. It is also not a terribly difficult language to learn.

this link is primarily stating that mandarin is a good language to learn if you are going into business in the asian area
quote from this link
"Mandarin will allow you to communicate with almost anyone in China or Taiwan. But if you plan to concentrate your activities in Guangdong Province or Hong Kong you may find Cantonese to be more useful. Similarly, if you plan to do business in southern Taiwan, you might find that Taiwanese is better for establishing business and personal connections. Spoken Mandarin, Cantonese and Taiwanese are mutually unintelligible, even though they are often called dialects."
even in this link they suggest you do some research and learn the local language!

overall the information you posted does not help your argument one bit. the most you can get from your argument is that it would be good to learn mandarin for primarily business and occasional travel in the asian area. neither of these are strong enough to convince me that our children should learn mandarin. what use will mandarin do for you outside of the pacific? English is useful in Europe, South America, Africa, the Middle East, Asia, and Australia. Of these continents which would knowing mandarin help you in?

your argument that Mandarin is not so hard to learn is simply untrue. Mandarin is one of the hardest languages to learn. You have to remember that learning the language does not mean just speaking it. our children would have to learn how to read and write as well.
the link above is about the DLAB. It is a test created by the Department of Defense to test your ability to learn a language. They break the different languages into categories. the higher the number the more difficult the language. as you can see the highest category (cat 4) has Chinese (mandarin). I know this personally because i was recently in the military and had to take the test to even apply to become an asian linguist. I was able to pass the test to place in category 4 but not by much. In the Marine Corps you actually need a 110 to place in Cat 4.

So at best mandarin is good for business. even then if your are not in business then mandarin does you no good unless you are traveling to Asia. Even then most asian countries speak english as well so you don't even need to know the local language so much for travel.
Debate Round No. 2


So in other words, you do agree that Chinese is a practical language to learn, especially for the business world? Sounds like you are definitely in full support of my original statement. Chinese being useful in very specific areas as you so claim does not deny the fact that it is spoken almost as widely as English.

By the way, children have the ability to pick up languages easily with the proper education so your argument it being such a difficult language doesn't quite fly here. Learning foreign languages will be natural for most children. Studies show that learning foreign languages, no matter what the language may be is beneficial no matter how you look at it.

Your personal experience with learning Asian languages just shows that you don't have an aptitude for learning those kinds of languages, so that argument is also invalid.


DeltaOhio forfeited this round.
Debate Round No. 3
4 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 4 records.
Posted by DeltaOhio 2 years ago
Saw your debate on "If religious propaganda aren't allowed on Youtube, neither should atheistic propaganda be."

There really wasn't much in it. Would you like to do it with me?
Posted by DreamSymphony00 2 years ago
This isn't a debate about Spanish though. I'm talking about adding Chinese alongside English as it is just as practical. In many states across the U.S, there are huge populations of Chinese people especially. I'm guessing you don't live in one of those areas Idow2000. Whether or not Spanish should be added is whole nother debate.
Posted by 9spaceking 2 years ago
chinese is easy to teach? Well saying chinese is easy, writing, on the other another story.
Posted by ldow2000 2 years ago
I see your point that Mandarin is the most popular language in the world, but at the same time, Spanish is the second in the world, still higher than English, and for most people living in the United States, you're more likely to use Spanish. So by saying that Mandarin should be taught alongside English, you should also include Spanish.
2 votes have been placed for this debate. Showing 1 through 2 records.
Vote Placed by demonlord343 2 years ago
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Total points awarded:50 
Reasons for voting decision: Con, being forfeiting the final round, did make a good argument, However, mandarin appears a lot more in the business world, which leads to a domino effect. Thus, Pros points are valid. Thus, conduct goes to Pro. Spelling and grammar goes to pro. Con had minor errors. Most convincing arguments go to pro. Sources are most definitely tied.
Vote Placed by Seeginomikata 2 years ago
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Total points awarded:15 
Reasons for voting decision: Conduct- round forfeit. Arguments- Chinese is too local to just China. English speaking countries just don't have enough Chinese speakers for the effort to be worth it.